SES Executive Core Competencies
… a resource in the Competencies database
Competencies listed under fundamental competencies and five core qualifications
The U.S. Office of Personnel Management (reference below and link to the right) has identified 6 “Fundamental Competencies” and 23 others under the following five “Executive Core Qualifications (ECQs)”:
- Leading Change: bring about strategic change, both within and outside the organization, to meet organizational goals
- Leading People: lead people toward meeting “the organization’s vision, mission, and goals
- Results Driven: meet organizational goals and customer expectations
- Business Acumen: manage human, financial, and information resources strategically
- Building Coalitions: build coalitions internally and with other agencies, state and local governments, organizations, foreign governments, or international organizations
These 29 core competencies are arrayed in the table below.
Interpersonal Skills – Treats others with courtesy, sensitivity, and respect. Considers and responds appropriately to the needs and feelings of different people in different situations.
Oral Communication – Makes clear and convincing oral presentations. Listens effectively; clarifies information as needed.
Integrity/Honesty – Behaves in an honest, fair, and ethical manner. Shows consistency in words and actions. Models high standards of ethics.
Written Communication – Writes in a clear, concise, organized, and convincing manner for the intended audience
Continual Learning – Assesses and recognizes own strengths and weaknesses; pursues self-development.
Public Service Motivation – Shows a commitment to serve the public. Ensures that actions meet public needs; aligns organizational objectives and practices with public interests.
ECQ1 Leading Change
Creativity and Innovation – Develops new insights into situations; questions conventional approaches; encourages new ideas and innovations; designs and implements new or cutting edge programs/processes.
External Awareness – Understands and keeps up-to-date on local, national, and international policies and trends that affect the organization and shape stakeholders’ views; is aware of the organization’s impact on the external environment.
Flexibility – Is open to change and new information; rapidly adapts to new information, changing conditions, or unexpected obstacles.
Resilience – Deals effectively with pressure; remains optimistic and persistent, even under adversity. Recovers quickly from setbacks.
Strategic Thinking – Formulates objectives and priorities, and implements plans consistent with the long-term interests of the organization in a global environment. Capitalizes on opportunities and manages risks.
Vision – Takes a long-term view and builds a shared vision with others; acts as a catalyst for organizational change. Influences others to translate vision into action.
ECQ2 Leading People
Conflict Management – Encourages creative tension and differences of opinions. Anticipates and takes steps to prevent counter-productive confrontations. Manages and resolves conflicts and disagreements in a constructive manner.
Leveraging Diversity – Fosters an inclusive workplace where diversity and individual differences are valued and leveraged to achieve the vision and mission of the organization.
Developing Others – Develops the ability of others to perform and contribute to the organization by providing ongoing feedback and by providing opportunities to learn through formal and informal methods.
Team Building – Inspires and fosters team commitment, spirit, pride, and trust. Facilitates cooperation and motivates team members to accomplish group goals.
ECQ3 Results Driven
Accountability – Holds self and others accountable for measurable high-quality, timely, and cost-effective results. Determines objectives, sets priorities, and delegates work. Accepts responsibility for mistakes. Complies with established control systems and rules.
Customer Service – Anticipates and meets the needs of both internal and external customers. Delivers high-quality products and services; is committed to continuous improvement.
Decisiveness – Makes well-informed, effective, and timely decisions, even when data are limited or solutions produce unpleasant consequences; perceives the impact and implications of decisions.
Entrepreneurship – Positions the organization for future success by identifying new opportunities; builds the organization
Problem Solving – Identifies and analyzes problems; weighs relevance and accuracy of information; generates and evaluates alternative solutions; makes recommendations.
Technical Credibility – Understands and appropriately applies principles, procedures, requirements, regulations, and policies related to specialized expertise.
ECQ4 Business Acumen
Financial Management – Understands the organization’s financial processes. Prepares, justifies, and administers the program budget. Oversees procurement and contracting to achieve desired results. Monitors expenditures and uses cost-benefit thinking to set priorities.
Human Capital Management – Builds and manages workforce based on organizational goals, budget considerations, and staffing needs. Ensures that employees are appropriately recruited, selected, appraised, and rewarded; takes action to address performance problems. Manages a multi-sector workforce and a variety of work situations.
Technology Management – Keeps up-to-date on technological developments. Makes effective use of technology to achieve results. Ensures access to and security of technology systems.
ECQ5 Building Coalitions
Partnering – Develops networks and builds alliances; collaborates across boundaries to build strategic relationships and achieve common goals.
Political Savvy – Identifies the internal and external politics that impact the work of the organization. Perceives organizational and political reality and acts accordingly.
Influencing/Negotiating – Persuades others; builds consensus through give and take; gains cooperation from others to obtain information and accomplish goals.
Office of Personnel Management (n.d.), Senior Executive Service Executive Core Qualifications, at https://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/senior-executive-service/executive-core-qualifications/#url=Overview, accessed 26 February 2020.
Page created by: Ian Clark, last modified 26 February 2020.
Image: Office of Personnel Management (n.d.), Senior Executive Service Executive Core Qualifications, at https://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/senior-executive-service/executive-core-qualifications/#url=Overview, accessed 26 February 2020.