Executive Skills Implementation Toolkit

Preparing to load PDF file. please wait...

0 of 0
100%
Executive Skills Implementation Toolkit

Transcript Of Executive Skills Implementation Toolkit

EXECUTIVE SKILLS IMPLEMENTATION TOOLKIT:
A Guide to Applying Executive Skills in Workforce Development Programs and Employment Social Enterprises
Developed with the support of The Annie E. Casey Foundation
1

TABLE OF CONTENTS
Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Tool #1: Organizational Readiness for an Executive Skills Approach. . . . 6 Tool #2: Environmental Modifications. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Tool #3: Executive Skills Knowledge. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Tool #4: Aligning SMART Goals and Executive Skills. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Sample: New Moms Daily TOP Values Form . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 Tool #5: Coaching Strategies to Support Executive Skills Struggles . . . . 24 Tool #6: Creating Executive Skills-informed Incentives. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 Sample: New Moms Learn & Earn List for Participants. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Tool #7: Executive Skills-informed Job Development. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 Sample: New Moms Packet for Employment Partners. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 Tool #7: Executive Skills-informed Job Development. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42
2

Applying an Executive Skills Approach in Your Workforce Development Program
IMPLEMENTATION TOOLKIT

WELCOME!
If you’re interested in learning about how Executive Skills can improve the impact of your Workforce Development Program, this toolkit can help. Developed by New Moms’ Workforce Development Program, these seven integrated tools walk frontline staff and program leaders through the core components of an Executive Skills Approach, all designed by and for Workforce Development practitioners. The enclosed tools guide you through reflective questions, tasks, and activities so you can consider why, what, and how you could affect the likelihood and rate at which participants progress towards and achieve their goals in your program.

New Moms piloted its Executive Skills (ES) Approach in 2016, and saw a rapid and notable improvement in participant outcomes. The approach resonated with participants and staff alike, and New Moms expanded the approach fully across its Job Training program and social enterprise, and scaled to New Moms’ Housing and Family Support programs. The implementation and expansion of New Moms’ ES Approach is detailed in this toolkit’s supplemental paper, the Executive Skills Implementation Case Study. While you can use the toolkit independent of the case study, we encourage you to use the tools and the case study in tandem: administer the tools while learning how New Moms applied these steps and processes directly into their programming, and how you can, too.

WHY TAKE AN EXECUTIVE SKILLS APPROACH?

The ES Approach is founded in a core belief that everyone has the

strength, ability, and potential to achieve their goals. Often Workforce

Development programs are striving to achieve externally-driven job-

related outcomes that intend to move the needle on a participant’s

or family’s economic mobility: credentials earned, hourly wage rate,

job retention, and more. An ES Approach helps participants progress

towards their short-term goals and sharpen their skills and capabilities to

succeed at work, at home, and in the community. The approach requires

a coaching mindset whereby staff partner with participants to create the

context and environment in which goal setting and progress can thrive,

while sharing knowledge, skills, training, and tools that participants

can use to progress towards their own goals. This goal progression is

Figure 1: New Moms’

an important form of impact that can have a significant effect on the

Executive Skills Approach

participant’s engagement in your program, their own self-confidence

and self-efficacy around goal setting and goal achievement, and ultimately, may support longer-term

wellbeing.

3

SETTING THE FOUNDATION FOR THE EXECUTIVE SKILLS APPROACH
Executive Skills are the twelve brain-based abilities that regulate how we plan things, organize things, and get things done. Awareness of how these skills manifest into behaviors lays the foundation for successfully designing and implementing your program’s Executive Skills Approach.
An Executive Skills Approach has five core components: Environmental Modifications, Executive Skills knowledge, coaching, SMART Goal tracking, and Incentives. All components have the same twofold goals: to reduce participant barriers to success, and increase the likelihood of participant goal achievement in their personal and professional lives. For more detailed information on the five components of an Executive Skills Approach in practice, please refer to the Executive Skills Implementation Case Study and the short, 7 minute overview video.
HOW TO USE THIS TOOLKIT
This toolkit will help you translate the five components of an Executive Skills Approach from theory into practice in your program. The tools are designed to be used in sequence, beginning with Tool #1 – Readiness Checklist, although many of the activities within the tools can be used at any time in your program, independently of other components of an ES Approach, and do not require significant prework or resources to adapt and use.
Four of the five interventions highlighted in the Executive Skills Approach figure above (see Figure 1) have specific tools listed below. In this toolkit, the fifth component in the Executive Skills Approach wheel, Executive Skill Coaching, refers to the application of all of these tools and strategies—as such there is no separate coaching tool.

