NCR Networking Meeting – 2008-10-01

Location: NCR – Colonel By Room, Ottawa City Hall

Registrants: 30

Presentation:  Attached.

Subject:  “The Quest for Excellence in the Public Service: Where to Begin.

Speaker:  Dr. Paul Crookall, Editor-in-Chief, Canadian Government Executive Magazine.

Introduction to our Panel Discussion:

If the Public Service is to advise Ministers and deliver programs and services to the highest standards of excellence, it must be creative in its thinking, efficient in its work processes, effective in risk management, and fully accountable for its performance. These are the characteristics of a “high performance” Public Service.

One of the most important elements of any successful organization is the development of a culture of teamwork among all of the key players. Amidst all of the competing demands for space at the Government’s table, we must never lose sight of the fact that we are all on the same team. Beyond a culture of teamwork is how well we do our work, and what benchmarks we set for ourselves. Here attitudes matter. The basic questions are simply: are we aiming daily for excellence in public policy and public service? And, are today as excellent as we can be? Kevin Lynch, Clerk of the Privy Council
believes we should make excellence our quest.

The CPSQA wants to help deepen and entrench excellence in the culture of the public service and the everyday work of public servants. Together, we can make excellence the benchmark by which we judge ourselves and the work we do. By setting a standard of excellence, by managing to this standard, by recognizing employees who do exceptional work, we will not only improve the pride of our employees in what they do, but also improve public esteem for public service and public servants.

Our panel is going to share their experience to help us as we begin or continue our quest.

Following Dr. Crookall’s presentation, there was an active discussion moderated by CPSQA Director Vic Pakalnis. Those around the table expressed considerable interest in the topic owing to the very rapid changes in the public service work environments owing to acceleration of retirements and the shortage of qualified successors.