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CFIA leadership competency dictionary
Delivery expertise

Operational effectiveness

Shows commitment to continuous improvement by aligning systems and processes to CFIA's goals of generating scientific, health, social and environmental benefits to Canadians. Implements and monitors efficient work practices, manages and allocates financial and people resources to execute business plans and leverage operational targets. Organizes effectively the activities of others (and self), including developing and coordinating operational plans and achieving business goals according to approved principles and within agreed parameters.

Illustrative behavioural indicators:

Level EX 4 and above - Drives a culture of excellence and high performance across the Agency

  • Champions the on-going spirit of continuous business improvement and efficiency across the organization.
  • Articulates a vision for operational excellence that spans the whole of the Agency.
  • Translates government priorities into Agency strategies, outcomes and objectives to enable the organization's success.
  • Acts with energy and determination in achieving overall objectives towards a high performing organization.
  • Creates a work culture in which all systems and processes support high levels of excellence and are used to motivate employees to achieve goals.

Level EX 3 - Defines strategies that drive business performance across units to maximize future success

  • Thinks ahead: Drives operational excellence in upcoming projects that span more than one work unit.
  • Aligns personal, organizational, and functional strategies to mobilize the organization to capitalize on latent and emerging trends and/or demands.
  • Commits significant resources in the face of uncertainty to deliver increased future value to CFIA.

Level EX 2 - Implements systems that enhance current performance

  • Diligently aligns systems and processes to CFIA's goals of generating scientific, health, social and environmental benefits to Canadians.
  • Identifies significant personal and/or organizational resources to achieve performance standard, managing any associated difficulties, and/or uncertainties.
  • Stands by initiatives that benefit the larger organization even if they are controversial.
  • Diligently seeks new opportunities to improve business outcomes, using innovative (unique/original/untried) approaches to overcome obstacles and surpass performance.
  • Uses a cost/benefit analysis and measurement to commit resources to improve organizational performance.

Level EX 1 - Optimizes and improves performance

  • Conducts post-mortems on projects to implement improvements for the next time.
  • Takes the lead or the responsibility for delivering efficiently on initiatives.
  • Acts to optimize work processes.
  • Applies effective problem solving to establish and maintain new performance standards.
  • Encourages process improvement by reviewing current approaches and suggesting improvements and or consistency.
  • Enforces standards to maximize or raise performance; insists on high performance for self and others.
  • Implements tools that assure quality in executions.

Level EX minus 1 - Sets standards of excellence for team goals

  • Establishes clear metrics to make accomplishments visible and measurable.
  • Links individual accountabilities to organizational purpose and objectives, by helping others understand why they are being asked to do what they are doing.
  • Communicates specific and adequate directions regarding standards of performance; makes needs and requirements clear.

Level EX minus 2 - Focuses on disciplined execution

  • Develops and implements detailed work plans for the group or project team - including tasks, priorities, accountabilities resources and schedules and milestones.
  • Manages people and financial resources in a manner that is ethical and transparent, and that brings maximum benefit to the team.
  • Prepares to implement actions by ensuring that mandate is clear and manageable with present resources.

Holding people accountable

Holds self, team, and organization accountable to standards of performance. Manages poor performers appropriately, with the long-term "good" of the individual and organization in mind. Demonstrates a strong outcome-oriented mindset for performance improvements, and a strong bias for taking action even during ambiguous and/or high risk situations to address current or future problems or opportunities.

Illustrative behavioural indicators:

Level EX 4 and above - Fosters organizational performance and enforces broad standards

  • Enforces Agency standards to maximize performance.
  • Encourages adherence and appropriately enforces agreed upon standards of high performance and supporting behaviours across the Agency
  • Challenges current organizational goals on the basis of how they contribute to or detract from CFIA's ability to fulfill its mandate and recommends new goals.
  • Evaluates the pros and cons of a business situation critical to CFIA's mandate, and uses this analysis to cut losses based on a balanced view of costs and benefits.

Level EX 3 - Manages employee performance and enforces standards and consequences

  • Enforces consequences and takes action.
  • Confronts others openly and directly about performance problems.
  • Reviews performance against clear standards or expectations.
  • Issues clear warnings about the consequences of non-compliance with standards of performance.
  • Addresses performance problems in a timely way by addressing others openly and directly about performance problems and holding them accountable for taking action for improvement.

Level EX 2 - Creates clear linkages between accountabilities and organizational goals

  • Insists on compliance with standards; mentions possible consequences for non-performance.
  • Links individual accountabilities to organizational purpose, and objectives, by helping others understand why they are being asked to do what they are doing.
  • Insists on high performance for self and others.
  • Demands high performance, quality or resources.
  • Imposes new, different, or higher standards of performance with little input from others.
  • Uses new/more precise ways of meeting goals by demonstrating clear understanding of the performance expectation of the role and of the process.
  • Acts to set and to achieve goals that are specific and measurable and that support CFIA's success.

Level EX 1 - Monitors diligently individual and team performance

  • Holds peers and colleagues to high standards of performance and collaboration.
  • Diligently monitors performance against clear standards.
  • Explicitly delegates details of routine tasks in order to free self for more valuable or longer-range considerations.
  • Sets and monitors performance objectives; establishes clear metrics to make accomplishments visible and measurable.
  • Ensures disciplined execution of team projects and plans.
  • Implements changes to work processes to improve failing performance.
  • Works to reduce barriers within CFIA to better implement operational plans.

Level EX minus 1 - Holds others accountable

  • Promptly addresses performance deficiencies: has difficult conversations with ineffective/unproductive employees to correct the issue.
  • Encourages self and coaches others to do something better, faster, at lower cost or more efficiently to improve quality, customer satisfaction, morale, revenues, etc.
  • Establishes clear boundaries and accountabilities.
  • Plans and organizes own (and/or other's) time to improve delivery and performance.

Level EX minus 2 - Holds self-accountable

  • Drives personal efficiency; depicts a "can-do" attitude even in the face of adversity.
  • Holds self-accountable for own performance.
  • Takes ownership of decisions and actions.
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