APPLICATION OF THE TOOLKIT IN YOUR WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM
This generic Workforce Development program pathway displays an example of when and where each color-coded tool might be applicable.

Orientation & Intake

Onboarding

Job Readiness

Work Experience

Job Search

Job Placement

Retention

Tool #7: Matching Executive Skills with Job Development

Tool #4: SMART Goals

Tool #5: Coaching for Executive Skills Struggles

Tool #2: Environmental Modifications

Tool #3: Executive Skills Knowledge Tool #6: Incentives

4

TOOLKIT TABLE OF CONTENTS
An overview of each tool is listed below. Each tool is color coded for ease of maneuvering through the toolkit.
Click each Tool number to go directly to that page.

TOOL #1
Readiness Checklist Understand your organization’s or Workforce Development program’s readiness to move towards adopting an Executive Skills Approach or any of its components.
TOOL #2
Environmental Modifications Learn how to survey and modify your program environment—the physical space, materials, tasks, and processes and procedures—to alleviate barriers and support participant goal achievement.
TOOL #3
Executive Skills Knowledge Learn how Executive Skills develop and manifest as behaviors in a workforce development setting, and how to administer and guide a conversation with colleagues and participants about their Executive Skills Profiles.

TOOL #4
SMART Goals Learn how to set shorter-term SMART Goals that are a good fit with Executive Skills, in order to support increase goal achievement rates. Learn how to scaffold SMART Goals over time towards more complex long-term goals.
TOOL #5
Coaching for Executive Skills Struggles Learn how to support and mitigate common Executive Skills struggles with specific, concrete strategies devised for each Executive Skill.

TOOL #6
Incentives Learn about intrinsic and extrinsic motivations and how to align them with incentives that remove barriers, nudge progression to overcome obstacles, and reward success.
TOOL #7
Matching Executive Skills with Job Development Learn how to align Executive Skills strengths and struggles with tasks and behaviors required on the job. Find a good fit between employer partners and participants, reducing employee turnover and improving job retention.

Note to practitioners: An Executive Skills Approach also requires familiarity and practical application of Motivational Interviewing (MI) techniques. While not a tool in this toolkit, we refer to MI frequently and include resources for bolstering MI in your program. See the Appendix in Tool #1 – Readiness Checklist for more info on MI.

SHARE YOUR EXPERIENCE
Would you like to talk with New Moms about designing and applying an Executive Skills Approach into your Workforce Development program? Would you like support with this toolkit? Want to share your experience with these tools and an Executive Skills Approach? We would love to hear from you. Reach out to us and learn more about New Moms’ Research, Learning, and Innovation work at https://newmoms.org/what-we-do/research-learning-innovation/.
5

EXECUTIVE SKILLS IMPLEMENTATION TOOL #1
Organizational Readiness for an Executive Skills Approach

SUMMARY
An Executive Skills Approach, or independent components of the approach, can work in a variety of Workforce Development programs serving diverse populations of participants. This quick survey can help you assess the components of your broader organization’s culture, beliefs, systems, and practices in terms of readiness for an Executive Skills Approach. It will help you consider which aspects could create or detract from a strong foundation for an Executive Skills Approach to thrive in your organization.

HOW TO USE THIS TOOL
For each question, please select the answer that best describes your organization. Add up your overall score at the bottom of the survey to identify your organization’s readiness to pilot or implement an Executive Skills Approach or individual Executive Skills-informed interventions.
Many aspects of an Executive Skills Approach can be tested and implemented quickly into a Workforce Development program; implementing Executive Skills does not require wholesale commitment to the entire approach. For more information about how New Moms’ Workforce Development program prepared for its Executive Skill work, and examples of how each of the components of the Executive Skills Approach is applied in the program, please refer to New Moms’ Executive Skill Implementation Case Study.

COMPLETE YOUR READINESS SELF-ASSESSMENT
Organizational Culture and Infrastructure
1. Leadership: Your organization has buy-in from and leaders who promotes the value of new or promising practices for services that benefit your staff and participants over the value of the status quo.

1 Organizational leaders promote the status quo and do not seek growth in service
delivery methods. 2

Leaders in some departments are somewhat open to trying
new, promising practices.

3 Leaders agency-wide understand the value of trying new service approaches and support
testing ideas.

2. Flexibility & Change: Your organization has clear processes and strategies to guide change, as well as successful history of or experience with implementing programmatic changes.

