Friday, January 22, 2016

Leadership Professional Development

I'm totally cheating with this post, plagiarizing an email I sent to a
friend who is starting her XO ride this summer. It's been a long day. 

She asked me for a list of the topics I use for JO pro dev a bit ago, which
is below with some notes on each topic. I also may ask the JOs for
suggestions for our early summer patrol. I think the 1st year ENSs may have
enough sense by then of what they don't know to have some good ideas for

Pro dev is Sunday afternoons underway, after Divine Services; I try not to
go for longer than an hour, but some of the discussions get carried away.
I'm also going to change it to "Leadership Pro Dev," away from just JO Pro
Dev, to encourage the participation of Chiefs and maybe 1st Class POs for
particular topics. Still mandatory for officers, but more encouraged for
Chiefs. JO watchstanders know they have to find a stand-by if they're
scheduled for watch. We wait for everybody to get there before we start.

Officer specific topics:
-- OERs: usually 2x/year because it's that important. I use a "Writing OER
Input" doc that I drafted a while ago and make the COMDT's Guide to Boards
and Panels mandatory reading prior to the discussion.
-- Officer workforce management -- usually in late spring/early summer after
the Officer Corps Management Plan (OCMP, on CG-12A's portal page; mandatory
reading prior to discussion) comes out. It's also helpful to have the latest
Active Duty Promotion List (ADPL) selection message (for any rank, really)
to use as an example as well. The stats at the bottom of the message are
great to talk about above zone selection and in zone reordering. This is the
enterprise-wide view (selection size, OOS, time in grade, etc), but usually
devolves into what this means for "my e-resume."
-- Officer career management -- usually in late summer/early fall prior to
submission of e-resumes. Good to review OPM-4's career management guides

General leadership:
-- Time management/organization: I try to offer different ways of managing
their time and organizing their stuff. This one is tough since each person
has to find what works for them, usually through trial and error.
-- Effective writing: Chapter 10 of the Correspondence Manual is the
required read-ahead. Also helpful to have a writing example to evaluate on
whether it is effective or not.
-- Leadership philosophy development: I know they get a ton of this at the
Academy, but it's interesting to see how their perspective changes very
quickly when their in an operational
-- Effective counseling: I ask the CPO Mess to lead this one; it's a good
way for Chiefs to work into that "JO mentor" role. It's good to link this
one to the Enlisted Employee Review (EER) session described further down.
-- External engagement: this has a homework assignment for officers to meet
with/invite stakeholders to ship, which takes some work on the XO/CO's part
to come up with good/reasonably accessible local stakeholders for the JOs to
reach out to (definitely lucky in Wilmington for that, with so many good
partners). Examples include: river pilots, local business coalitions, VFWs
or other military related orgs, local JROTC programs, fire dept (EO), police
dept (OPS), local volunteer/support groups (Red Cross, etc.). We start with
a discussion about "unity of effort" and the importance of working with
partners, with supporting documentation from COMDT's Guide to Boards and
-- Flag management/service etiquette: this was a JO-requested topic; it may
morph more to general etiquette, so we can talk about nautical and service
traditions. The flag aspect can be good if you have someone in the
leadership team who has Aide experience or has worked closely with a number
of flag officers 

Enlisted workforce specific topics:
-- Enlisted workforce management -- usually early summer after Enlisted
Training and Accession Plan (from CG-12A portal site) comes out in early
May. Discussion about workforce pyramids, how the SWE process works,
ERATS/advancements, Rating Force Master Chiefs, A schools, etc. Once we get
talking about it, the questions become pretty broad reaching. One topic that
*should/must* be covered is the "Recommended/Not Recommended" question --
also should cover that in the next topic. Definitely helps to have a couple
Chiefs in the room for this one.
-- Enlisted Employee Evaluation Reports (EERs) -- New topic for this
upcoming patrol. Different roles for Supervisors, Marking Official,
Approving Official. I think we'll talk mostly about member's input, and how
the gets worked up the chain of command, but I may spend a few minutes on
the Direct Access process we use onboard to route the marks.

General CG knowledge
-- Appropriations structure: usually in late winter after the President's
Budget comes out (1st Mon in Feb). Very basic approps structure, and general
numbers associated with it. Gets to
"color of money" or "buckets of money" so when they hear AFC-45 v. AFC-56
it's not a foreign language. Dreadfully boring for most of them, but hugely
critical, IMHO.
-- Headquarters structure: early winter after Flag/SES assignment message is
released. I showed slides of CG-81's Org Charts for the upper levels and
their eyes all bled. Getting them to understand the difference between even
DCO and DCMS is a start.
-- DCO/Area/District/Sector/cutter interactions: General discussion about
the different operational levels; similar to HQ structure discussion, but
closer to home because we're talking about things the JOs tend to have heard
of/done. Also good to get into a small discussion of how logistical support
fits in there...though can lead to bigger discussion of operations v.
-- Mishaps/risk analysis: Use a couple case studies and relate to some
recent operational decision which helps to widen their aperture on risk
analysis/mitigation. I use a shipmate's mishap report from when he
intentionally grounded his CB-M when he was on the 87; he did a great job of
explaining risk v. gain. We reviewed these then talked about why we made the
decision to cut our patrol short after one of our SSDGs catastrophically
failed even though JIATF-S had an op pending they wanted to use us for.
-- Strategic document discussion: Not sure how I'm going to do this one --
there's so many docs to chose from. Maybe an overview of the major ones (CCG
Strategic Intent, Western Hemisphere Strategy, Cyber Strategy, Pub 1, Artic
Strategy, and Cooperative Strategy), and then chose one to get more in depth
with...though that means I'll have to actually read all the strategy 
-- CG Intel: Our new CO has an intel background so he gave a presentation on
our intel partners, CG intel structure and some of the types of intel we
work with. Need the right person for this one.

Other topics that have been suggested that I haven't worked in yet:
-- Award writing, especially just prior to awards season
-- Engineering principles, which I think could reasonably include a
discussion of the CG's maintenance structure/philosophy
-- Shiphandling principles in a classroom setting (though our debriefs are
pretty thorough)
-- Personal financial planning
-- Benefits discussion: could be combo'd with personal financial planning;
someone was asking specifically about the VA housing loan guarantee
-- Working with civilians
-- Where to look for "extra" money, i.e., backlog, security funds, POP Board
self-help funds -- could be a practical dovetail into the approps structure

LCDR Charlotte Mundy
Executive Officer
Quarterdeck: 910-815-4528
Cell: 910-367-3328

1 comment:

JulieAnn said...

What a great list! I sometimes wish I, as a spouse, could learn on these topics. Great work!