By Diane Hudson Burns, FJSTC, CPCC, CLTMC, CPRW
SES Project Manager, The Resume Place
The Leadership Journey chart, used by OPM (*acronyms are translated below), is the focus of a chapter in the new book, “The New SES Application” (publication date September 2011 by Kathryn Troutman and Diane Hudson Burns).
The Leadership Journey serves as a road-map for leadership development and walks a professional through his career via leadership steps, with a goal of attaining SES. The chart covers all 28 leadership competencies required of OPM to be selected for SES. The model is used to help individuals and federal agencies build the development segment of employees’ succession plans.
The core Leadership competencies are basic competencies for all employees (Managing Yourself) – these are the cross functional competencies that are the foundation of leadership and personal management: Interpersonal Skills; Oral Communication; Continual Learning; Written Communication; Integrity/Honesty; Public Service Motivation. Research indicates that without these core competencies, success at upper levels is not possible.
The Leadership Journey illustrates the customary levels of management and leadership. Associated with each level are related competencies that are critical for success at that level, and form a developmental step for the next level of management or leadership. There are key experiences at each level that are designed to reinforce the associated competencies. These key experiences eventually serve as building blocks for the ECQs.
As the model’s steps move upward, Managing Yourself, moves to Managing Projects (equivalent to GS 5-11 positions). Employees in this stage of their careers build project management skill sets and five additional leadership competencies in Team Building; Customer Service; Technical Credibility; Accountability; Influencing/Negotiating.