Growing and Staying Fresh as We Take on More Responsibilities
Not too long ago, someone told me that I didn’t need training and leadership development anymore because of the position I held as an executive. I couldn’t have disagreed more. We need to continually learn and grow to stay fresh, no matter what stage we are in our careers. I think training and lessons in leadership get more and more necessary as we take on additional responsibilities.
That’s one of the reasons I’m pleased to tell you that next week we are starting a series of nine workshops that focus on leadership development specifically for our operations managers (OMs), which is one of our most challenging positions. OMs are located at our larger air traffic facilities, and are responsible for managing the air traffic operation. They have a lot to juggle in addition to ensuring the integrity of safety and efficiency in the operation. They also need to meet the expectations around quality of services being provided, accommodate the demands of new entrants, understand community noise concerns, and ensure the continuous development of controllers and operational supervisors.
Our OMs are our pipeline into the future – I expect some of these folks to be the ATO’s senior leaders in the coming years if they choose to pursue those opportunities. This OM training will also help to ensure that we have alignment from our front line supervisors, all the way up and through the OM's to the Air Traffic Manager. This is also important in building leadership skills as we ensure healthy succession planning.
At the workshop segment of the year-round Managers Leadership Development Program, they’ll work on ways to strengthen their teams, drive cultural change and think strategically. Later on they’ll have virtual trainings including action plans to identify blind spots that stand in the way of our full potential. Giving OM's the right tools and resources will help us drive greater operational success and workforce engagement.
Our deputy COO Tim Arel and I think this is so important that one of us are planning to visit all nine sessions across our service areas between now and June, starting with the first workshop next week in Fort Worth, Texas. More than 200 of our OMs are scheduled to attend a session – almost all of them. They’ll have a chance to hear about our vision and strategic goals, and hear how the work they do maps to our overall mission.
I want to thank our colleagues in Management Services and Air Traffic Services for collaborating to develop an innovative three-day curriculum that we hope will be updated and delivered annually.