1 Organization does not have processes, strategies, or successful experience implementing significant
change.

2 Some departments in the organization have processes, strategies, and successful experience
implementing significant change.

3 Organization has processes, strategies, and/or successful experience implementing significant
change.

6

3. Continuous Quality Improvement: Your organization has environment, policies, procedures, and tasks that can be adjusted and the systems and capacity in place to implement change.

1 Organization can not or is not interested in making changes to policies, programs and services, or
physical environment.

2 Organization has limited capacity, autonomy, and interest in making changes to its policies, programs and services, or
physical environment.

3 Organization has or can create l capacity, autonomy, and interest in making changes to its policies, programs and services, or physical
environment.

4. Staff training: Your organization dedicates time and effort to providing ongoing staff training in service strategies and approaches.

1 Organization does not dedicate time to or organize staff training to service approaches
during work hours.

2 Organization dedicates occasional time and effort to staff training on service approaches
during work hours.

3 Organization dedicates time and coordinates frequent and strategic staff training on service approaches
during work hours.

5. Strengthening Executive Skills: Your organization recognizes the benefit to strengthening Executive Skills in your priority population, and the need to support these skills through changes to the organization’s systems, approach, and environment.

1 Organization does not recognize the benefit of strengthening Executive Skills nor the external context in
which they develop.

2 Organization occasionally recognizes the benefit of strengthening Executive Skills and/ or the external context in which they
develop.

3 Organization recognizes the benefit
of both strengthening Executive Skills and the external context in
which they develop.

Organizational Beliefs and Practices

6. Trauma Awareness: Your organization understands the effects of scarcity, toxic stress, and trauma on brain development and behavior and embeds trauma-informed care into operations, practices, and services.

1 Organization does not recognize or discuss the impact of scarcity and
trauma on stakeholders.

2 Organization acknowledges the impact of scarcity and trauma and is beginning to implement or has some trauma-informed practices in some
departments.

3 Organization discusses scarcity and trauma and embeds trauma-
informed care in operations, practices, and services.

7. Growth Mindset: Your organization overall has a growth mindset, with staff who believe in the potential for their program, colleagues, organization, and participants to grow and change over time.

1 Organization and majority of program staff has fixed mindset that people are limited in their potential
for growth and change.

2 Organization and program staff sometimes has a growth mindset, and sometimes a fixed mindset about potential for growth
and change.

3 Organization and program staff
seek out growth and change, and consistently maintain growth mindset even in face of setbacks.

7

8. Participant-centered: Your organization is committed to supporting participants as they identify and progress towards the goals they set for themselves and their families.

1 Not at all participant-centered.

2 Somewhat participant-centered.

3 Very participant-centered.

9. Motivational Interviewing: Your organization is familiar with and practices Motivational Interviewing techniques that help participants identify and reflect on their choices, goals, and possibilities for their futures.

1 Organization is not at all familiar with or practicing Motivational
Interviewing techniques.

2 Organization is, or some departments are, somewhat familiar with or practicing Motivational Interviewing techniques.

3 Agency-wide, all departments in organization are familiar with and practicing Motivation Interviewing
techniques.

10. Stages of Change: Your organization is familiar with how individuals move through the Stages of Change, and implications on motivation and goal progression.

1 Organization is not at all familiar with Stages of Change
and its implications.

2 Organization is, or some departments are, somewhat familiar
with the Stages of Change and its implications.

3 Agency-wide, all departments in organization are familiar with the Stages of Change and its
implications.

TOTAL YOUR SCORES ABOVE. YOUR SCORE IS: ___________

CHECK BELOW TO SEE THE NEXT STEPS THAT MIGHT SUIT YOUR ORGANIZATION AND PROGRAM If you scored You might take the following steps:

25-30

• Engaging your colleagues in conversations about each of these questions. Ask yourself and them: What do they want to learn more about? How do they see each element showing up in their work? Does your team want to improve participant outcomes, and do they see any ways their new learning could help them do that?
• Review the Executive Skills implementation Case Study and additional, supplemental tools.
• Move forward with Tool #2: Environmental Modifications.

