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OPM.gov / Agency Services / Center For Leadership Development / Leadership Development Courses
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Leadership Development Courses

 

Overview

Our interagency leadership development courses guide you through a career-spanning process of leadership development, from aspiring leader to senior executive. You’ll learn alongside peers from across government, networking and sharing best practices. Our courses are offered in Washington, DC, other locations around the country, and online.

Our curriculum is built upon OPM’s Executive Core Qualifications (ECQs) and competencies that represent guideposts on the path to career and organizational success. Learn more about our approach to leadership curriculum.

View our full course schedule.

About Us

The Center for Leadership Development's interagency leadership development courses are offered through the Federal Executive Institute (FEI). Contact us at 202-606-2005 or leadersolutions@opm.gov. 

Skill-Building Courses

We offer a variety of skill-building courses for non-supervisors and those looking to progress to higher levels. View our full course schedule or learn about specific courses and programs below. Contact us at leadersolutions@opm.gov. 

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Leadership Courses

Gain the fundamental skills to be an effective team leader, project manager, and team member. View our full course schedule or learn about specific courses and programs below. Contact us at leadersolutions@opm.gov. 

Leadership Courses

Leadership Assessment Program

Our Leadership Assessment Program helps further develop your capacity as a supervisor or manager. Gain greater self-awareness and understanding of how your own strengths and areas for development can impact team collaboration and dynamics through OPM’s Leadership Assessment Program. Register based on your years of supervisory experience:

Supervisors

Gain valuable insights into workplace motivation and employee engagement in our Supervisory Development Courses. You'll expand your fundamental knowledge into a foundation for great leadership:

Managers

Expand upon your unique position of ensuring mission success in our Management Development Courses. Build peer networks across federal agencies, learn new ways to develop and deploy your staff, and practice collaborative management of work team cultures.



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Senior Leaders & Executives

Target Grades: GS-14 and above

Whether you’re looking to further develop as a high-level leader, assess your leadership skills and competencies, or explore the dynamics of relationship building, we have the course for you. View our full course schedule or learn about specific courses and programs below.

Leadership Courses

Senior Executive Preparation

Assess your readiness to be an executive or member of the Senior Executive Service (SES). Take the next step in your career with a focused picture of your leadership strengths

Federal Executive Institute

OPM’s Federal Executive Institute offers additional leadership development programs for senior leaders in the grades of GS-15 and SES:

Learn more about the Federal Executive Institute.

LEAD Certificate Program

Overview

Take charge of your professional development with OPM's Leadership Education and Development (LEAD) Certificate Program. You’ll assess your leadership effectiveness, gain core knowledge, and develop critical skills for leadership success, whether for your current leadership role or one you aspire to. Through a combination of core classes and electives, you’ll focus on essential leadership competencies while personalizing your own growth journey to help fulfill your Individual Development Plan (IDP). Each program culminates with a certificate signed by the Director of OPM, formally recognizing your achievement.

Certificate Levels

The LEAD Certificate Program offers a clear path to career development for four essential leadership roles: Aspiring Leader, Team Lead, Supervisor, and Manager. Each level is a strategically curated learning experience that takes you from the job you have to the job you want, providing guided, purposeful learning at any point in your career. 

To enroll: contact the LEAD Certificate Program manager at LEAD@opm.gov to complete registration and enrollment requirements. 

Learn more about each certificate level: 

Objective: Gain fundamental skills to grow your confidence as a high performing, rising leader.

Audience: Emerging and aspiring leaders in non-supervisory and non-managerial roles. This often includes, but is not limited to, employees in grades up to GS-9.

Program Length: Five courses over a maximum of three years.

Estimated Program Cost: $6,200*

Required core courses:

Choose three electives:

 

 

 

*Estimated cost is a cumulative total for all five required courses and will vary based on selection of elective courses. There is no cost to enroll in the LEAD Certificate Program, but payment for course tuition is required when registering for individual required courses. This estimated cost does not include travel-related expenses if participants attend in-person versions of required courses.

