January 15, 2014 at 2:11 pm #181387
The annual “Public Service Recognition Week” will be held during the week of May 4-10, 2014. In years past, Federal agencies sponsored displays on the National Mall. I assume that the Partnership for Public Service will host a webcast during this week featuring Federal Secretaries.
Below are some ideas of what your agency can do to recognize public service from the Federal Agency Guide.
What do you recommend that Federal, State, and Local Government Agencies do to commemorate public service?
12 No-Cost and Low-Cost Ways to Recognize Public Servants
(Suggested by USDA)
1. Give Certificates of Appreciation for serving our nation.
2. Post a “Thank You” on your agency website.
3. Hold a special Staff Meeting acknowledging public service as a whole and your team’s contributions.
4. Hold scheduled “Open Office Hours” and invite employees to stop by and be personally acknowledged.
5. Send an email “thank you” note or “thank you” card to your staff acknowledging accomplishments
of your division, agency or office.
6. Schedule a mid-day “coffee break” in your office.
7. Visit your employees’ offices/cubicles (or send a personal email) to thank them for their work and
8. Post a “thank you” note on an employees’ door/cubicle/computer.
9. Establish a place to display memos, posters, and photos recognizing progress towards goals and
thanking employees for their help.
10. Display a large poster in all offices, for everyone to see, recognizing the work that is done for the
11. Make a list of all the ways in which your office helps the American people and post this on the
12. Post pictures of the nation where your employees have had an influence.
January 15, 2014 at 5:14 pm #181401
Dale M. PosthumusParticipant
My problem with USDA’s suggestions (I am a former employee of USDA) is that they are mostly govt employees/public servants patting each other on the back. Most would be good, on-going activities for govt managers and staff. However, I believe the intent of Public Service Recognition Week is for all of the citizenry to recognize/be educated on the value our public servants provide to us individually and to us collectively. Although exhibits on the mall work in that direction, their reach is quite limited. Perhaps Federal, state, and local govt agencies, organizations representing public employees (unions, associations, etc.), and even public sector employees in ad hoc gatherings could support local and national advertising, major events, especially in support of charities (for example, a day in which public servants volunteer to a specific charity or one of their choice). Push to get the media coverage. To the extent some of this could be done more often than once a year, it would be helpful.
Just some basic thoughts.
January 15, 2014 at 5:18 pm #181399
Great suggestion Dale! In my agency, we try to volunteer regularly within our communities to provide that outreach. For example, Monday (MLK Day of Service) is a national day of service. Next Friday evening, we will be preparing meals at DC Central Kitchen, and next Saturday we will be cleaning up the wreaths at Arlington National Cemetery. Wherever we go, citizens are impressed that we take the time to serve others, which is really why we choose to work in the public sector.
January 16, 2014 at 1:58 am #181397
David B. GrinbergParticipant
Awesome suggestions, Terry — great ways to be proactive!
I particularly like 5,6 & 7.
Since most feds don’t get much public respect or recognition — especially these days — it’s important for agency leaders, managers and front-line supervisors to fully participate in Public Service Recognition Week.
Hopefully, this will boost morale and foster a more positive work environment gov-wide.
January 16, 2014 at 12:51 pm #181395
January 16, 2014 at 2:57 pm #181393
Dale M. PosthumusParticipant
Many agencies have “employees of the month” and similar. These would be good “faces” to put prominently on web sights and in social media; also both in-depth and quick profiles, like what WaPo Fed Page does. An opportunity for the public even to nominate employees with whom they have had a good experience could be another approach. Put all of this in a page on the web site with a prominent link on the home page.
January 16, 2014 at 7:55 pm #181391
Sounds like a great initiative for our friends over at the Partnership for Public Service who sponsor Public Service Recognition Week and the great Service to America Medals, which are designed to recognize exceptional public servants. Even a simple Facebook page, where public officials can be thanked, would be great.
January 17, 2014 at 12:13 pm #181389
By the way, the new OPM Director – Katerine Archuleta – seems very attuned to appreciating Federal workers. Her blog includes a story about her visit to Ft. Meade. I like how she highlighted the achievements of specific employees. I bet that they really felt special!
She also wrote about serving on MLK Day, and throughout the year. Both are important ways to show that we care. We need more leaders like Director Archuleta!
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