COVID-19 Resources

Professional Service Agreement

The SESCO Report – March 2011

SESCO's Professional Development Institute — Developing Managers and Leaders

In the coming months, SESCO's Seminar Series will be made available to SESCO clients. Please visit SESCO's website at to view seminar dates, locations and topics.

SESCO has been developing managers and leaders since the early 50's. The original need was to develop leaders so that employees "turned to them" versus organized labor. Now, as global competition increases, the need for managers to achieve results in quick order produces a requirement to perform in every element of their work — how they manage themselves — how they manage others — and how they manage processes and behavior that achieve successful and profitable outcomes.

Managers and leaders are not born, they are developed over time. And all will agree that frontline management is one of the most difficult positions one can embark.

This journey to effective management begins in the early years of career development and is directed towards individual contribution. In this role, the emphasis is placed on technical skill requirements. The development of these skills brings them to a point where they are considered for a promotion to first line management.

At this point in the journey, technical skills are no longer sufficient. There is considerable difference between being an experienced individual contributor and developing into a professional manager and leader.

It is obviously much more than changing a job title, more of a case of transforming the role into new skill requirements and capabilities requiring the execution of critical responsibilities and achieving results. Many employees have excellent technical skills, but few have the potential to be good managers and leaders. This is where SESCO and SESCO's Professional Development Institute can provide the following:

Assist in assessing and ensuring employees selected for management have the desire and potential.

Assist in those first critical days of what it means to be a new manager/leader and, more importantly, establish a development plan to ensure success.

Help the individual understand his/her strengths as a leader as well as specific areas for improvement.

Help them understand others, recognizing that all employees are different and subsequently must be managed differently to include personalities and generations.

Equip them with the necessary skills/tools to ensure success — basic management skills/training and human resource management systems.

Following, you will find excerpts from our seminar series the "Effective Leader/Manager" as well as an overview of our Institute's training and leadership development opportunities.

We are extremely proud of our Institute including practical, hands-on training materials and certified trainers. We look forward to seeing you at one of our seminars or to discuss customized training programs onsite.

Excerpts from SESCO's "Effective Leader"


"Why recognize employees for doing what they're supposed do?"

This is the question that many managers ask when discussing employee recognition programs. In today's workplace, it is necessary to recognize the efforts of valued employees. It has been proven that when employees are rewarded for their day-to-day contributions, they work even harder. One might argue that recognition programs are silly, childish, and unnecessary when employees are already being "paid to do their jobs." This viewpoint has proven to grow poor results in terms of motivation, however.

Effective recognition involves rewarding the dependable and consistent performers which keeps our businesses running every day. With so much time spent in "putting out fires" and simply trying to complete "our own work," it is easy to take good performers for granted, letting "no news is good news" become our way of managing. Unfortunately, employees perceive that we do not value their performance.

The leader's job is to support the success of their employees. To do that, acknowledgment must be communicated daily.

1. Personalize your recognition and make it sincere Make sure your recognition is personal and sincere. Recognize specific results and behaviors and how they help your department or organization.

2. Enhance quality The more you recognize and reinforce positive behavior, the harder your team will work to get that recognition. Look for every opportunity even the small ones.

3. Be specific Rather than saying "Thanks for a great job," identify the behavior and how it matters. By showing employees how and why we appreciate their work, their own feeling of self-worth is increased and they are more likely to continue the desired behavior.


The key to successful leadership is following a consistent pattern of interacting with your team. Effectively handling difficult situations while increasing the performance of your work group can make the difference between your success and mediocre performance. The following are five key principles for successful leadership.

1. Always focus on the situation, the problem, or behavior — not the person.

2. Build the person's self-esteem.

3. Establish and maintain a constructive relationship.

4. Take initiative to make things better.

5. Lead by example.


Answer the following questions by thinking about the group that you supervise. How can you use the Basic Principles more effectively to build respect, trust, and commitment toward the organization and you as their supervisor?

1. What situation are you currently facing where you can apply Basic Principle #1 (Focus on the situation, issue, or behavior — not the person)?

2. In the situation above, how can you help maintain or build the self-confidence and self-esteem of your employees?

3. What are two things you could do in your current role as a supervisor that would develop more positive relationships with your employees, peers, and managers?

4. What are two things you could do in your current role as a supervisor, to make things better for your employees?

5. What specific thing could you do in your current role as a supervisor that demonstrates your ability to lead by example?


Morale is defined as the "...willingness to perform assigned tasks, cheerfulness and discipline." We often think that morale is tied directly to productivity when productivity is high, then morale must be high, whereas if morale is low so goes productivity. While there is a relationship between the two, morale can be more accurately tied to the relationship between the manager/supervisor and the employee.