16-24

• Determining which core concept(s) are less familiar or comfortable for your staff and reading the corresponding resources listed in the appendix below.
• Engaging your colleagues in conversation about each core concept that they read about. Ask yourself and them: What does this new learning spark in us? How does this new information or element show up in their work? How might they imagine this work applying to improve participant outcomes?
• Review New Moms Executive Skills implementation case study and additional, supplemental tools.
• Review New Moms Executive Skills Pilot White Paper.
• Review the suggested reading in the appendix below.
• Move forward with Tool #2: Environmental Modifications.

8

Below 15

• Review New Moms Executive Skills implementation case study and additional, supplemental tools
• Review New Moms Executive Skills Pilot White Paper.
• Review the suggested reading in the appendix below.
• Encourage a peer, peers, or your supervisor to read the Executive Skills Implementation Case Study with you and discuss the areas that are most interesting to you—and why.
• Engaging your colleagues in conversation about each core concept that they read about. Ask yourself and them: What does this new learning spark in us? How does this new information or element show up in their work? How might they imagine this work applying to improve participant outcomes?
• Engage with your supervisor about one of these core concepts­—or more. Which will they be open to discussing with you? Which ones will create gains for them in their objectives?

READINESS CHECKLIST APPENDIX

Concept

Resources

Trauma, Toxic Stress, and Scarcity

• Review the Guide Aces and Toxic Stress: Frequently Asked Questions by the Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University
• Read the book Scarcity: Why Having Too Little Means So Much by Sendhil Mullainathan and Eldar Shafir
• Read the article Poverty Interrupted: Applying Behavioral Science to the Context of Chronic Scarcity by ideas42
• Read the article How Poverty Taxes the Brain by Emily Badger
• Read the brief Using Brain Science to Design New Pathways out of Poverty, by EmPath’s Elisabeth Babcock

Growth Mindset

• Read the article Harnessing the Power of High Expectations by EmPath’s Elisabeth Babcock
• Read the book Mindset by Carol Dweck • Access the resources, videos, and worksheets on the MindsetWorks website

Participant-centered
Motivational Interviewing

• Watch the webinar on Family-Centered Coaching from The Prosperity Agenda and Aspen Institute
• Watch the short Coaching Up Close webinars from The Prosperity Agenda
• Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers (MINT)—including access to staff training opportunities
• Family Centered Coaching Readiness Assessment • Motivational Interviewing Pocket Guide

Stages of Change

• Review this outline of the Stages of Change from Virginia Tech • Watch this video on Stages of Change

9

EXECUTIVE SKILLS IMPLEMENTATION TOOL #2
Environmental Modifications

SUMMARY
Sometimes our Workforce Development programs themselves get in the way of participant success. Modifying our program environments—the physical space as well as the policies, processes, materials, technology, and tasks we ask of participants—can decrease the cognitive tax on participants and give them more bandwidth to align their behaviors with their motivations and focus on progression towards their goals. Removing environmental barriers to success can increase program engagement, and is a practical, and often inexpensive and quick, method to increase the likelihood of participants’ goal achievement. Participants who learn how to modify their own environments will be more likely to achieve their goals, and more likely to succeed in their subsequent place of employment.
HOW TO USE THIS TOOL
This tool outlines the categories of Environmental Modifications your Workforce Development program, coaches, and individual participants can explore to decrease barriers to success, increase engagement, and improve goal achievement. Although Executive Skills knowledge is not necessary to devise and apply Environmental Modifications, it is beneficial to understand the link between Executive Skills and behaviors so you can target the modification for the specific behavior. You can learn more about Executive Skills knowledge in Tool #3 – Executive Skills Knowledge, as well as this toolkit’s complementary Executive Skills Implementation Case Study.
Job Developers can also use this tool when partnering with certain employers, in order to consider or suggest modifications that might help a recently hired graduate of your program more likely to succeed on the job and retain their employment.
ENVIRONMENTAL MODIFICATIONS IN YOUR WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM
Environmental Modifications are as varied as programs, and can be applied at any point in your Workforce Development program’s service delivery flow. We encourage you to think about environmental modifications from a participant’s very first touch point with your program, in order to decrease barriers to access your program and increase the likelihood of program persistence through this early period when attrition levels can be high. An example of where you can apply Environmental Modifications in your Workforce Development Program is below, starting even before participants are enrolled in your program.

Orientation & Intake

Onboarding

Job Readiness

Work Experience

Job Search

Job Placement

Retention

Tool #2: Environmental Modifications

For more information about and examples of how New Moms uses Environmental Modifications in our Workforce Development program please refer to New Moms Executive Skills Implementation Case Study.

10
OrganizationExecutive Skills ApproachExecutive SkillsParticipantsChange