Objective: Learn strategies and techniques to lead from where you are and refine practical skills for building, managing, and participating in teams and projects.

Audience: Aspiring to be a team lead or are currently leading teams/projects and have not had team lead training. This often includes, but is not limited to, employees in grades GS-11 through GS-13.

Program Length: Five courses over a maximum of three years.

Estimated Cost: $11,600*

Required core courses:

Choose two electives:

 

 

*Estimated cost is a cumulative total for all five required courses and will vary based on selection of elective courses. There is no cost to enroll in the LEAD Certificate Program, but payment for course tuition is required when registering for individual required courses. This estimated cost does not include travel-related expenses if participants attend in-person versions of required courses.

Objective: Build skills that emphasize exercising influence and authority, knowing when to lead and when to manage, and fostering a diverse and inclusive workforce that values and leverages differences.

Audience: New federal supervisors or supervisors in their first year (completes the new supervisor training requirement). This often includes, but is not limited to, employees in grades GS-13 through GS-15.

Program Length: Five courses over a maximum of three years.

Estimated Cost: $13,500*

Required core courses:

Choose three electives:

 

 

*Estimated cost is a cumulative total for all five required courses and will vary based on selection of elective courses. There is no cost to enroll in the LEAD Certificate Program, but payment for course tuition is required when registering for individual required courses. This estimated cost does not include travel-related expenses if participants attend in-person versions of required courses.

Objective: Acquire strategies to align operations with organizational priorities, mobilize employees, and create innovative solutions to complex challenges.

Audience: Second-level leaders (duties include program management; direct work of an organizational unit; exercise influence, design and implement policy, and work in broad partnerships within and outside their agency; and/or supervisor of supervisors or accountable for success of specific line or staff functions). This often includes, but is not limited to, employees in grades GS-14 and GS-15.

Program Length: Five courses over a maximum of three years.

Estimated Cost: $16,500*

Required core courses:

Choose three electives:

 

 

*Estimated cost is a cumulative total for all five required courses and will vary based on selection of elective courses. There is no cost to enroll in the LEAD Certificate Program, but payment for course tuition is required when registering for individual required courses. This estimated cost does not include travel-related expenses if participants attend in-person versions of required courses.

Why a LEAD Certificate?

OPM created the LEAD Certificate Program in 2008 to give federal employees a path toward leadership development with clear progression to support agency succession planning. Courses align with the executive core qualifications used by many departments and agencies in selection, performance management, and development for leadership positions.

For Individuals: Learn alongside your peers and build professional networks in the program's cross-agency courses. You'll enroll in courses at your own pace, giving you time to digest, reflect upon, and plan how to apply your learning. Validate your mastery with a capstone presentation that synthesizes your learning through reflection, planning, and action.

With program courses offered online, LEAD Certificates are more accessible than ever before, bringing you closer to achieving your developmental goals. You also have the option to further develop your strengths and expand your impact in organizations with individualized coaching sessions.

In each LEAD Certificate level, rising and established federal leaders participate in content-rich modules that provide:

  • Assessments of current leadership effectiveness and/or potential
  • Overviews of key leadership competencies critical to success
  • Intensive development of workplace-relevant skills
  • Interagency collaborative learning environments
  • Faculty with government and leadership expertise

For Agencies: By training tomorrow's leaders today, the LEAD Certificate Program helps agencies meet the challenge of succession management. The LEAD Certificate Program can be delivered in a cohort format for groups within your agency, bringing measurable value to organizations through:

  • Clear progression to support succession management
  • Networking and sharing of best practices among agencies
  • Ease of government-to-government interagency agreements

Contact the LEAD Certificate Program manager at LEAD@opm.gov to learn more about bringing LEAD to your organization. 

How to Enroll

You must contact the LEAD Certificate Program manager at LEAD@opm.gov to complete registration and enrollment requirements. Please include your contact information and your desired LEAD Certificate Program level. Registering for a LEAD-qualifying course does not automatically enroll you in the LEAD Certificate Program. 

