Breath of Clarity

Employee Development Plan

Customized Approach

The purpose of this document is to develop and empower a current waste water quality and operations employee by assigning them new tasks that improve their leadership skills. In order to create a customized employee development plan, it is optimal to thoroughly understand the person’s strengths and how they can be developed further. First of all, I commend the employee for authentically discussing their performance issues with me. According to Patrick Lencioni (2002), the employee’s courageous honesty in sharing their issues with a member of the executive team reveals they contain the leadership characteristic of integrity. Additionally, they were a great performer for over three years at the company. That said, according to George Manning (2014), they already embody the leadership characteristic of ability. However, they are feeling stagnant, rather than challenged, and as though they are doing the same old thing with no end in sight. There is potential to enhance their leadership by establishing their vision. Additionally, over the last 6 months, I have noticed that this worker is disengaged, showing up late, and using a lot of sick days. Evidently, there is room for development in terms of the employee’s vitality. Clearly, the employee is deeply lacking interest in their work.

Manning (2014) would identify the problem as burnout as the employee is experiencing stress from a work under load that is resulting in boredom, lack of meaning and low job satisfaction. In general situations involving burnout, Manning (2014) mentioned that a strategy to source motivation is foster a spirit of belonging and teamwork as people gain satisfaction from working with others and find social aspects of the workplace rewarding. Additionally, considering the employee is known for following through on work and is responding to the stressful situation by withdrawing, they would be motivated by others appealing to their logic (EBS University 2018).

Considering that the employee needs tangible evidence of progress and a sense of accomplishment, they would be motivated by having free reign in the establishment of their work tasks (EBS University 2018). Since the employee is creative, giving them the opportunity to make decisions and direct projects would be useful as they will create meaningful work assignments that allow them to be self-motivated (Manning 2014). Lea Cassar and Stephan Meir (2018) would echo that the design of one’s job can create meaning and purpose for employees. Since everybody defines success differently, people want to exercise their talents to attain success and need to have the agency to do so (Manning 2014). A shift to new responsibilities that support their career development will help the employee achieve their full potential.

Company Values

Here, at Pioneers LLC, the executive team values its staff. We see people as the organization’s most important resource (Manning 2014). We view work as a cooperative effort as we reinforce the idea that, by working together, people accomplish more. We are willing to invest in our employees based on the belief that everyone can be a leader. Our idea of leadership is shifting from a hierarchical toward a participatory model that recognizes the potential and unique contributions of everyone (Manning 2014). Given this employee’s strengths and challenges, the values within leadership that we are going to focus on in this development plan are ability, integrity, vision and vitality. In the process, we place a lot of value in having quality training programs grounded in statesmanship and appreciating failure as a stepping stone to success. Statesmanship is the ability to multiply personal accomplishments through the efforts of others by working through other people (Manning 2014). Also, a statesman seeks out the ideas and opinions of others and are able to involve others in decisions that affect them. Additionally, we train employees to see the value in failure rather than fear it. We instill a perception of failure as the opportunity to begin again, only more educated (Manning 2014). We support the staff members in persistently pursuing their full potential by facilitating the use of SMART goals to enhance their leadership characteristics and skills.

Smart Goals

A long-term solution that develops personal competencies, clarifies values and renews commitment is going to be most effective (Manning 2014). The employee’s SMART goal is to become the new official annual trainer of all four other specialty environmental positions and be certified to support the supervisor in all tasks within specialty environmental positions by December 31st 2022. Along the way, milestones include learning all of the training program content for each of the specialty environmental positions by March 31st 2022, designing the training program by May 31st 2022, performing all annual training requirements to the supervisor by June 30th 2022, editing the program design based upon the supervisor’s feedback by August 31st 2022, performing the all annual training requirements to the reports by September 30th 2022, gaining approval by the executive team to become the new official annual trainer by December 31, 2022, and passing the specialty environmental positions written certification test by December 31 2022. The goal supports the company’s values.

Above all, the SMART goal shows that the company values its staff. It acknowledges that the employee is being underloaded with the tasks in their current role and responds by adding to their workload. The decision to take action shows that the executive team values the employee as a resource because they created a pathway for career development to ensure the employee does not leave the company. They are also showing that they value their reports as resources by holding the incoming trainer to a high quality standard. The goal also recognizes that the company can accomplish more by delegating part of the supervisor’s duties to a staff member who needs to be challenged. The company is investing the time and energy to train the employee in four additional positions. The goal also challenges the employee’s ability as the leadership characteristic entails having a keen mind to understand information and know the job well (Manning 2014). Additionally, the goal creates high stakes for the employee to exercise their integrity. Manning (2014) highlighted that, without integrity, there is no trust which catalyzes a snowball effect resulting in respect, loyalty and ultimately action (Manning 2014). That said, the goal provides the employee with a newfound purpose. Finally, vitality is crucial to attain the goal. Considering the goal is quite monumental in terms of amount of required knowledge acquisition and quality standard, the employee will need to have strength and stamina to achieve all of the milestones (Manning 2014). Lastly, the supervisor is embodying statesmanship by training the employee in tasks that the supervisor excels at. The goal is also orchestrated to have the employee fail at perfectly performing all requirements to the supervisor so that they can develop throughout the year and achieve the end goal by the end of the year.


Cassar, Lea and Stephan Meier. 2018. “Non-monetary Incentives and the Implications of Work as a Source of Meaning”. The Journal of Economic Perspectives. 32(3): 215-238.

EBS University. 2018. “SELF-ASSESSMENT OF SOCIAL STYLES.” Assessment.pdf

Lencioni, Patrick. 2002. The Five Dysfunctions of a Team. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Manning, George. 2014. The Art of Leadership. New York: McGraw-Hill