Air Force launches year-long leader, supervisor development campaign

  • Published
  • By Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs

On April 1, the Department of the Air Force launched The Leaders and Supervisors We Need, a year-long development campaign designed to improve the efficiency and accessibility of supervisory training and resources for all leaders, ranging from first-time supervisors to experienced senior management officials.

“In the Air Force, civilian and military supervisors are more than managers – they are coaches and mentors; leaders and listeners; trailblazers and enablers,” said Gwendolyn DeFilippi, assistant deputy chief of staff, manpower, personnel and services, in a memo to Air Force leaders March 24. “Their continuity and invaluable expertise are essential in shaping the future of our force, and when given the resources and support needed, the teams they lead produce results that are nothing short of extraordinary.”

In the 2019 Office of Personnel Management federal employee viewpoint survey, results showed Air Force supervisors and leaders, military and civilian, could do better at maximizing the potential of their employees. Some of the challenges cited in the results include competing time demands, varying supervisor skills competency levels and inconsistent employee engagement.

As the chairperson for the civilian force development panel, DeFilippi charged the panel to find solutions to the challenges identified in the survey.

The CFDP developed a new website featuring short, digestible digital resources targeted at developing essential supervisory skills without monopolizing already encumbered time. Each of the next 12 months will focus on developing a specific area of a supervisor’s skill set through micro-learning opportunities, videos, fact sheets, reference materials and additional external resources.

“Ultimately, our goal is to ensure every Air Force civilian benefits from leadership that is equipped with the right tools and resources to support civilian career growth,” said Nancy J. Balkus, deputy director of civil engineers, headquarters Air Force, and the CFDP champion for this initiative. “This website enables supervisors, both military and civilian, to do just that.”

This campaign from the CFDP is one example of solutions produced through the Air Force’s force development institutional governance structure, as outlined in AFI 36-2640 Executing Total Force Management. This structure uses both broad and deep venues to vet institutional development policies and address specific current issues through the civilian, enlisted and officer force development panels.

More information about the campaign can be found at the CAC-enabled site: