Gaze into your crystal ball and what do you see as the future role of government? What impact will changes have on your career? What’s your Personal Brand? These are just a few of the questions being confronted today as the public sector experiences unprecedented transformation. Government is the protagonist for a better quality of life for citizens, but the issue remains, to what degree it will execute that role. Read to learn the 8 methods of a blueprint for a recession-proof future.
The convergence of the forces for change, present the public sector professional another in a series of opportunities to redefine him/herself. The question is what are the capabilities and competencies that comprise this redefinition? Here is a recommended blueprint for designing and building a recession-proof future.
1. Strengthen your Personal Brand
Brand is nothing more, nothing less than your reputation. A personal brand must highlight your special strengths, yet at the same time it also must not be too self-promotional, an all-too-common error. Be vigilant in strengthening your Personal Brand and lubricate your mind by participating in focused development and learning activities that are designed to enhance your skills and capabilities. Besides attending conferences and webinars, consider specific development tactics like a stretch assignment or engaging peers in a book club.
2. Convene a Career Board of Directors
Assemble a group of your most trusted advisors to be members of your Career Board of Directors. The people you choose should help you raise your level of self-awareness, so their candor should be appreciated. Navigating one’s career can be a series of non-linear steps but the key is that an upward trajectory is always achieved.
3. Serve as a Change Advisor
Operate from the maxim “Change is a process, not an Event,” and become fluent in understanding the finer points of designing and implementing successful change initiatives. Your fluency in change will enable you to navigate the uneven terrain associated with building, and sustaining, a high performing organization.
4. Heighten your Political Acumen
The critical skill necessary for leading today’s collaborative teams is that of influencing others or political acumen. These skills include understanding political power in an organization, being able to frame and sell ideas, influence others, negotiate, persuade, build networks, initiate and manage change and effectively manage organizational crises.
5. Become an Innovation Architect
Public sector professionals must be on the forefront as the igniters for actively pursuing innovation helping transition from best practices onto “next practices.” Innovators recognize that “doing things different and doing different things” is a prerequisite for innovating and creating a climate that can permeate the traditional risk-averse culture that limits the progressive thinking desperately needed today.
6. Work as a Leadership Farmer
Like successful farmers, successful leaders are disciplined in their approach to their role. Create an Effective Leadership Profile comprised of the specific actions and behaviors you have observed of the most successful leaders you have observed, your own insights, and information you have read or heard from speakers. Now, use this as a framework to guide your growth and development.
7. Deepen Your Subject Matter Expertise
Increase your body of knowledge about those areas becoming increasingly important to public sector organizations – financial analytics (translate the numbers into a compelling story), sustainability measures (and not just for the green movement), social marketing (everything social media related to building more engaged citizenry), and strategic planning (as a management tool, not simply a forecasting device).
8. Be a Talent Manager
Recognize the ability to attract, retain and develop top performers is mission-critical to your organization’s success. Succession Planning, Learning and Development, and Knowledge Transfer are areas of expertise you must become familiar with in your role as a Talent Manager.
The future has arrived and with it, an emerging role for you. Increased scrutiny, higher expectations and a shifting political landscape add up to a valuable opportunity for you to activate change, drive innovation and successfully lead your career towards a better future. Growth and comfort don’t co-exist. Are you ready?
Visit our website to read a number of articles Patrick has authored about a variety of topics related to innovation, leadership and talent management to gain more ideas for implementing your blueprint.