Sunday, February 15, 2015

Public Service and the Good Servant Leader

The Good Servant

I stand here before you not as a prophet, but as a humble servant of you, the people.
- Nelson Mandela

Government Managers: Transforming Tyranny into Leadership

To: All Staff
Re: The Latest and Most Urgent Executive Order
Status: Implement Immediate Steps to Complete Mission Impossible by COB Today


Look familiar?


In traditional government practice, edicts roll out fairly regularly, with no clearly stated directives on how to implement these seemingly disconnected demands.  So, to the staff, it looks like there is a new task which means more stress, with no way to prioritize the new "Prime Directive" relative to the myriad of previous and urgent "Prime Directives”.

Practices: An Effective Manager

Employees (including managers) need to feel like they are listened to and respected as humans first.  


Repeat, emphasize and explain the common vision and common goals.
Identify creative and efficient means of getting tasks done.

Creating Sanctuary: Activate Listening Skills

It is vital to create safe environments where employees and managers can express their ideas and concerns in healthy ways.  

Employee Empowerment

If you think your staff members are smart enough to hire, then why not respectfully discuss their innovative ideas and find ways to implement new strategies?

The Traumatizing Tyrant

Assuring that every employee is taking time to tend to self care needs reduces absenteeism and can increase productivity.

The Magnitude of Gratitude 

Even small gestures to let employees at every level (including secretaries, maintenance staff and security) know they are appreciated for their unique set of talents and in the ways these individuals take initiatives in their often narrowly defined roles can greatly increase staff morale.

Laughter Releases Stress: It’s no joke

 And finally, find ways to laugh together more.

Prepared by Seble-Mariam Abate Menkir,
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