Agencies interested in bringing the LEAD Certificate Program to their organizations should contact the LEAD Certificate Program manager for more information.

Common Questions

Choose the program that is right for you based on your leadership experience level and where you want to take your career. Your specific program could be based on your current leadership role, or one you’re aspiring to. We recommend checking with your supervisor to get clarity on what’s best for you and your developmental goals.

The LEAD Certificate Program is a self-paced program, which means you register for each course individually as you progress. You’ll track your progress in our learning management system. Once all courses are completed, you’ll declare your completion and the LEAD Certificate Program manager will verify your status for graduation. 

You must contact the LEAD Certificate Program manager to complete registration and enrollment requirements. Registering for a LEAD-qualifying course does not automatically enroll you in the LEAD Certificate Program. 

Enroll by contacting  LEAD@opm.gov.

Good news - if you’re currently enrolled in or completed a LEAD-qualifying course after October 1, 2019, you can have it applied to your LEAD Certificate Program! Receiving credit for courses taken prior to October 1, 2019, will be considered on a case-by-case basis only. Please contact the LEAD Certificate Program manager at LEAD@opm.gov to discuss your specific situation.

You have three years to complete all required courses.

We don’t require prerequisites for enrolling at various LEAD certificate levels; however, we strongly recommend checking with your supervisor or training manager for specific requirements.

Our executive and senior executive programs (grades GS-15 and above) are offered through the Federal Executive Institute. Learn more about Leadership for a Democratic Society (GS-15 and above) and SES Leading EDGE (Senior Executive Service).

Only OPM training programs listed for a given level of leadership will count towards a LEAD Certificate at that level.

While we do not limit your ability to change LEAD Certificate levels, we strongly recommend you review requirements, as not all courses qualify across more than one level. You will still be required to complete all courses required for your new LEAD Certificate level. Please contact the LEAD Certificate Program manager to change your enrollment. 

For the best possible learning experience, we recommend you complete core courses in sequential order before enrolling in electives. Electives can be taken in the order you choose. 

The LEAD Certificate Program can be delivered in a cohort-based format for groups within your agency. While cohort programs are typically completed in one year, timeframes can be established based on your needs. Contact the LEAD Certificate Program manager at LEAD@opm.gov to learn more about bringing LEAD to your organization.

Agencies looking for completely customized leadership development programs can contact our Custom Leadership Solutions team.  

Please contact the LEAD Certificate Program manager. We look forward to supporting your leadership development needs.

Coaching Services

Individual coaching

Become a more effective leader with professional and personalized one-on-one coaching. Our leadership coaching services provide a sustained partnership focused on improving your effectiveness in your organization. 

Why leadership coaching?

Our coaches can help you identify your developmental goals and design a plan to achieve them in a safe, nurturing, and confidential environment. You can expect:

  • Increased effectiveness through improved self-awareness of your attitudes, patterns, and behaviors, and how those factors influence your organization’s success
  • Development of new competencies designed to help you achieve specific goals
  • Empowerment to work through challenges and changes at work by helping you grow your own capacity
  • Coaching is voluntary, confidential, tailored to your expectations, and sessions are scheduled directly between you and your coach

Register for one-on-one coaching.

Individual coaching for groups

Looking to bring coaching to groups within your agency? Contact us at leadersolutions@opm.gov

Agency Programs

Group leadership courses

Our portfolio of predesigned leadership development courses can be delivered for groups within your agency.* We offer deliveries of one course or a series of courses, virtually or in-person, to support your agency’s learning plan. Let us provide the leadership and professional development skills your employees need to excel at all levels of your organization.

Contact us at leadersolutions@opm.gov to learn more about group delivery of courses for your agency.

*Our Leadership for a Democratic Society program cannot be provided for single-agency groups.

Tailored leadership programs

Looking for something customized? Our enterprise leadership experts address your specific needs with tailored leadership development solutions to support your workforce. We can design a program that meets the scope and size of your organization and provide subject-matter experts to help address your agency’s challenges.

Learn more about our tailored leadership programs.

 

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