My Coast Guard
Commentary | May 6, 2021

Coast Guard advances inclusive leadership commitment to its workforce with updates to Leadership Competencies  

By Janki Patel, MyCG Writer

To embed inclusive leadership in the Coast Guard’s workforce, improve professional development, and sustain positive cultural change within the service, four of the Coast Guard’s 28 leadership competencies have been updated. The revised competencies include a basis for Coast Guard leaders at all levels to grow in their inclusive leadership skills and emotional intelligence by applying an equity mindset that strengthens the Coast Guard and the experiences of its members. 

The Leadership Competencies are used throughout the Coast Guard as a key component of personnel development and formal leadership training, and are a resource for supervisors and members to understand what the Coast Guard expects of its leaders. 

The Leadership Competencies are laid out in the Leadership Development Framework, which applies to active duty, civilian, auxiliarists, first-line supervisors, mid-level managers, senior managers, and executives within the Coast Guard. 

Leadership and diversity and inclusion subject matter experts and practitioners from across the Coast Guard researched and developed the updates under each of the four categories within the framework: 

  • Leading Self 
  • Self-awareness and learning 
  • Leading Others 
  • Cultural fluency 
  • Leading Performance and Change 
  •  Inclusive collaboration  
  • Leading the Coast Guard 
  • Talent acquisition and employee development  

“The updated competencies align with the Coast Guard's commitment to growing and retaining a diverse and inclusive workforce,” said Cmdr. Julie P. Kuck, chief of the Office of Leadership. “Our Coast Guard Leadership Competencies provide the core framework for the continual leadership growth required to support our workforce and the mission of the World’s Best Coast Guard.” 

The revised competencies are “Self-Awareness and Learning” ( Leading Self ), “Cultural Fluency” (Leading Others), “Inclusive Collaboration” ( Leading Performance and Change), and “Talent Acquisition and Employee Development” ( Leading the Coast Guard).   

The research that informed these updates included benchmarking comparable policies in the Department of Defense, the Department of Human Services, and private sector organizations related to inclusive leadership, diversity and inclusion, and retention. 

These new competencies are only one component in the Coast Guard’s larger toolkit to accomplish diversity and inclusion transformation at the unit level.   

Coast Guard leadership courses will be revised to include these new leadership competencies. 

The Coast Guard developed the job aid to help its leaders ask introspective questions and guide them through these four new  leadership competencies with questions and reflection prompts.  .  

Questions? Contact Cmdr. Julie Kuck in the Office of Leadership.

Stay up-to-date on the updated leadership development opportunities on the Office of Leadership website and MyCG leadership development resources