First Time Supervisors

Customized Training for First-Time Supervisors

Course Title

Succeeding as a First-Time Supervisor:
a program for those new to supervising the work of others

Course Length

One day (7 hours, including lunch)

Course Preview
You have just promoted one or more employees to supervisory positions.

What next? Although they excelled in their previous jobs, their skills may not be exactly the ones they'll need to make good supervisors. This seminar will help ease their move into management and increase their chances at success.

They'll learn specific strategies that they can apply immediately. They'll learn essential skills needed to handle difficult personnel problems, confront a crisis with confidence, and keep their staffs motivated, focused, and productive.

Who Should Attend

This program is for those who

  • are new to a supervisory role
  • oversee the work of one or more employees
  • wish to increase their knowledge and skills as first-time leaders


You can choose from the topics below to design a one-day seminar designed to meet the needs of your new supervisors. We suggest you select between 4 and 6 modules, rather than try to cover all of them, for the one-day training.

* Leadership Theories and Situational Leadership
Several leadership theories will be introduced in this module, including Hershey and Blanchard’s Situational Leadership model, and five practices from Kouzes and Posner’s The Leadership Challenge. A discussion of formal versus informal leadership will be included.

* Motivating, Rewarding and Recognizing Employees
One element of creating a positive work environment is rewarding and recognizing employees. In this session, participants will learn factors to consider in determining appropriate rewards and motivating employees.

* Delegation
Delegation does not mean telling people what to do. This module will focus on strategies for learning to delegate, and discussions of empowerment, risk taking, and trust.

* Problem Solving
Problems can be opportunities in disguise. This session provides strategies for problem solving and decision making. An eight step problem-solving model will be introduced, and participants will learn group decision-making techniques.

* Discipline
Dealing with performance problems can be a challenging situation for supervisors. In this session, key principles of setting performance expectations, monitoring performance, and consistency in discipline through a progressive discipline program are discussed.

* A Day in the Life of a Supervisor
Through the use of case studies, participants will discuss real work situations that supervisors may encounter. Strategies for applying good management practices and remaining “legally sound” will be discussed.

* Conducting Performance Evaluations
Providing effective feedback to employees is an essential function of supervision. Participants will learn a model for creating an on-going employee development program and will identify their role in conducting performance evaluations.

* Planning and Organizing (Tools and Techniques)
The importance of setting goals and objectives is critical to the planning process. The principles of effective planning will be introduced, including establishing “smart” goals, strategic, tactical, and operational planning, and evaluating alternatives. Participants will learn several tools to utilize in effective planning.

* An Overview of Employment Law
A brief overview of current employment laws that impact the workplace will be provided in this session. Participants will gain an understanding of these laws and their accountabilities as a supervisor in local government.