Morale and motivation are often used synonymously. Motivation is the reason "why people do the things they do." So how can you motivate people and keep the morale level high? Unfortunately, studies have shown that you really cannot motivate another person. Motivation comes from within it is a result of a person's individual perceptions, needs, and desires. People can only motivate themselves. Having said that, it is important to realize that supervisors can have a direct impact on an individual's motivation by creating an environment within which a person will want to motivate him/herself.

Motivation can be defined as the act of getting a person or a group, each with his or her own distinctive needs and personality, to work to achieve the organization's objectives, while also working to achieve individual objectives. This is very different from manipulation, which is a process that moves people toward ends that the supervisor desires without regard for the feelings and needs of the employee. Manipulation often uses threats, short-term rewards, or promises. True motivation must be done with respect for the other person. It is accomplished by linking what the individual desires with the specific goals, tasks, and behaviors that the job requires.

"People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing — that's why we recommend it daily."
— Zig Ziglar

SESCO Public Seminars Feedback

"The Effective Leader/Manager was very informative. This will help me to be a more successful leader. Instructor was top notch, new material, very impressive."

"The instructor during the Human Resources: The Basic Course was very knowledgeable and interactive with our group, which kept things interesting."

"It was a good reminder of what we already know about HR and what we should be doing. Got a lot of ideas and hopefully will implement the necessary changes."

"The smaller classroom sized group made more discussion-provoking and enjoyable. I would recommend it to any supervisor."

SESCO's Spring Seminar Series 2011


March 9-10, 2011
Courtyard by Marriott

3169 Linden Drive
Bristol, VA 24201

March 16-17, 2011
Brown Distributing
7986 Villa Park Drive
Richmond, Virginia 23059

Using Your Management Style Effectively
Effective Leadership Skills
Practicing Performance Management
Setting Goals and Motivating Employees
Positive Approach to Discipline
Supervision Basics EEO, ADAAA, FMLA, EFCA, Wage Hour, Safety Compliance


April 6-7, 2011
Courtyard by Marriott
3169 Linden Drive
Bristol, VA 24201

April 13-14, 2011
Brown Distributing
7986 Villa Park Drive
Richmond, Virginia 23059

Pre-employment Recruiting, Screening, and Hiring
The Importance of Employee Handbooks and Clear Discipline Policies
Determining Pay Rates and Developing Compensation Systems
Effective Performance Appraisal Systems
EEOC and Wage-Hour Regulations and Practices
ADA, FMLA, COBRA, Workers' Comp Compliance

(SESCO has partnered with one of our valued clients, Brown Distributing, to host our Richmond Seminar Series)

Call 1-800-764-4127 to Register

Special Thanks to SESCO Clients!

North Carolina Rural Water Association
Welcome, NC

Skillman Services
Ipswich, MA

Lord Fairfax EMS Council, Inc.
Winchester, VA

Portsmouth Community Health Center
Portsmouth, VA

Blueridge Virginia EMS Council
Lynchburg, VA

Central Shenandoah EMS Council
Staunton, VA

First Care Health Services
South Boston, VA

Tidewater EMS Council
Norfolk, VA

SESCO Client Feedback

"Our employee handbook is updated and very comprehensive! My only recommendation maintain the excellence. SESCO acted very quickly and was very accommodating. Excellence at its peak!" ~ Jun Arbolado, Caregivers Home Health Services, Alexandria, VA

"Thank you so much! It is absolutely wonderful to have you as a resource!" ~ Cindy Cale, United Church Homes and Services, Newton, NC

SESCO Client Inquiry — Staff Response

Question: Can we use credit reports as part of our selection process?

Answer: Yes. However, the use of credit checks is recommended only for positions that require either handling money or having authority over spending large amounts of money. Otherwise, the person's financial condition is not likely to be relevant to the position. Conducting credit checks on applicants for all positions could be viewed as discriminatory.

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) makes it legal to procure a consumer report for employment purposes, but only if the consumer (applicant or employee) has been notified in a "clear and conspicuous" written disclosure prior to the consumer report request, and provided that the consumer has given written authorization for the report's procurement by the employer. FCRA also stipulates that information from the credit report will not be used in violation of either federal or state employment opportunity laws, and that the consumer is provided with a copy of the report as well as a copy of the consumer's rights under federal law.

SESCO's Professional Development Institute Training Programs

Human Resource Management in Perspective An Introduction
Recruiting/Selection and Screening
Developing a Compensation Plan
Wage-Hour Regulations
HR Compliance Issues
Total Performance Management
A Positive Approach to Discipline
Employee Handbook Development
Employee Recruitment and Retention
Overview of Basic Employment Regulations
Who Is A Leader?
Your Personality Profile and Management Style DiSC
Employee Motivation and Rewards Systems
The Art of Delegation
Employee Performance Management System
Decision Making and Problem Solving
How To Reduce Employment Liability
Maintain Positive, Union-Free Employee Relations
Harassment Awareness Management/Employee
Superior Customer Service
Vital Learning Training System (14 basic supervisory modules)