This week is Certified Public Manager (CPM) week – Level Three of Eight. The focus is productivity and quality. Some folks might not expect government employees to be concerned about these subjects – those folks would be wrong.
As usual, working with government sector employees reconnects me with my “roots” and helps me to reacquaint myself with the passionate, caring people who work in public service jobs. Hats off to our government employees!
We start Level 3 with a macro discussion of the U.S. economy and what has happened to Gross National Product in the past thirty years. We talk about industry sectors – primarily the government sector. That discussion quickly evolves into a discussion of the micro – the organization in which they work, their work units, and the productivity of the individuals who work for them. We examine the way we communicate as managers and learn why and how to communicate expectations, and how a lack of adequate communication often results in false assumptions. Like the economy, we discuss communication at the macro – and micro – level.
If that’s not enough, we learn about emotional intelligence. In this week’s session, we had a very interesting discussion about using emotional intelligence competencies in all aspects of improving the organization – even ways to consider emotional intelligence in the hiring process. In an environment where so many people now have equal access to information and knowledge, improving personal skills in emotional intelligence is becoming a way to differentiate.
Project Management is now an important managerial skill. We are finding new ways to use project teams to complete complex tasks. In Level 3, we learn about project management and do a simulation which includes a Work Breakdown Structure, a Project Overview, a Critical Path analysis, and a Gantt chart. Participants were able to use their experience in participating in projects in discussing ways to improve future outcomes.
Achieving CPM certification is not easy – and not required. The forty-eight folks that just finished Level 3 are actively volunteering to improve their personal performance – which directly impacts the success of their work unit – which impacts the success of their organization – which impacts the success of the government sector – which makes America a better place to be.
Macro or micro? Indeed, the improvement of one individual can help us all!