Start of a new Paradigm in Government Work

(Crossposted to LiveJournal)
I am extremely excited that I am in the middle of this new cosmic shift. We are moving away from the days when the entire world is interconnected by all these cool gadgets and tools, and the government does not allow employees to participate.

Now we are seeing a whole new movement where our federal jobs are going to be interconnected in so many different ways. I’ve recently been introduced to a new Social Networking site called Govloop. On it all sorts of different federal employees can get together and share even more ways with one another to move this development forward. Employees within the same organization who would never normally interact are conferring on a regular basis.

Yes, we are going to lose some of our less flexible employees behind in the dust – those who think this is a waste of time, a waste of effort. Those who cannot see that the smaller we make our world, the more we can all accomplish together.

Yes – I am exceedingly excited to be in the middle of all these changes. I am thrilled and anxious to see all these things happen right on my doorstep. I am really hoping that this set of changes will lead to another set of changes that I’ve been harping on for quite a while.

I want to see a further paradigm shift where people stop saying condescending remarks deprecating the government. Having been raised in the DC Metro area, I’ve been around politicians and government workers practically all my life. I’ve always heard people complaining about the government, the bureaucracy, the slowness; most people end up mouthing cliches like, “welcome to the government,” and “that’s the government for you.”

I find it HILARIOUS (read that with heavy sarcasm) when those same cliches come out of the mouths of federal employees. You are talking about yourselves! I am hoping that our new movement towards a highly involved communications between co-workers and between agencies will actually cause the bulk of federal employees to feel some sense of ownership about their positions and their organizations.

I am really hoping that in my lifetime I am going to see citizens respecting their government, employees respecting their employers, consumers respecting their providers. I really want to be part of a society run by mutual respect and pride – pride in ourselves, and pride in each other.

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Profile Photo FPrioleau

The ideas and apps that I have learned about through participating in this site and following @govloop on twitter has been numerous. They have also helped to improve my performance. I am glad that I discovered this site.

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Profile Photo Yun-Mei Lin

I too am learning so much just from the discussions and posts on this site. I hope to continue learning and growing through the information found on and through this site.

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Profile Photo Les Yamagata

I think, too, that it’s an excellent site, replete with many insights and great ideas. Since there is a focus on transparency, it certain meets this criterion. However, all agencies/departments are interested in the “bottom line,” and how these sites add value other than foster the interconnectedness of people in and associated with government. I found it interesting that you have heard government employees openly disparage government. I’m from the west coast and I have found the vast majority of government employees proud of their organizations. Yes, it’s difficult to mitigate the gossip and the politics, but overall, most of my co-workers have a great respect for their workers, the US government, and the value of public service.

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Profile Photo Steve Ressler

Yun – great 1st post and glad to have smart people like you in the government. I agree with you – the government or an agency is just a collection of people. We should take responsibility and try to improve from the inside.

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Profile Photo Yun-Mei Lin

Les, I agree, we need to underline how these new tools can affect the “bottom line.” I am hoping the rest of the nation catches up to the mindset that you already see – of pride in their organizations and their own parts in them.

GovLoop – thanks for the encouragement! Yes, I am hoping that a new trend begins!
Yun-Mei

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Profile Photo Tracy Kerchkof

“I want to see a further paradigm shift where people stop saying condescending remarks deprecating the government. Having been raised in the DC Metro area, I’ve been around politicians and government workers practically all my life. I’ve always heard people complaining about the government, the bureaucracy, the slowness; most people end up mouthing cliches like, “welcome to the government,” and “that’s the government for you.” ”

I agree. I am not from the DC metro area, but have worked for gov’t before I moved here and I hear this all the time. It saddens me because I really do take pride in my work, and this cliche, esp when it is believed by the people they are about completely undermines and belittles me.

I come to Govloop for hope. I think the strength of Govloop is that it seems to attract all of the people who want this to change, and serves to restore my sanity my workplace is slowly draining it.

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Profile Photo Yun-Mei Lin

Tracy, it will be difficult to counteract several decades of negative perceptions of government processes. But I firmly believe that it is going to have to start from inside. We, as government employees, are going to have to start by taking pride in what we do, and who we are. And when we hear those deprecating remarks, that are nothing but mindless cliches, we must have ready some phrases to counteract them. “Welcome to the government,” “Well, thank you – I am glad to be a part of our system. Now how may I help get the word out about how spectacular we are?” “That’s the government for you.” “Well, that’s not how it always is, and that’s not what we’re about.”

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Profile Photo Craig Sellars

Great post Yun-Mei Lin. The pride in public service must be restored in all circles. A great read if you have the time: A Strong Foundation: Report of the Task Force on Public Service Values and Ethics, John Tait (Chair)

“Professions based on high ideals – and public service is one – are bound to
experience moments of discouragement or disillusionment: people are not
perfect, choices are difficult, the way ahead is not always clear, policy
making is often messy and sometimes raw, and pressures are great. But a
strong public service community, well grounded in its values, will be able
to surmount these moments of testing, recover its balance, and renew its
calling.”

Keep working and thanks for your passion.

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Profile Photo Yun-Mei Lin

Craig, thank you. I will definitely keep my eye out for that report. I would love to see more publications supporting this direction. I’ve been very encouraged by the responses. I know that we are not alone in our pride and patriotism. I’d just like to see it become the “norm.”

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