Training Dynamics And Consultants Limited

"Giving you the competitive edge through people"


By: Dr. Ainsley Deer, MSc,CEO/Senior Consultant, Training Dynamics & Consultants Ltd.

The Jamaican business leaders have spent the past 5 years re-engineering for greater effectiveness. How successful we have been remains to be seen as the evidence of the effects of re-engineering are still somewhat elusive.

Since the business sector is re-engineering for greater effectiveness should this also apply for government? Should government be re-engineered to become less bureaucratic, less centralised and more vibrant?

In the information age where change is a constant and competition is rife, how can government keep up if it becomes too preoccupied with rules and regulations and hierarchical structures. While I do not agree entirely with the approach taken by big businesses, I do recognise the need for government to follow their example and re-engineer for greater effectiveness.

There appears to be confusion in the minds of some people in that they believe that re-organisation is synonymous with re-engineering. Re-organisation for most public sector bodies means re-organisation of the organisational chart.

The type of bureaucratic public sector system that has evolved over the past three (3) decades rewards employees not on the basis of how well they do their jobs, but on how long they have served the department. This in turn accounts for the many employees being Peter principled when they are promoted. Indeed some managers in government are rewarded not necessarily because they have superior performance records but because they manage larger bureaucracies.

We need to re-engineer the incentives that drive not only public sector managers but also their employees as well as elected officers. The public sector must become more competitive; it must strive to decentralise its authority, force employees to make more decisions, measure it’s results and identify methods to measure success and failure.

This should be an ongoing process. In short government must become more entrepreneurial. Government agencies must have clearly defined missions, and goals and develop budgets and incentives for rewarding good performers.

Government agencies are often expected to address broad missions with very limited budgets. When the projects are successful with limited budgetary allocations, what kind of incentives are in place for these agencies? What difference does it make for management and staff when they save money and not waste it? If there is no difference then why bother to deliver results? When goals are exceeded, do this year’s results become next year’s targets? Are the goals eliminated when they become obsolete? A programme that was a success story ten years ago may not be relevant today. When these programmes are retained they expand the bureaucracy and make the work of government more difficult and costly.

Government must be careful not to increase its regulatory burden by expanding its bureaucracies. In today’s reality government should strive to decrease its role as service provider and instead, act as a catalyst. If government strives to change market conditions by giving greater tax incentives, encouraging employment for the poor, severely punishing those who pollute the environment and chiding the business community when it steps out of line it will be more effective.

Govt must strive to become more knowledge based in this age of information. Data must be collected, analysed and disseminated under one statistical body.

Finally, Government should strive to be more a government of prevention and not wait until crime and violence, drugs and homelessness reach crisis proportions before they act. Not only is this less costly, but it gives those who live only to criticise government (sometimes unjustifiably) less grounds for doing so.

Reform of any kind must strive to meet the needs of the people and not the bureaucracies. To facilitate this government must operate in a less hierarchical manner. Hierarchies are simply not flexible enough to respond adequately to rapidly changing conditions.


TD&C News and Updates

Latest News

TD&C Updates

TD&C's Products and Services

Training and Development
HR Consulting
Confidential Psychological Services

Always operating with Integrity!