Leadership Training

I received an inquiry about training content on skills (skills development) for new Quality Supervisors and Managers. What do members suggest for training resources for new Quality Supervisors/Managers? Is there any content on skills (supervising, thinking, leadership) for new Quality Supervisors/Managers? If you have ideas, would anyone be interested in writing an article on this topic and posting here on MyASQ or writing something for the QMD Quality Forum?

12 Replies
Grace Duffy
111 Posts
I have a series of 5 supervisory training modules I used with the VA Hospitals some years ago that are still relatively current. We can look at those and tweak them to adjust for some new virtual approaches. The last of the five modules involves the quality tools.

Hello Susan,

For a new supervisor and manager we could state that the contents of de Quality Improvement Associate BOK and the Quality Process Analyst BOK edited by ASQ could be a good starting point regarding the points to be covered in a training program.

The traditional management skills (leadership, teamwork, negotiation, conflict management, communication, decision making and problem solving) are also in order for these. The level to provide would have to be determined. We should put emphasis in people skills (interaction with others).

In my experience, new supervisors and manager could benefit if trained in:

  • The concept of Process and Process Management and its relationship to costs in the operation and to quality in products and services.
  • The adequate way to observe a process and to take note of what happens in there. (Taiichi Onhno's circle, Genchi Genbutsu, etc.)
  • Critical thinking in order to question what they see (5 why's, 5W/2H, etc)
  • Systems thinking (the basis to understand that everything is connected and not isolated)
  • How to explain effectively (communicate ideas)
  • How to train (on the job training)
  • How to speak and present in public (in order to have meaningful interactions with upper management)

Just some preliminary thoughts. I will seek out time to elaborate on this topics.

Hello, Susan! When I train personnel in Leadership, regardless of their organizational position (e.g., executive, senior manager, frontline, etc.) or their discipline (e.g., engineering, healthcare, transportation, etc.), I have found that a systems approach is best. The system I created many years ago still has merit, and is based on the Malcolm Baldrige Quality/Performance Excellence criteria. The system has four constructs:, 1) Leadership/Followership, 2) Planning, 3) Teaming and Valuing, and 4) CQI (data collection, analysis, reporting, and managment; project management, and process improvement). For me, ‘leadership is getting good things done with the help of others’, so I invest a LOT of time driving the importance of communication, collaboration, and cooperation to create a shared vision and commitment.

Under the Leadership construct, there four elements:

1) Personal Mastery--Self Assessment 2) Talent Development-Helping People Help Themselves; 3) Performance Expectations-What Employees Need to Know and Do 4) Corporate Philanthropy and Civic Engagement--Giving back your time, talent and resources.

I have developed a number of creative tools and techniques for all of the constructs, and for the Performance Excellence system as a whole so that information is FUN, presented in bite sized pieces, and knowledge can be applied immediately.

I would be happy to work on a QMD article with someone, or at least share some of the tools I have created that could be used for leadership development. Yvonne

@Yvonne Howze I would love for you to turn this information into an article that our members can read and review. Please connect with me here on MyASQ. Perhaps we can even have it included in our Quality Forum (see link below).

Great discussion Susan! I would also add a previous analysis of the organization, maybe a survey or interviews to current supervisors and managers, in order to see what they consider important to include in the training and development of new colleagues.

Anastasis Alayon:

Great discussion Susan! I would also add a previous analysis of the organization, maybe a survey or interviews to current supervisors and managers, in order to see what they consider important to include in the training and development of new colleagues.

This is a great idea, thank you for contributing to the discussion.

We have started utilizing LinkedIn Learning to training our leaders and managers with learning paths that we can customize from learning topics that are suited to our needs. For example, I have chosen critical thinking, Minitab, RCA and other training topics. I think that LinkedIn Learning is a valuable resource to help us develop members in our organization.

Yvonne, I would love to connect with you and discuss your tools, then help with article if you want assistance. I have been a Baldridge examiner in Illinois and have adopted many concepts into my life! Thank you for posting!

Diana, thank you! I will followup with you later today.

Great posts. Soft skills are very important for new leaders. How new leaders can develop their soft skills such as thinking skills or emotional intelligence?


I have a question for you. Are you looking to train them as managers, leaders, or both. Because those are very different skill sets. We often train people in what we call leadership courses, when it fact what they are really taking are management courses. Leadership is sometimes defined as those skills needed to motivate people, while management is the process of ensuring things are done.

To reframe my original question, are you looking for management skills, leadership skills, or both. And I think that best way to begin this is to come up with a common definition of what is meant by management and what is meant by leadership. Because I will bet, almost everyone of the smart people on this discussion post will have slightly different interpretations of the two.

Leadership has been defined and redefined, and there is no one definition that tends to suit everyone. That said, I like to distinguish between leader and leadership. For leader, I like Stephen Covey's old definition: A leader is the person who climbs the tallest tree in the jungle, surveys the land, and hollers WRONG JUNGLE! That definition aligns with Harvard's definition of leadership that says: Leadership is inspiring others to greatness! Using that definition, and the one I stated in my original post, managers are leaders, too. Further, by those definitions, everyone in the organization can/should be a leader.

I said all that to say, for me, the difference between leadership and management or leader and manager is in the job duties, rather than the organizational position. Afterall, Alfred Sloan, CEO of GMC created the organizational chart in 1928, and we are still trying to use it when the climate seems to be calling for something else. Anyway, that'smy $2.79.