On June 22, Sue Kalweit, Senior Associate for Culture and Leadership Excellence at NGA, joined INSA EVP John Doyon for a Tuesday morning Coffee + Conversation. To open the discussion, Ms. Kalweit provided an update of NGA’s posture vis-a-vis the pandemic. The NGA workforce is fully reconstituted and safety measures are being removed or relaxed as more of the workforce becomes fully vaccinated. The pandemic forced NGA to shift to telework. In response, the organization identified projects, initiatives, and lessons learned during the pandemic that should be preserved in today’s environment. The flexibility afforded by telework has greatly benefited the NGA workforce and enabled many employees to care for dependents at home.
In her new role at NGA, Ms. Kalweit is charged with conducting an organization-wide Culture Assessment that includes an action plan for evolving NGA’s culture to consistently reflect its stated values of “who they are” as rooted in their Core Values of EARTH (excellence, accountability, respect, teamwork, and honesty), and “how they work” as reflected in their cultural values of collaboration, inclusion, innovation and agility. She explained that for NGA to realize its full potential and successfully pivot to great power competition and achieve its aspirational “Moonshot,” NGA requires everyone to contribute all of who they are and what each teammate brings to the Agency and the GEOINT mission every day.
Culture, defined as the collective regard, drives organizational performance. In her Culture Assessment, Ms. Kalweit aims to include summaries of the health of NGA’s culture, symptomatic culture problems, root issues of these problems, and a set of recommendations to address these root issues and move NGA toward its aspirational culture end state.
Ms. Kalweit also leads NGA’s Leadership Development program. The existing program has a robust list of courses for leaders at all levels in NGA based on a competency model that NGA researched and developed. Ms. Kalweit is developing an approach that will weave leadership learning and development into the everyday, from hire to retirement, where and when needed with practice and feedback opportunities. NGA currently has an RFI requesting industry feedback on capabilities that will help Ms. Kalweit’s team achieve this vision.