How can you save money without irreparably damaging relationships with staff and service users?
Can you help disillusioned staff to reconnect with a sense of public service at a time when workloads and pressure are increasing?
Do you need advice on how to create the conditions for difficult but necessary conversations?
Are you able to integrate personal and cultural considerations into transformation programmes?
12 June 2017 ELECTED MEMBERS – WHAT’S THE ROLE OF MODERN COUNCILLORS IN BUILDING COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT?
Following council elections a month ago, new elected members across the country will be getting to grips with what it means to be a councillor in 2017. Most authorities will be running induction sessions to help those new members understand how different parts of the organisation work, what roles and responsibilities officers and members have, and what big local challenges and opportunities they need to be aware of.
With time precious and a lot to cover, a theme those early sessions often miss is the member role in engaging citizens to make good things happen in their neighbourhoods. We know from experience the hugely significant part that councillors can play in joining the dots between the ideas, energy and informal networks in a community and the skills, expertise and strategic vision of councils. Some councillors have always been at home in this role as ‘connectors’ or ‘facilitators’, but many lack the confidence or the practical tools to really embrace it – and this can mean they and their residents are missing out at a time when community engagement and co-design are recognised as so important in solving big local challenges.
With our long track record in organisational development and community engagement, this is a gap that OPM is helping councils to fill. From one-off workshops to 6 month programmes, we can support elected members – new and old – to explore what they can do to help connect people, ideas and groups in their areas. We can help them to think about the skills and tools that make councillors effective as connectors and facilitators, and the practical things they can do to join up what happens at the town hall with what’s going on in their patch. Our workshops are thought-provoking, inspiring and above all rooted in real life experiences which elected members can apply to their own work.
To find out more about how OPM can help elected members at your local authority, contact Rob Francis, Principal in Transformation and Change.
We help team leaders across public services and third sector organisations to think, relate and act in ways that go beyond traditional change management programmes.
Our approach to Leadership and Organisational Development helps organisations respond to the pressures and uncertainties that arise due to the combined effects of spending cuts, rising demand for services and increasing cost.
We support clients across the public services – including central government departments, regulators, local authorities, NHS trusts, CCGs, and health and social care providers – by:
- Bringing together different stakeholder perspectives to build a shared understanding of your wider system, your organisational strengths, and the underlying issues and dilemmas you face.
- Creating a shared narrative and vision for change that supports your core purpose and collective endeavour.
- Implementing the appropriate mix of change interventions at different levels of your organisation and system, paying particular attention to political, cultural, systemic and psychological dimensions.
- Facilitating shifts in mindsets and behavioural patterns that ‘unstick’ thinking and behaviours and generate new ways of working.
- Thinking creatively about organisational design, models, structures, systems and behaviours to ensure change is sustained and connections are made between the ways you work internally and how your organisation works externally.
- Establishing spaces for thinking, reflecting and learning together which develop your ongoing OD capability to handle change in the future.
- Evaluating the impact and outcomes of any change process.