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Public Sector Informant : PSI - September
Mastery in Deep Facilitation Canberra 1-2 Nov | Melbourne 4-5 Nov Understanding group dynamics Social defences in groups Establishing your authority as facilitator/leader Boundary management and holding the frame Reading the group, reading self: understanding transference and counter-transference Structure that builds trust and accelerates feedback Managing the interplay of process and content Assessing the limits of your permission to act www.rushall.com.au/deep [SEPTEMBER 2010] 24 THE PUBLIC SECTOR INFORMANT first Tuesday of the month STAY INFORMED . . . [PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION:BARRY O'FARRELL] I will help this state's public Rebuilding a bureaucracy The NSW Opposition outlines how it will reform a troubled public service Forward thinking: Hundreds of thousands of Sydneysiders cross the Sydney Harbour Bridge during its official opening in 1932. NSW's most iconic land- mark, the Sydney Har- bour Bridge, is traversed by 160,000 cars each day. In comparison, when it first opened in 1932, only 11,000 cars trundled across. Back then, the state's politicians and public servants built the bridge not only to meet the needs of their generation but all thsoe who would follow. I'm sure that, for the rest of their lives, the many men and women involved in the bridge's planning and construction felt a real pride in the part they had played in our nation's history. A drive over the bridge reminds me that those of us involved in modern politics -- particularly at a state level -- seem to have forgotten that we, too, are part of history and our primary obligation should be to the future, not the present. The decisions made today -- sound, well- thought-through decisions -- secure the future of our state and citizens as well as providing the reliable services people need today. The NSW Liberals and Nationals seek a return to a system of govern- ment driven by cause and motivated by a desire for excellence. The imperative for change Cynics may say ''we've heard all this before'', but I understand the power- ful motivation of public service, where needs are met that voluntary and free market sectors cannot or will not solve. The community's toughest problems front up to good people who have chosen public service vocations -- not just careers. People committed to making a difference. Yet in NSW, many public servants, at all levels, feel unvalued. They seek clear goals, consistent leadership and direction, ministerial attention focus- sed on problems and not just politics, fair and transparent working arrange- ments and job satisfaction. The NSW Liberals and Nationals believe it's time to start the changes needed to make NSW, including its public sector, No 1 again. Because, if elected, I know that successfully delivering our plans and mandate will depend on the professionalism and dedication of every individual in the public sector. Trust Governance for me is a delicate contract of trust, between free people and elected representatives; where the primary interest is with individu- als, families and communities, who delegate, in limited ways to govern- ment, the responsibility to conduct certain functions on their behalf. A NSW Liberals and Nationals government intends to honour this democratic contract. It's why I have sought to define a new approach to governing which will unite the public sector, individuals, communities and elected representatives in a network of trust: Between public servants and gov- ernment (through clear plans and mandates). Between people and elected rep- resentatives (through devolution and accountability). Between government and com- munities (through a strong customer service and accountability culture). It's why we're proposing greater local decision-making in health, in planning, in schooling and through our ''decade of decentralisation''. And we will seek the expertise and ideas of public servants to find more ways to make this happen. Creating a new service culture I believe the role of a public service is to deliver for and on behalf of citizens the services they need, to the standards they demand, in a manner that economically and in all other ways is sustainable and socially responsible. Over the past decade, service cultures have been re- volutionised across public, private and not-for-profit sectors in this country and overseas. Despite the fact that NSW public servants are brim- ming with ideas about how to better meet public needs, the state's politi- cal leadership has been out to lunch. The next NSW Liberals and Natio- nals administration is determined to: Deliver a new service culture. Build value and choice in our public services. Invite public sector employees to help shape innovative, relevant, responsive and modern public services for citizens. We're determined to ensure that the public service always remains at the centre of decision-making and oversight, using its unique skills and values to advocate strongly for citizens and taxpayers in our contract of trust. Choices will flow from stimulating a diverse public sector economy, where we honestly recog- nise that government doesn't have all the answers, and the imminent retire- ment of public sector baby boomers (and generations X and Y's expecta- tions of work) will also reshape delivery options. Where there's a better way of delivering a govern- ment service or program, which maintains or exceeds appropriate standards, delivers results and defends public value, we believe government is morally and economi- cally obliged to consider it. Customer service, localism, and performance management aren't new ideas. Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet secretary Terry Moran's important report, Ahead of the Game, speaks widely of ways to focus on a new era of strategic policy capability and customer expectations of public service. The NSW Liberals and Nationals are open to good ideas that deliver the service results that the public deserves.
PSI - October