In a previous post, we presented the theory that leaders are not born, they are made. They are made by the individual intentionally learning and putting into practice the competencies that are required to lead and direct others. A manager who works for a public agency, such as a water district or sewer district, has been entrusted with millions of dollars in public assets and are expected to operate and maintain these facilities to the best of their ability. It takes a lot of people working together as a team to operate your facilities in the most cost effective and efficient manner. This requires great leadership ability on the part of managers and supervisors to accomplish the required work by directing and motivating the workforce on a daily basis.
The days of “leading by intimidation” are over. Today’s leader needs a skill set that allows him/her to earn the respect of those he/she leads rather than relying on coercion or intimidation to get the work done. In the training provided by American Water College, the student is taught to identify his or her leadership strengths and to build on them by creating a plan of action for professional development in the area of leadership.