Leadership competencies in the BC Public Service

Last updated: November 18, 2021

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Learn more about senior leadership competencies by selecting a category:

Leading people

Motivating for peak performance involves knowledge and skills in using motivational techniques such as job design, role clarification, reward systems and performance appraisal to motivate optimum subordinate performance.

This job requires the following most of the time:

  • Creates a work environment where employees are challenged and fulfilled
  • Recognizes and rewards good performance in the unit
  • Assigns tasks and responsibilities in a manner consistent with subordinates’ interests and abilities without compromising unit objectives
  • Distributes rewards to subordinates fairly and clearly communicates the distribution rationale

Promoting empowerment involves knowledge and skills in using processes such as delegation and information sharing to enhance subordinate ownership and empowerment over their task and performance.

This job requires the following most of the time:

  • Looks for opportunities for delegation to occur in the unit whenever possible
  • Empowers employees to take risks, supports them when things go wrong and encourages them to learn from setbacks and failures
  • Gives subordinates the authority and resources to get the job done when assigning responsibility for task accomplishment
  • Holds subordinates responsible for the successful completion of tasks assigned

Developing people involves knowledge and skills such as mentoring, performance evaluation and feedback, career planning and coaching to enhance subordinates growth and development.

This job requires the following most of the time:

  • Provides subordinates with feedback on their performance and supports their improvement efforts
  • Provides all subordinates with opportunities to advance their skills
  • Focuses on both the satisfactory and unsatisfactory aspects of work performance when giving feedback to employees
  • When giving feedback, provides suggestions and coaching for future development

Building team orientation involves knowledge and skills in developing group identity, participative decision making and open and effective communication.

This job requires the following most of the time:

  • Creates teams that have the right mix of people, values all team members and recognizes each team member’s unique contribution
  • Fosters team cohesion by getting involved in the day to day events of the unit
  • Provides the information the teams need to achieve their goals and objectives
  • Involves team members in decision making when their commitment is important for implementation


Achieving business results

Vision and goal setting involves knowledge and skills in establishing official and operative goals for the organization/units and to establish a system of measuring effectiveness of goal attainment.

This job requires the following most of the time:

  • Develops a vision for the unit and translates this vision into action
  • Communicates corporate goals and objectives within the unit
  • Aligns unit tasks and objectives with corporate goals and objectives
  • Establishes clear targets and measures to track progress toward unit objectives

Designing strategy and structure involves knowledge and skills in the analysis of the environment, size of the organization, strategy and use of technology.

This job requires the following most of the time:

  • Takes constraints and opportunities into account when setting goals and making plans for the unit
  • Organizes people and resources in the unit to make the structure compatible with the unit’s strategic plan
  • Adopts appropriate work methods, systems and processes for achieving unit goals
  • Ensures that the unit’s goals, structure, strategy and work methods all fit well together (are compatible with each other)

Creating and managing change involves knowledge and skills to manage in the organization through setting direction and urgency, building a coalition of support, communicating widely, handling resistance to change and facilitating implementation of successful change actions.

This job requires the following most of the time:

  • Develops and uses different methods to help employees to positively react to change
  • Actively embraces change efforts and initiatives to improve unit performance
  • Works with others to identify creative ideas to manage change in the unit
  • Works to build support, remove organizational barriers and get the necessary resources to implement change

Corporate intrapreneurship focuses on venture creation, governance, differentiation and integration of new ventures within the organization.

This job requires the following most of the time:

  • Pursues opportunities on behalf on the unit within the organization for new areas of activities
  • When dealing with the new challenges or initiatives, moves forward in the face of incomplete or unclear information and adapts along the way
  • Takes the lead in addressing risky situations/problems
  • When faced with setbacks and discouragement in a new project, searches for solutions to keep the project going


Personal effectiveness

Seeking and using feedback involves knowledge and skills of seeking and using feedback from other to improve one’s performance and authenticity. This requires active listening and modeling personal change in order to foster trust in the whole organization.

This job requires the following most of the time:

  • Seeks feedback on performance
  • Changes behaviour in response to feedback
  • Responds undefensively to negative feedback
  • Reflects on own performance and identifies area for improvement

Fostering trust involves knowledge and skills to build and sustain trust in an organization and between the leader and his/her colleagues, through integrity, concern for others and consistent behaviour, following through on commitments and open communications.

This job requires the following most of the time:

  • Treats people in a consistent way in the unit
  • Keeps promises made to the people in the unit
  • Provides opportunities for employees in the unit to express opinions and influence outcomes
  • Demonstrates understanding and consideration for the needs and interest of people in the unit

Solving problems creatively involves knowledge and skills in fostering creative problem solving in the organization through critical reflection, problem analysis, risk assessment and rewarding innovation.

This job requires the following most of the time:

  • Uses innovative methods and technologies to get things done
  • Reframes or restructures problems in a different way, when necessary, to solve them
  • Is willing to try radically different ways of solving a problem even if it has never been done before


Interpersonal relationships

Building strategic alliances involves knowledge and skills to engage in internal and external stakeholder analysis and to negotiate agreements and alliances based on a full understanding of power and politics.

This job requires the following most of the time:

  • Builds multiple external collaborative relationships to support unit performance
  • Identifies and accommodates external political activities that could affect the work and success of the unit
  • Takes political and organizational realities into account when dealing with issues
  • Identifies the key issues and accommodates the key players when dealing with external parties/units on joint projects

Negotiating/conflict management involves knowledge and skills to engage in 2 party/multi-party negotiations and to facilitate third party intervention or mediation into conflict situations.

This job requires the following most of the time:

  • Builds consensus and seeks the cooperation of others when working with other parties/units
  • Recognizes and manages difficult relationships by stressing the importance of valuing diverse viewpoints
  • Manages conflict by focusing on participants underlying interests rather than their stated positions
  • Deals with issues rather than personalities and does not make things personal in negotiation with external units

Communicating effectively involves good presentation skills (verbal and written), careful listening, problem framing and use of presentation technologies.

This job requires the following most of the time:

  • Is clear and convincing when making presentations to external audiences
  • Adapts presentation to the audience when speaking or presenting
  • Listens carefully to different audiences in order to understand their key points and major concerns
  • Frames issues so that different audiences can understand them

Handling crises involves effectively managing risks and crises and handling public relations.

This job requires the following most of the time:

  • Prevents crisis situations by paying attention to warning signs
  • Involves the appropriate people when planning response and/or recovery activities for a crisis or in anticipation of one
  • Makes decisions and take action to deal with the problems during crisis situations


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