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Home : Media : News
NEWS | March 19, 2024

Commentary: NSWC PCD’s Strategic Plan Roll-Out - Core Values and Guiding Principles

By Danielle Kinkade, NSWC PCD corporate strategist

Every few years, the Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City Division (NSWC PCD) strategic plan is updated to meet the needs of the U.S. Navy within the littoral battlespace. Fiscal year 2024 (FY24) begins an exciting new chapter in this Navy Lab’s future. In short, our goal is to #Dominate the Littorals.

But what does that mean and what does that look like? Let’s start at the beginning.

Much time and effort went into the strategy development process and I’m excited to share to how the goal of our new strategic plan is to ensure NSWC PCD, and everyone within our workforce, will continue to provide relevant solutions to the warfighter.

Over the course of 2023, the NSWC PCD leadership team held a series of workshops to develop the NSWC PCD FY24 Strategic Plan.

To develop the new strategic plan, the leadership team reflected on lessons learned from the previous strategic campaign plan, assessed our organizational strengths and weaknesses, scanned the geopolitical landscape of threats and challenges to freedom of the seas, analyzed the direction of higher echelons including the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), the Department of the Navy (DoN), Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA), and NAVSEA Warfare Centers. Our leadership team combined all that and, most importantly, considered how our organization can use its unique toolbox of knowledge, mission area expertise, and unique facilities and resources to support the Navy going forward.

We first began the process by updating our vision statement to, “Delivering relevant solutions in the littorals from seabed to space: For Today, Tomorrow, and the Navy after Next.” This defines what we want our command to do in the future and who we want to be as an organization.

Every word of this vision statement was selected intentionally. It serves as a reminder that we are here to deliver technical solutions to help warfighters make the fight unfair. Whether we accomplish this by putting new or updated tools and technologies in the hands of our service members, or by providing expert analysis or subject matter expertise, our success or failure is ultimately determined by the products and solutions we provide to the warfighter. We cannot deliver solutions to the fleet without each and every department in our command, both business and production, working together.

When we think about the littoral battlespace, we start with its doctrinal definition:

  • Littorals: In naval operations, that portion of the world's land masses adjacent to the ocean within direct control of and vulnerable to the striking power of sea-based forces
  • This littoral battlespace is comprised of two segments:
  1. Seaward: the area from the open ocean to the shore, which must be controlled to support operations ashore
  2. Landward: the area inland from the shore that can be supported and defended directly from the sea*

The final aspect of the vision—“for Today, Tomorrow, and the Navy after Next”—addresses the time phasing of our work and speaks to NSWC PCD’s role as a full lifecycle organization, meaning we support the present-day warfighting tools that are in the hands of the fleet while simultaneously creating and developing new ideas for warfighting tools and concepts for future war and conflicts.

As previously mentioned, the leadership team spent quite a bit of time doing a post-mortem analysis of the previous 2018 Strategic Campaign Plan, and reflecting on lessons learned. Applying these insights, the new strategic plan looks a little bit different than its predecessor and is organized in categories instead of goals.

Contribution to the Warfighter – this category represents our mission and is the reason our organization exists. Our success or failure is ultimately determined by what we put in the hands in the warfighter.

Technical Excellence – this category represents the subject matter expertise, processes, and tools required for all of us to produce quality results, across every department.

Business Excellence – this category represents the business functions (think contracts and comptroller), management systems (such as chain or command), and infrastructure (facilities and tools) required to complete our mission.

Expert Workforce – this category represents our command’s most valuable resource – each of you! Our incredible workforce of more than 1,600 government employees who bring their dedication, passion and proficiency daily to maintain this command’s unique knowledge and skill sets.

Financial Stewardship – this category represents the stewardship and financial management processes required of us as a working capital fund organization (a Navy working capital funds means we don’t make a profit and we break-even over time).

These categories were derived from the industry standard concept of the Balanced Scorecard and we tailored these categories to reflect how we do business as a NAVSEA Warfare Center Division.

The meat of the strategic plan are the objectives under each category. To determine these objectives, our leadership team asked, “How does the Navy need us [both now and in the future] to support them with our unique skill sets and resources, what are the barriers we must overcome, and what enablers are required for us to be able perform that work?” We distilled that information down into the objectives under each category and, over the upcoming 2024 Coastal Compass editions, we will describe each of these objectives in depth.

Finally, our new strategic plan incorporates a holistic and categorical approach to how we can accomplish our mission using the Navy’s Core Values–Honor, Courage, Commitment—and these foundational guiding principles. Our guiding principles are “new” in that we have not named them before, but they should be familiar because these guiding principles are how we choose to do business here at NSWC PCD.

We are committed to:

Serving the Nation, Warfighter and the Mission

Operating as a Unified Team

Caring for our People

Learning and Growing

Working Smarter, Not Harder

The guiding principles were printed on lanyard cards, distributed to our workforce and you should notice the statement “plank owner” in the top left corner. That’s because each of our personnel is a part of this mission and daily process, and this is the mindset we need to be successful. We ask for your feedback on what’s going well and what needs to be improved in this journey.

Most importantly, we need your participation with embracing the guiding principles in your day-to-day activities because, ultimately, we are all here to support the warfighter and our guiding principles will help us to deliver for the Navy.

*The DoD’s Command and Control for Joint Maritime Operations (JP 3-32)