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By Jeremy Roman, NSWC PCD Public Affairs
Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City Division (NSWC PCD) continued its pursuit to be recognized as a model organization, both now and in the future, by graduating its latest Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 Leadership Level 3 (LL3) and 4 (LL4) Development Program cohorts last fall.
This program is an initiative of NSWC PCD Workforce Development and was designed to help its employees develop specific leadership competencies as they progress throughout their careers. Alvin Albright, NSWC PCD Workforce Development Leadership/Supervisor Training manager, explains the program grows in complexity as the employee’s responsibilities increase.
“Progressing through competency levels is an expectation for an employee. They grow from being new, not knowing the organization and/or having minimal competency experiences to a point where they are being selected to become a supervisor,” said Albright. “We have implemented a program to provide structured training in competency areas that were identified … to ensure that the programs addressed competencies that are necessary at our site for successful mission accomplishment.”
This professional development effort first launched in FY 2021 offering the LL3 Program only. The inaugural LL4 Program was added this year to reflect the program’s dynamic format. Both offered 10 courses, occurring once per month, with the exception of December and September. All course curriculum included Leading Change, Leading People, Results Driven, Business Acumen, Building Coalitions and Fundamental Competencies. Dr. Michelle Kincer, NSWC PCD Expeditionary and Maritime Systems Department chief strategist, shared her experience of being in the Navy Lab’s first LL4 cohort.
“While many of the topics were engaging, it was the group networking and discussion that really brought value to the table. I met many of my coworkers that I knew in passing from emails or meetings, but the frequent discussions in each session gave me insight into their roles and also who they are as humans,” said Kincer. “I really appreciated that our cohort had leaders from across the command, and not concentrated in any specific department. Now that we’ve ‘grown up’ together, we can work together better, both by better understanding each other’s perspectives while also by relying on and practicing the concepts we learned.”
Due to its scope, only 20 applicants could be selected for each program level this year; however, it reoccurs on an annual basis for those employees wanting to expand their resume or build on their leadership skills.
Michael Sumpter, NSWC PCD Information Technology specialist and LL3 graduate, shared how this course benefits him and the workforce.
“Attending the course provided the refresher that I needed to be a better leader in today’s workforce. I taught very similar courses while in the Air Force but it had been more than 20 years. I am refreshed with new ideas and strategies so that if the opportunity arises for a leadership position, I am ready,” said Sumpter. “The program has also made me a better employee by increasing my knowledge on current leadership philosophies and how I am impacted by them. Knowing why leadership makes certain decisions helps me understand and support them and allows me to be a better employee to my peers as well as my supervisor.”
The desired outcome for this program is not only meant to advance the individual but the fleet as well.
“[This experience has allowed me to] gain new knowledge of how the different missions work together. There should be one main goal for all employees here and that is to ensure warfighting dominance in the littoral battlespace,” said Sumpter. “Each member plays an integral part in helping the command meet that vision and working with the people in this course, provided me a better understanding on how we can build on the synergy to support the One Team - One Fight here at NSWC PCD.”
Leadership Level 4 Cohort
Leadership Level 3 Cohort
Joy St Amant
Dr. Michelle Kincer