Thursday, December 9, 2010

16 Navy Leader Competencies

1. Sets goals and performance standards.  Outstanding Navy leaders set goals to improve task performance and use them to assess the ongoing performance of a task, as well as the task's results.


2. Takes initiative. When a problem is encountered, outstanding Navy leaders take initiative in defining it, accept the responsibility of acting on it, and move immediately to solve it.


3. Plans and organizes. Outstanding Navy leaders plan and organize tasks, people and resources in their order of importance and schedule the tasks for achievement of their goal.


4. Optimizes use of resources. Outstanding Navy leaders match individuals' capabilities with job requirements to maximize tasks accomplishment.


5. Delegates. Outstanding Navy leaders use the chain of command to assign tasks by methods other than a direct order, to get subordinates to accept task responsibility.


6. Monitors results.  Outstanding Navy leaders systematically check progress on task accomplishment.


7. Rewards. Outstanding Navy leaders recognize and reward for effective performance on a specific task.


8. Disciplines. In holding subordinates accountable for work goals and Navy standards, outstanding Navy leaders appropriately discipline subordinates, in order to increase the likelihood of the subordinates' improved performance.


9. Self-control. Outstanding Navy leaders hold back on impulse and instead weigh the facts, keep a balanced perspective, and act appropriately.


10. Influences. Outstanding Navy leaders persuade people skillfully -- up, across and down the chain of command -- to accomplish tasks and maintain the organization.


11. Team builds. Outstanding Navy leaders promote team-work within their work group and with other work groups.


12. Develops subordinates. Outstanding Navy leaders spend time working with their subordinates, coaching them toward improved performance and helping them to be skillful and responsible in getting the job done at a high standard.


13. Positive expectations. Outstanding navy leaders trust in people's basic worth and ability to perform.  They approach subordinates with a desire for the subordinates' development.


14. Realistic expectations. Although outstanding Navy leaders believe that most subordinates want to and can do a good job, they take care not to set a subordinate up for failure by expecting too much.  Concern about a subordinate's shortcomings is expressed honestly.


15. Understands. Outstanding Navy leaders identify subordinates' problems and help them to understand these problems.  Such leaders appropriately aid others in solving their problems.


16. Conceptualizes. Outstanding Navy leaders dig out the relevant facts in a complex situation and organize those facts to gain a clear understanding of the situation before acting.

And, from Rubber Ducky...

17. Writes well. Navy leaders know their way around the written word and avoid non-parallel constructions (example: list-headings throughout); avoid jargon and slang (e.g., Team Builds; maximize task accomplishment); avoid comma splices (e.g., 1st paragraph); employ the Oxford comma (e.g., 3rd paragraph); avoid awkward constructions (e.g., 5th & 8th paragraphs); eschew patronizing language (e.g., 'Outstanding Navy Leaders' throughout); maintain consistent style (e.g., Navy or navy?); avoid mixing singular and plural voice (e.g., entire piece).


From:  P.A. Foley, From Classroom to Wardroom, Masters Thesis, Naval Postgraduate School, December 1983

5 comments:

Rubber Ducky said...

17. Writes well. Navy leaders know their way around the written word and avoid non-parallel constructions (example: list-headings throughout); avoid jargon and slang (e.g., Team Builds; maximize task accomplishment); avoid comma splices (e.g., 1st paragraph); employ the Oxford comma (e.g., 3rd paragraph); avoid awkward constructions (e.g., 5th & 8th paragraphs); eschew patronizing language (e.g., 'Outstanding Navy Leaders' throughout); maintain consistent style (e.g., Navy or navy?); avoid mixing singular and plural voice (e.g., entire piece).

I know, that was snippy and it's only a school exercise. On one hand, I can applaud Foley's desire to capture an important topic. On the other, I see some things missing: "Gets the job done!" "Identifies goals." "Plans effectively." "Communicates effectively." "Shows moral and physical courage." "Behaves with honor at all times." "Puts mission first."

Admiral Rickover thought that leadership training was feckless - he played in a useful dialogue in Proceedings many years ago on the subject. I'm not sure he was right, but do think one gets farther by studying effective leaders and their common characteristics than by trying to capture the full range of important leadership attributes as a to-do list.

A last critique of Foley's list: it seems clearly focused on small-unit leadership, the squad or shipboard division. Other traits (I've listed some above) play larger in higher-level leadership jobs.

For myself, I fall back on the phrasing of a Boy Scout executive I knew in my youth: "Leadership is the ability to get the job done without doing it yourself." A certain elegance and astringency to that, yes?.

Anonymous said...

"farther" or "further?"

Leadership cannot be learned or taught. Period.

Rubber Ducky said...

"Further." Just checking whether (weather?) anyone is reading.

General Quarters said...

Writes well, is a great addition. I would add: speaks well in public. Good oratory is especially important from LT on up. The higher you rise, the more adept at you must be.

Anonymous said...

And...is well spoken of.