Four Organizational Leadership Levels in the Service

The USFWS Leadership Competency Development Model is based on four organizational levels of leadership within the Service.  These leadership levels or position complexity levels within the organization define the Service leadership hierarchy and how our workforce is organized from a leadership standpoint.  The organizational leadership levels used in the Model are:  1) first appointment leader, 2) mid-level leader, 3) senior leader and 4) executive leader. 

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In general, the organizational leadership levels of the Service mirror the General Schedule pay scales.  These organizational leadership levels are related to work complexity, level of supervision needed for the position, pay scale levels, experience and skills sets needed to advance to the next leadership level.  In the Service, first appointment leaders in the General Schedule pay scale are typically GS-5 through GS-10, mid-level leaders are typically GS-11 and GS-12, senior leaders are typically GS-13 and GS-14, while executive leaders are GS-15 and Senior Executive Service (SES). 

This Model can also be used for Service employees in the Wage Grade pay plan based on their level of supervision, organizational level and position complexity.  Because the wage grade pay plan is in line with pay for private industry positions in a specific wage area, the pay level of an individual is not a good indication of what their organizational leadership level might be.  For purposes of this Model, Wage grade employees should make subjective judgments regarding what organizational leadership level most appropriately describes them.