Supervisory Academy

The Cabrillo College Supervisory Academy is a 12-week program designed to help you develop your skills and become a better supervisor!

Being a supervisor presents numerous challenges and opportunities! In today's new work environment, you are expected to meet organizational goals with the people you supervise. We need to build resilience and flexibility to adapt to uncertainty and the constant change around us. Supervisors are now managing employees in person and/or remotely, therefore, better people management and clear communication are essential skills. Through each course, you will learn the tools, tips, techniques that will bring success in your interactions and build trust in your relationships.

Each course is designed to stand on its own and be of value. However, attending the entire 12-week program provides depth on a variety of topics that come together to provide a holistic strategy and process to the supervisory experience.

In our weekly meetings, you will learn:

  • Skills that will make you better prepared, organized and fulfilled by your role

  • Self-awareness and strategies to manage situations and people

  • Stress and conflict management

  • Effective communication to create a culture of trust and high performance

  • Motivational factors of individual employees and the collective team

  • Optimization of time management, team performance and results

  • Coaching techniques to maximize individual potential

Questions? Need assistance with registration or setting up your company profile? Call the Extension office at (831) 479-6331, and our friendly customer service staff will be happy to help!

Module 1
Being a Great Supervisor

Being a supervisor involves the fundamental ability to get things done through others. As a leader in your organization, you help set the tone, and you have the potential to make a positive impact on individuals, team contributions and organizational goals. In this course you will:

  • Understand the purpose, flow, and content offered in the supervisory academy.
  • Discuss the roles and responsibilities of an effective supervisor.
  • Identify the needs of employees and how to best meet each.
Module 2
Essential Communication Skills

Your communication style and habits have an impact on the "climate" of the organization. The way you communicate can influence employee motivation, the quality of information shared, and employee engagement. Clear communication provides the ability to set appropriate priorities, to minimize the risk of misunderstanding, and to improve time management. In this course you will:

  • Identify the reason for communication and how to tailor it to different people.
  • Utilize the Transactional Model to recognize functions and channels for communication.
  • Practice skills for creating the work environment you want by checking perceptions, listening, and using empowering language.
Module 3
Building Trust

As a supervisor, your ability to create and sustain a climate of trust is critical to your team's satisfaction and success. Trust is a bi-directional attribute of a healthy organization in which leadership, management, and employees create a clear channel of honest communication. Come to this class to:

  • Explore the critical relationships between trust, organizational performance, and success.
  • Define trust, and identify the specific behaviors that support it and decrease it.
  • Assess your role in creating a trusting workplace.
Module 4
Motivating Employee Engagement

The level of an employee's involvement and enthusiasm in the workplace defines engagement. This is a significant factor in an organization's success. A changing environment requires a supervisor who can truly tune in to what motivates individual employees. Whether the environment is uncertain, chaotic or stable, you encourage employees to show up at their best. Come to this class to:

  • Understand what engagement is and why it is so important.
  • Recognize your role in creating and promoting employee engagement.
  • Gain insight into four primary sources of motivation.
Module 5
Increasing Your Team's Effectiveness

Diversity in employees styles, skills, experience, and competence can be blended to achieve organizational results. When we understand the principles of effective teamwork, we can harness the power of unique perspectives to create a synergistic work team. Come to this class to:

  • Discuss the five components of effective teamwork and assess your team.
  • Identify the unique behaviors of your team members by using the DiSC profile.
  • Gain insight into four primary sources of motivation.
Module 6
Hiring the Right Employees

Finding a person that fits the organization and vice versa is an important first step in creating an effective team. Dynamic behavioral interview techniques can help us find the right people for the right jobs and mitigate the costly rate of turnover. Onboarding a new-hire properly ensures the individual is set up for productivity and success. Come to this course to:

  • Plan your recruitment strategy to support hiring the best candidate.
  • Develop job-related questions that identify the key position competencies.
  • Review various onboarding techniques and how and when to use them. 
Module 7
Managing Performance

Effective performance management starts with clear expectations and is reinforced through feedback and coaching support. When we set organizational, team, and individual goals, we understand the purpose in our daily tasks. Recognizing the purpose in our work is a source of motivation for high performance. In this workshop you will:

  • Determine why performance management is important and who's responsible for its success.
  • Review the Performance Management Cycle, noting the importance of the continuous process.
  • Practice the Plan phase of the PM cycle by setting goals that result in improved organizational success.
Module 8
Giving and Receiving Feedback

To truly improve performance, we need to create a culture of continuous feedback. Timely acknowledgment and redirection of mistakes provides a source of clear communication and therefore builds transparency and trust. In this class, you will:

  • Learn simple and powerful ways of giving feedback
  • Practice giving feedback
  • Utilize the L.A.S.T. model for receiving feedback
Module 9
Performance Evaluations

In the performance management cycle, a formal performance review may be required by your organization. To the degree that you have an ongoing feedback culture, this step is easier to conduct. A performance review provides the assessment necessary for aligning activity to organizational goals and for promotion or merit increases. Having a process to organize employee performance information enables you to cultivate fair and forward-looking conversations. These conversations lead to equitable work experiences and have the potential to re-energize employees. In this class you will:

  • Examine behaviors of high, mid, and low performance
  • Identify meaningful ways to delegate and address accountability
  • Gain insight into creating effective performance evaluations
Module 10
Managing Conflict

Handling conflict constructively can build trust in your relationships and increase your credibility. It can also stimulate new and better ideas that keep your workforce engaged. Effective conflict management stimulates a healthy feedback culture that encourages innovation and creativity. In this class you will:

  • Identify the costs and benefits of five responses to conflict.
  • Map a conflict using a new model.
  • Practice resolving a workplace conflict.
Module 11
Coaching for Employee Potential

Coaching is a crucial leadership skill for successful supervisors and combines building relationships, providing support and monitoring progress. Coaching allows you to develop an employee's potential by empowering them to gain the skills they need to succeed. This in turn helps your team and organization succeed. Come to this course to:

  • Understand the difference between proactive and reactive coaching.
  • Learn about the primary building block of good coaching: asking powerful questions.
  • Be able to coach someone toward development using the GROW coaching model.
Module 12
Supervisory Academy Roundtable

For all of those who have participated in the series, our final class will review the themes and concepts from the series, answer outstanding questions, and use a case study to highlight and implement all that we have learned. This capstone experience brings it all together so we can recognize and celebrate this continuous journey of learning!

About the Instructor

Jennifer Mount has over 15 years of experience in the design and facilitation of professional and leadership development curriculum. Her work has crossed the globe and many industries and has coached Fortune 500 Companies such as Microsoft, 3M, and Amgen as well as start-ups, non-profits, small businesses, and entrepreneurs to help enhance employee leadership skills and work performance.

To learn more about Jennifer, visit