Working in higher education, specifically student affairs, we have a great number of theories, standards and practices that have long been used within our field. Specifically, I work in Residence Life, and student development theory guides the work we do, mostly in terms of working with students. One of my biggest concerns that I have observed throughout my career is that there needs to be a stronger focus on how we train, develop and coach our full time and professional staff.  We do this very well with our undergraduate and graduate staff members and after that point there is a gap and drop off in doing this intentionally.  To provide a solid foundation we developed a set of competencies and tools to help those that supervise our full-time professional staff members to bridge this gap and continue with intentional development for staff. 

Tying our competencies into a full cycle of our processes roots them as a foundation for our development. Our competencies are woven into our hiring and recruiting; orientation, on-boarding and training functions; on-going professional development and finally our evaluation processes. 

Want to learn more? Comment below or consider attending ASTD 2012 where you can hear Teri Engelke at her session, " Creating a Competency Based Learning Organization in Higher Education", which is part of the Higher Education Session Track. During the session she will talk more about how we created and utilized competencies as a foundation for our learning organization and how competencies and other theories can work in harmony!  Hope to see you there!