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What Is ELGL's Jam This Month? High-Performance Government

Whether it's the Diversity Dashboard or supper clubs, #CityHallSelfie Day or Leslie Knope GIFs: Engaging Local Government Leaders (ELGL) members are passionate about all things public service. Currently, the Jam of the Month they're obsessing over is building high-performance government (HPG). Can you blame them?

High-performance government is all about being better today than you were yesterday. It's about building effective and innovative teams that develop efficient processes and produce measurable, actionable results. They are clear, accountable, and engaged with their community, and they foster a culture of inspiration and innovation with their peers.

Sound like maybe their jam is your jam too? Interested in hearing more about your peers' high-performance journeys? Check out the ELGL HPG Jam of the Month webinar, blog posts, and podcast below!

ELGL Webinar: Three Norsemen of the Datapocalpyse

Steve Fritz, Tom Milas, and Mike Skibbe; Village of Buffalo Grove, IL

Learn how the award-winning Village of Buffalo Grove, IL team uses its work and asset management data to improve everything from snow and ice control to daily vehicle checks. They share how data is used to drive decision making across the village and the importance of driving change at your own organization—even when viewed as apocalyptic. Watch the webinar recording now »

Improving Processes? Don't Forget to Ask This Question

Daniel Johns, GIS Manager, Clay County Utility Authority, FL

Is building more efficient processes challenging for your organization? If so, you’re not alone. Changing behavior to drive efficiency is one of the most challenging things a team faces. But it doesn’t have to be that way. It’s just a matter of asking the right question.

When setting out to streamline a process, I’ve found that people typically start with these two questions: “How do we begin?” and “Where do we begin?” Unfortunately, these tend to be the most overwhelming and difficult questions to answer. In my experience at the Clay County Utility Authority, I’ve found there’s one question that leads us to identify processes that can easily be improved upon. It’s a simple question, but one that often goes unasked. Suspense killing you? Read more from Daniel »

Public Participation: High-Performance Government's Early Warning System

Jay Anderson, City Engagement Specialist, City of Colorado Springs, CO

What if you could improve the chances of your work succeeding? What if you could turn forward time and know the objections your projects might face? Would you want an early-warning system to know where community issues were going to arise and potentially derail your plans—or worse, erode precious trust in your government?

Of course, you’d want to know about issues before they become problems, and you’d want to know about problems before they become catastrophes. But, how can you know what concerns will be raised by the various members of your community? Who could know what objections residents might come up with? How on Earth could you, a local government project manager or department head, weather the storms of community feedback, social media campaigns, and rumors that often surround public projects? Jay has the answers. Keep reading »

GovLove Episode 278: High-Performance Government With Nick Kittle

Kirsten Wyatt, Co-founder, ELGL
Nick Kittle, Gov't Performance and Innovation Coach, Cartegraph

Nick Kittle, Government Innovation & Performance Coach and author, shares his lessons on leadership, innovation and improving local government. He talks about his experience as a chief innovation officer, his book Sustainovation and the work he’s doing now for Cartegraph. From building momentum to not being afraid to get fired, Nick has great advice for those wanting to make a difference. Listen to the episode now to hear it all »

Don't Stop Improving: Nine Lessons Learned in Plano, Texas

Abby Owens, Public Works Compliance Specialist, City of Plano, TX

I joined the City of Plano Public Works Department in late 2017 with a priority project: implement new software that combined asset management and work orders. Oh, and train 200 users, deploy 100 iPads, and do it all as quickly as possible because we promised a launch date of a year ago. No big deal, right?

Fortunately, with recent retirements, promotions, and overall frustration with old processes, our department was ready for some change. We all saw so much potential in improving how we communicated about and tracked what happened in public works. There were hurdles to overcome—including the fear of “big brother” watching every move our crews made—a reluctance to give up paper, and distrust amongst groups and divisions.

How did we get started? Every good project requires goal setting. Along every step of the way, we had three main goals in mind. Right this way to read more from Abby »

5 Tips for Building Your Own Effective and Innovative Teams

Cori Burbach, Assistant City Manager, City of Dubuque, IA

Lead the city in becoming a more high-performing organization. That was one of my assigned duties after being appointed assistant city manager of the City of Dubuque. But, what did that mean exactly? Up until that point in my government career, high performing meant things like financial accountability. Standard operating procedures. Performance measurement systems. Quality customer service. All things that could help build productive operations. What I’ve learned is that you can’t have any of the above if you don’t first have effective and innovative teams. In just two short years, I’ve learned so much about this first tenet of high-performance government (HPG). I’ve learned that if you’re not focusing on it—if you don’t have measurable ways of defining that phrase—you might as well not even start thinking about any of the other tenets: efficient processes, measurable results, clear and accountable government, or proactive engagement of citizens.

Here are my 5 tips for beginning to build your own effective and innovative teams. Keep trekking on your high-performance journey: read the rest of Cori's blog post »

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