A new year brings resolutions and for many this may be developing their leadership skills. Norfolk Naval Shipyard (NNSY) Command University (CU) has created a program that allows shipyard employees to achieve this goal at their own pace from the comfort of their office. Titled Leadership Skills for Emerging Leaders, the course is a 14-hour, self-paced, on-demand, computer-based training available on LinkedIn Learning. Although the course was designed primarily for employees in non-supervisory or work leader positions, Dave Randall, director of the Emerging Leaders program, says the course is a good refresher for all employees at all levels of leadership.
The training program was developed out of necessity. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the popular two-day in-person Fundamentals of Leadership Training for Non-Supervisory Leaders has been suspended. Some organizations require the training for their professional qualifications. When the class was suspended, there were more than 500 employees on a waiting list. To meet this demand and keep NNSY employees safe, Command University created Emerging Leaders. The course was launched in August 2020 and, following a successful pilot, was opened to all shipyard employees in October.
The course is based on the Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) Civilian Leadership Development Program (CLDP), which has identified 37 competencies that leaders at various levels should have a certain level of knowledge, skills and abilities. The CLDP is divided into five categories: leading self, leading teams and projects, leading people, leading organizations and programs, and leading the institution. The first 13 skills fall under the “self-leader” category. According to Randall, “every leader should be familiar with these fundamental skills.”
Any NNSY employee can participate in the course. The only prerequisites are having a valid @navy.mil account and the support of an employee’s immediate supervisor. Employees without regular access to a computer can use the Command University classroom in the building. 1575 when in-person classes are not in session to complete the training.
When an employee contacts Command University, they receive a student guide (electronic or hard copy) and sign up for LinkedIn Learning. The participant will then follow on LinkedIn Learning and answer the questions in the student guide. As the course is self-paced, students can work at their own pace to complete the course within a maximum of 14 weeks. Command University staff recommend that students take their time, perhaps an hour a week, to learn the material and practice before moving on.
At the end of the course, students will receive ATMS credit and a course completion certificate. Employees who are members of organizations that require the foundations of leadership can use this training as part of their qualification process.
To learn more about the program, employees can contact Dave Randall. Contact information and more class details are available on the Command University SharePoint page on WebCentral. Supervisors may also recommend that a student take this course as part of their personal development.
“This course is a great start for any NNSY employee to begin their leadership journey,” Randall said. “Any individual who guides or influences others is a leader. You can find these influencers, guides, coaches and mentors in every store or office – on the waterfront, at home or in the community. Leadership is a journey, not a destination.