Competencies for Jail Leaders

What knowledge, skills, and abilities must jail leaders have in order to be successful? The 22 core competencies of successful jail leaders identified in a 2011 study by the Center for Innovative Public Policies, Inc. are listed below. You can click on links to the Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSA) charts and the articles that have appeared in American Jails magazine for each competency.

1. Anticipate, analyze and resolve organizational challenges and conflicts.
KSA chart
American Jails article

2. Assure organizational accountability.
KSA chart
American Jails article

3. Build and maintain positive relationships with external stakeholders.
KSA chart
American Jails article

4. Build and maintain teamwork; mentor and coach others.
KSA chart
American Jails article

5. Communicate effectively, internally and externally. 
KSA chart

6. Comprehend, obtain and manage fiscal resources.
KSA chart
American Jails article

7. Develop and maintain a positive organizational culture that promotes respect for diverse staff.
KSA chart
American Jails article

8. Develop and sustain organizational vision/mission.
KSA chart
American Jails article

9. Engage in strategic planning.
KSA chart
American Jails article

10. Enhance self-awareness; maintain proactive professional commitment.
KSA chart
American Jails article

11. Establish organizational authority, roles, and responsibilities.
KSA chart

12. Leverage the role of the jail in the criminal justice system.
KSA chart
American Jails article

13. Make sound decisions.
KSA chart
American Jails article

14. Manage change.
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American Jails article

15. Manage labor relations.
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American Jails article

16. Manage power and influence.
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American Jails article

17. Manage time.
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American Jails article

18. Obtain and manage human resources.
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American Jails article

19. Oversee inmate and facility management.
KSA chart
American Jails article

20. Oversee physical plant management.
KSA chart
American Jails article

21. Reduce jail-related liability risks.
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22. Understand and manage emerging technology.
KSA chart
American Jails article