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NEWS | March 16, 2022

NSWC PCD propels supervisory professional development

By Cierra Burch NSWC PCD Public Affairs

It has been five years since Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City Division (NSWC PCD) hosted the first in-person Propel Launch course in 2017. Now, NSWC PCD recently concluded virtually hosting newly appointed supervisors for five days of leadership development, culminating in graduation on the final day.

The Propel Launch course is a mandatory training event where supervisors gain useful tools to help them in their new roles, while sharpening the existing tools in their tool kits to better lead their teams.  NSWC PCD hosted 26 supervisors across nine Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) activities, including Warfare Center divisions, February 28 to March 4.

NAVSEA created the 40-hour course to ensure supervisors have a path to success. Through subject matter experts, this course teaches an approach that focuses on understanding supervisory responsibilities, practicing interpersonal skills, and knowing appropriate paths for situationally specific human resources support. It also accomplishes one of NAVSEA’s priorities — to Build a Team to Compete and Win — which emphasizes how critical leadership development is to strengthening a collaborative culture.  

One of the many topics presented is equal employment opportunity (EEO). Monica Queen, NSWC PCD’s EEO diversity and inclusion (ED&I) deputy director, said the topic plays a significant role in supervisory training.

“The goal of the ED&I presentation is to provide adequate and sufficient knowledge of EEO and Diversity and Inclusion programs and processes to new supervisors,” says Queen. “The ED&I office wants to ensure supervisors have all the resources available to allow the supervisor to manage fairly, equally, and be inclusive. This enables the supervisor to foster a positive working environment for all.”

Roland Deale, one of six participants from NSWC PCD and the workforce development director, shares why this training is so valuable.

“This course goes into great detail explaining the role of the supervisor and how to perform some of the many responsibilities required from a supervisor,” Deale says. “This course is invaluable and even provides a student guide for reference after the course is over.”

“Much of Propel Launch is a about shifting mindsets from a focus on the individual to focus on the team,” Propel Leadership Continuum Program Manager Joseph Michalak points out. “In discussions about setting culture, we highlight that supervisors should strive for an ideal culture by checking their own behavior and becoming more intentional.”

NSWC PCD Commanding Officer, Capt. David Back, added that courses such as Propel provide critical leadership training to rising members of the NSWC PCD team, equipping them for their next challenges.

“The impact of this course goes outside of our supervisors,” states Back. “Providing this opportunity for supervisors enables increased involvement and implementation of quality communication and management practices that boost personnel engagement and create a safe, enjoyable, and inclusive work environment that our personnel want to invest their careers in.”