How Is Your Help Helping?

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This topic contains 5 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Jane Shipyard Worker 6 years, 10 months ago.

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  • #134071

    David Dejewski
    Participant

    More than 230 GovLoopers have accepted the challenge and attempted to describe what they do in 7 words or less. I drop in on that forum from time to time and have found some really cool 7-word job descriptions. Here are just a few:

    “I help develop great federal leaders.”

    “Advocate for citizen education in government processes”

    “Warrior-poet with license to litigate”

    “Make information clear and compelling.”

    I recently noticed a number of similar descriptions and they got me thinking:

    “Help organizations make more insightful decisions.”

    “Communicate complex concepts to help make decisions.”

    “Quality improvement through data analysis”

    “Enable government leaders to think/act beyond..”

    Many of us in government believe that we are in the business of helping decision makers to make better / more informed decisions. This seems like this is a pretty big deal.

    Looking elsewhere in GovLoop forums, there are lot’s of quotes that seem to indicate that decision making is a concern and that there are lot’s of people working on (or concerned about) this aspect of our culture:

    “Our challenge is to improve the quality of those daily decisions…”

    “Our challenge is to establish a framework (or information structure) that allows any user “access” to the knowledge they need in order to make a decision.”

    “Isn’t it amazing that many public organizations attempt to solve 2011 problems with 1911 thinking.”

    “So often, Senior Execs ignore the facts and make their decisions solely based on “gut”. This is risky business (and risky government too)! One decision at the top can crumble all the positive efforts in place that are lower down on the food chain. It takes a village (or a group of competent advisers) to successfully run an organization. “Gut” just doesn’t cut it in the 21st century!”

    For those of you who are in the business of helping decision makers to make more informed decisions:

    How is your Help Helping? (or not?)

    Do you have an example or two to share of well supported decisions being made in your environment?

  • #134081

    I think we put “helping make better decisions” because that’s what the public wants to hear and not because that is what we are actually doing

  • #134079

    David Dejewski
    Participant

    Wow… that is a powerful statement, Jane. Are you involved in the creation of architecture, strategic plans, transition plans, investment review, or some other decision support tool or process? Just curious what specific tools or process you’re involved with.

    How would you describe the difference between what we’re actually doing vs what “the public wants to hear?”

  • #134077

    Caryn Wesner-Early
    Participant

    I support patent examiners by doing exhaustive literature searches and finding out whether the patent applied for has been done before. This helps by reducing the number of bad patents issued, which in turn reduces the load on the courts and unnecessary expense for business. A little abstruse, maybe, but every little bit helps.

  • #134075

    David Dejewski
    Participant

    Caryn – I doubt there is anything “little” about exhaustive literature searches. It sounds like your work is an important part of due diligence. Without it, we’d have patent disputes and lawsuits that would cost a lot of money, and cripple productivity.

    I assume that your leaders believe it is important to do this due diligence, and they actually use the results of your work when rendering a final decision. Yes?

  • #134073

    @David– I work in Public Relations which some would consider an advisory role in the decision making process. I will use an example to explain what I see happening–Let’s say I write a memo and there are 10 people in the chain that need to see it, edit it and approve the content. Usually by the time this happens it’s two weeks later and not everyone really “looked” at it, they just assumed since there were so many “eyes” that all the gliches and mistakes were caught–but this is not always so. This is no different in our actions–there are often many stove-pipes in the system not to mention redundancies in processes. There needs to be more collaboration and more decisiveness and more “balls” (excuse my bluntness). Because often another problem I see is to many “yes” men and not enough people willing to put anything on the line to say–“no, this is bunk, it’s a bad idea the process is to complicated or its not going to work–here needs to be a better way” The government is making far to many decisions in to many areas–the government was established as a servant to the people–not the other way around–it is the American Public that needs to be more proactive in the decision making process

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