Because it isn’t a business, it serves a different purpose and the goals just aren’t the same. Government can learn a lot from good companies and C-suite managers, but government isn’t a capitalistic enterprise and it shouldn’t be. Sometimes corporate arrogance oversteps wisdom when executives make the jump to the public side of life. It… read more →
Your mission and the work that you do is complex and full of detail. It may not be that complex to you because you’re the expert, but for most of us it’s a struggle to figure out. If you expect people to trust you, they need to understand you and that’s where the challenge comes.… read more →
If you answered ‘an old white guy’ you win … congratulations! The following data shows that the preponderance of public participants tend to be white, older, male and there to protect their status quo. Big surprise? Probably not. Is that most effective and useful? Probably not. Determining who really needs to be engaged is one of… read more →
We in the public involvement biz like to pat ourselves on the back about what a good job we do, but it’s healthy to take an objectively critical step back and look at the broader state of the field, and the state of the field described in the following article isn’t good. The first order of… read more →
Most institutions start their encounters and meetings with the public intending to transfer the data and information that exists in their heads, across the room or table and into other people’s heads. Typically, they lay out their best argument (which worked well for them in graduate school) and, if there’s any possible disagreement to it,… read more →
I just spent a couple of days with a group of very smart Midwest State agency people coaching their engineers to speak less like engineers when they’re speaking to people who aren’t engineers. A couple of my partners recently helped a Federal agency with a major public meeting that I was able to poke my… read more →
In the craft of successfully engaging people in solving problem or resolving issues, asking for help from those people helps you considerably. Doing this is hard on the egos of CEOs and managers in public service, but it’s great for your projects. Just ask them.
What is Normal? A constantly changing normal is the new normal. When you think about it, you realize that time changes all of us and makes the previously odd or out of place common and more acceptable. Consider fashion, music, or attitudes about right, wrong, fairness or honesty. Change happens, and people and their values… read more →
Public involvement is a practice that’s pretty simple in concept and complex in successful execution – after all, we’re dealing with people. So, when I ran across the following that does a nice job of explaining it, I had to pass it on to you.
The two biggest public challenges that clients and students tell us they face is that (1) they don’t know how to get people involved, except for (2) the ones that do, come to meetings and hearings mad. They’re right, and here’s the empirical evidence.