NextGen Plus Recap – Be Honest With Yourself to Advance Your Career

Last week, GovLoop, in partnership with Young Government Leaders hosted a half-day training session for government employees. The event, NextGen+ was a partner program for GovLoop’s annual conference, NextGen. Last year NextGen had over 600 attendees of emerging government leaders, all looking for resources and information to train improve as leaders in the public sector. NextGen+ looked to replicate the theme of NextGen in a more intimate setting. Speakers, presentations and slides can be found below:

Be sure to click on the blog recaps from some of my colleagues (links above). Below I’ve provided a quick recap of a few of the sessions. I took away a lot from the speakers, so I hope you’ll explore the resources and take some time to implement the best practices in your career.

Michael Lawyer spoke about how he has made inroads at HUD to transform agency wide culture and institute a new way of thinking across the agency. Michael provided three best practices for change agents in government:

  1. Investigate and Learn the organizational culture – scope of change
  2. Congregate – get people excited – build community – big important people , need to find the people who are energized and exciting
  3. Instigate – what are the pain points? What is the change you want to see? What can those of us in that room do better? 10% change. Increments.

Kerry gave a fantastic presentation – I’d highly encourage you all to take a look at the slides and take some time to implement some of the lessons in her presentation. From Kerry’s presentation, I had two key take-aways. The first is the importance of balance and hobbies in your career. Hobbies balance life, and there are great lessons learned from hobbies. More than anything, hobbies allow you to focus your attention in new avenues.

Another element that really stuck with me from Kerry’s talk is that we are living in an era for the “insatiably curious,” as Kerry identified. There is an unbelievable about of knowledge that can be transferred and shared. And yes, sometimes this information is incredibly overwhelming.

Kerry provided some further advice for attendees, she recommended to always ask questions, “to be part of the solution you have to be part of the system and learn how to work through it.” She

Be sure to check out Kerry’s slides, but one last point I’d like to share from her presentation is the idea of “Conscious leadership.” Take a look at the graphic on the right, as it identifies that leadership consists of emotional intelligence, values intelligence and systems intelligent. Essentially, a leader needs to have an emotional maturity on their approach to work, a core set of values that guide them, and understanding how to operate with a system and navigate the organization.

The last presentation I’ll review in this post is Frank DiGiammarino. Frank started off by asking the questions some of their challenges and career management questions. Frank shared his experiences that people want to be in a position that is challenging, new and engaging. Frank explained that people are most happy when they are working on a challenge, not cruising through and not bored at work.

The challenge that Frank gave to attendees is how in our careers we can stay in a spot where we are constantly challenge, putting ourselves into situations that we are not quite comfortable in.

Further, Frank was sure to remind the audience to be brutally honest with ourselves, and know our strengths. He also identified that it is super important to find mentors and to be comfortable to talk about what we want to do and what our passions are.

The event provided dozens of great tips and tricks for emerging leaders, and as ways to improve their leadership skills and roles on their team. I’d encourage you to check out some of the related resources and take a few minutes to be honest with yourself and map out what you desire in your career.

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Elizabeth Fischer Laurie

Thanks for sharing this Pat! I was sad I wasn’t able to make it. The slides from the Under 5 presentation are fantastic – I hope I can use that concept for my next important presentation.

David B. Grinberg

This is AWESOME info for those of us who unfortunately missed it, Pat. Really great resources here from the exemplary GovLoop team — super work with this event!