Over the last few weeks, our team has consulted with different organizations of various sizes and spoken at one conference of government leaders.
The National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials (NAHRO) held its summer conference in San Francisco. The City by the Bay is a world-class destination that’s always a treat for those attending a conference. Patrick presented R.A.P.I.D. Innovation to packed house of housing officials passionate about improving the lives of their residents and building stronger communities.
In the Village of Wellington, Florida, Paul Schofield, City Manager and members of his staff invited Patrick to provide succession planning and talent management consulting services. Wellington is a high performing organization composed of people passionate about public service and who actively seek to get better all the time. Patrick will be returning for additional follow-up services related to talent management and assembling Wellington’s 21st century workforce.
The City and County of Denver, Colorado retained Patrick to facilitate a newly formed Task Force composed of senior staff members from a number of departments responsible for crafting a revised Water Quality Policy. Recently, Denver adopted “Greenprint Denver” and Water Quality is one of several key components. Patrick will be shepherding the Task Force over the next few months as they pursue a bold initiative focused on improving water quality in Denver.
Lourdes Castro-Ramirez, President and CEO of the San Antonio (TX) Housing Authority retained Patrick to provide expertise and experience in facilitating a forward-thinking planning process for members of her leadership team. Lourdes and her team are passionate about building better lives for residents of their communities and feature a number of success stories of people who formerly lived in public housing now making an incredible impact on society.
Where’s the crossover?
Whether your government is working on an area as significant as these agencies are, or searching for a method to optimize employee performance and communication it all starts the same way. The key to success is to determine where you are and where you want to be. Set your goals. Make your plan. And strategically execute!
Need assistance with putting a plan together? We’d be pleased to help! Call us at (925) 518-0187 or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll help you continue the journey to “get better all the time.”
People often confuse branding with the idea of simply adopting a new logo and plastering it on every piece of collateral material an agency produces – business cards, website, fleet, and so on. Be careful not to confuse brand awareness with brand strength. A brand is the emotional and psychological relationship you have with your customers. Strong brands elicit opinions, emotions, and sometimes physiological responses from customers. Simply looking at an organization’s logo elicits an emotional response. When people view the Mejorando Group logo I want the connection to be one of a valuable partner in the pursuit of getting better all the time; a forward thinking resource. When you see other logos like Google, Southwest Airlines, Pepsi or Nike what immediately comes to mind? Most likely characteristics such as quality, convenience, reliability, and innovation pop in your head.
Governments with strong brands are more successful in executing their mission and the opposite holds true as well; those with weak brands struggle in satisfying their purpose. At its core the brand of government at all levels is to be viewed as the protagonist in the building of a better society. It doesn’t matter what function the government agency has, its role is to be an enabler of an improved quality of life for its customers. So, take a quick look at your agency’s logo and be candid in your assessment of what comes to mind when you see it. Is your agency accomplishing its intent? If you were to ask your customers what the reputation of your agency is, what might be their responses?
Here are three steps you can take to immediately strengthen your organization’s brand:
- Be crystal clear about what business you’re in. “Thanks for calling, we build strong communities.” How’s that for a powerful message to everyone who calls your agency’s offices? Try to state in ten words or less what benefits customer receive for using your programs or services. As Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., famously said “I would not give a fig for the simplicity this side of complexity, but I would give my life for the simplicity on the other side of complexity.” Concise and compelling messages are essential to brand equity
- Act As Though. Be vigilant in communicating through words and actions the brand as you want it portrayed. Emphasize it to members of your workforce and share it with your customers, elected officials and the media. A healthy level of public pressure can prove effective in keeping people focused on the brand.
- It’s a Journey. You’re never finished with living your brand. When the brand suffers a setback and it will at some point, learn from the experience and move forward. Your brand isn’t about perfection, which isn’t attainable anyway, but it’s about strength and influence. Remember, there is a direct correlation about the credibility of your brand and the amount of influence it has as a tool to build a strong community.
For tips on creating a distinctive employer brand for your agency, read the article “Your Employer Brand: A Talent Magnet” provided under Good Reads in the August issue of Moving Forward.
The Olympics are winding down and there have been absolutely incredible displays of accomplishment – the blending of mind and body – providing unprecedented feats. It can make you wonder if we’ve even come close to reaching our potential as human beings. So, I began pondering about this notion of a Dream Team, a term most commonly attached to the 1992 USA Olympic men’s basketball team, and how it’s now bandied about in casual conversations all over – work, home and at play.
What type of skills and character traits would you consider if you had the opportunity to convene your work Dream Team? Long in tenure, sound body of knowledge, unlimited talent, well-developed imaginations, change acumen, fluent in organizational politics, polished sense of humor…what? Is it about assembling super-performers at all levels or as an alternative, relying on a healthy mix of people who possess the “right” ingredients necessary for high performance. Doesn’t matter what line of work, assembling a dream team is challenging and exciting simultaneously. I know, and so do you, many top performers who don’t have the requisite people skills needed to function on a work team. We also know a number of solid performers, good people who have “it” and bring it everyday, I mean every single day. They’re work horses, undeterred by disruption, challenged by change and eager to have a positive impact on people. When I worked inside organizations I used to love working alongside the passionate people who understood that being just a bit vulnerable was a key to forging effective working partnerships. When I hired these type of people, I would advise them to ‘bring their surf board, baby, because when you start here, we’re riding big waves” and I could see the glimmer shine in their eyes, they were ready to make a difference.
So, who’s on your dream team. Give it some thought, your spirit will appreciate it and let’s continue our journey in getting better all the time.