Pre-Supervisory Leadership Development

Whether preparing to lead small groups, large teams, or simply preparing next steps, the path to becoming a top-notch leader requires constant attention and fine-tuning.  To ensure these individuals are well prepared to fill supervisory and managerial positions, agencies should provide training for those interested in becoming supervisors or managers. By sharing knowledge, ideas, and best practices, agencies can not only reach, but exceed their training goals.  Useful tools such as the Individual Development Plan (IDP), crafted by the employee and his or her supervisor, are critical to the supervisory development process. Through the IDP, the employee can clarify professional aspirations, and the supervisor can provide insights on career tracks essential to both employee and the organization.


According to 5 U.S.C. 4121 and 5 CFR 412.201, the head of each agency is responsible for establishing a succession management program which includes training to develop employees to become managers.  Employee development programs are a fundamental tool for a robust leadership succession management plan. As a result of effective succession planning, an agency’s employee development program can ensure an adequate number of educated/qualified individuals to fill supervisory and managerial positions for critical functions within the organization.

Agencies should consider the competencies listed in the OPM Supervisory Guide when developing their pre-supervisory developmental programs.  In addition, pre-supervisory developmental programs should be based on the Executive Core Qualifications (ECQs).  Agencies may identify specific competencies from the ECQs and OPM Supervisory Guide and apply them to all leadership development programs starting with pre-supervisory training extending through executive development. Agencies should develop their pre-supervisory training programs to meet the needs of the organization and the aspirations of individual employees.


Federal Government Tools and Resources

The U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM)

(Having trouble with the embedded video above? Try viewing the webcast at this link: OPM Pre-Supervisory Webcast on YouTube.)

To view the slides from the webcast, click on EPA and ATF below:

Other OPM resources:


The Pentagon Force Protection Agency (PFPA)


The National Institutes of Health (NIH)


The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)


The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS)


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