Washoe Leadership Program - Cultivating employee growth

by Washoe County, NV for the TLG 2019 Innovation Showcase program

Dec 19, 2018

Theme: Extensive Internal Collaboration

The Washoe Leadership Program (WLP) originated from Washoe County's Strategic Planning process. The Strategic Goal of Valued and Engaged Workforce identified the need to focus on simplified workflows to improve service delivery and customer service; with a Board of County Commission's directed objective to develop a culture of Yes”.

Launched in December 2016, the WLP is an employee-led engagement program that supports leadership, collaboration, service, communication, and appreciation. The objectives of the program are to: 

- Encourage and facilitate professional development; 

- Provide opportunity for employees to build relationships and collaboration within and across departments; 

- Encourage and facilitate a customer service culture;  

- Support leadership opportunities; and  

- Committee specific outcomes.   

Key components of employee engagement are represented by six committees, each with specific missions, goals and objectives. These committees are Giving & Volunteering, Training, Learning and Leadership, Customer Service, Recognition, Events, and Employee Communication. The WLP committees identify, design, coordinate and execute projects across the organization. From the initial program design, through our on-going development, significant efforts have been made to ensure that the program is employee-led and projects initiated are for and by employees.

In our second year, we focused on developing a sustainable program model and strengthening leadership opportunities.  This led to shared program management and coordination by the Office of the County Manager, Human Resources, and significant coordination provided by the leadership roles within each committee including the: chair, vice-chair, treasurer, and secretary, webmaster, subject matter expert, and advisor.   

By investing in the people who make our programs happen, we created the opportunity to unlock fresh ideas, innovations and efficiencies, and communicated the standard for customer service, all with employees taking the lead. In doing so, a unique culture that attracts the people who are passionate about our impact, was created. 

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