Technical Report: Advanced Technical Leadership

Report No: Technical Report SERC-2015-TR-101

Report Name: Advanced Technical Leadership

Publication Date: 17 July 2015


Executive summary:

The purpose of the Advanced Technical Leadership research task was to transition curriculum content for SYS 350A Systems Lens to DAU for their use in preparing systems engineers and technical leaders in the DoD acquisition community to assume key leadership positions in the future. The SYS 350A material had previously been developed, tested, refined and validated under the Technical Leadership Development Program. The 350A approach and its associated course material were recommended for transition and accepted by DAU at the end of FY 12 based on feedback from DoD acquisition professionals and DAU faculty who participated in one of three SYS 350A pilots conducted during FY 11 and 12. Two additional SYS 350 courses, SYS 350B Business Lens and SYS 350C Enterprise Lens, were also validated under Research Task “Developing Systems Engineering Technical Leadership” and recommended for transition at the end of FY 13. These two courses are being transitioned under a separate SERC research task, Technical Leadership.

The transition process occurred in four steps. First, a third student pilot of SYS 350A was delivered at DAU Ft. Belvoir from January 16-19, 2015 using the same SERC instructors (faculty from Stevens Institute of Technology) and the same course material as that validated during the FY 12 pilots. Participants in the January pilot included 23 senior acquisition leaders from all four services and the Missile Defense Agency, and six DAU instructors who had been identified as candidates to deliver the course going forward. Next, the DAU instructors reformatted the course material to comply with DAU standards, refined it to incorporate lessons learned from the January pilot and adapted it to match their own instructional style. The DAU instructor team then delivered a fourth student pilot at DAU South in Huntsville, AL from May 4-8, 2015. Finally, at a joint meeting between the SERC team and the DAU team was conducted on June 24, 2015 at DAU Ft. Belvoir, the DAU and Stevens teams worked to consolidate lessons learned from the May pilot and to assess the success of the task.