How to help a new professional increase their chances of scoring a permanent government position

Have you ever had a stellar employee on your team, but were unable to turn their contract into a permanent position because someone returned from their secondment, or because their position opened up to competition? Perhaps you have been in a similar situation at some point in your career, and you might be able to...

Five ways governments can keep their staff — without a pay rise

The UK Department for Education (DfE) doesn’t have an easy mandate: it’s responsible for children’s services, education and child protection at a time when resources are stretched thin. But the department has another problem to grapple with — it can’t seem to retain staff. “Churn is a really big challenge,” said Rebecca Johnson, People Leader...

The Architecture of Failure

We all ask why governments fail, often spectacularly, to carry out their policy goals through bad implementation. When something goes wrong, we watch the arch of public attention rise, demands for accountability, and then governments move in to fix the problem. Then, we move on. We seldom go back and do a post-mortem on failure....

Public sector innovation buzzwords: translating jargon into plain English

Innovation labs and units have become so fashionable in the public sector that the question “Have we reached peak lab?” has become a cliché. From MindLab’s ideation pod to Louisville’s digital badges , the culture of innovation is spreading. But despite their popularity, innovators have to admit one failing: they are simply not good at defining what it is...

Game Changers: Lisa Witter and Robyn Scott, Co-Founders of Apolitical

We would like to introduce a new section on Canadian Government Executive – Game Changers. In this section, we will profile executives who are contributing to making a difference to the public sector community both in Canada and overseas, as a game changer. In this inaugural Game Changers piece, we are excited to announce Game...

An Apolitical perspective

In this episode, J. Richard Jones, publisher of Canadian Government Executive announces a new partnership that will provide readers and listeners with vital news and information from around the world. He interviews co-founder of Apolitical, Robyn Scott, about her organization and its mandate. Hear Robyn’s perspective from around the world as well as her views...

Jan/Feb 2018 issue: Public Service Leadership

The January/February 2018 issue of Canadian Government Executive is on the theme of Government built for continuity. In this issue, we are honoured to carry interviews with two top civil servants who are leading the digital transformation for the Government of Canada. Hear from Michael Wernick, Clerk of the Privy Council and Secretary of the...

5 Things you’re doing wrong in a job interview (from a communications pro)

You could hear the oxygen leave the room after I asked the question. The man across the table went white, looked down and fumbled through his papers. A few other people in the room shuffled in their seats uncomfortably. I felt bad, but I was there to do a job; and, unfortunately, he drove into...

The elephant in the public service

‘Elephant in the room’ is a metaphorical idiom for an obvious problem or risk that no one wants to discuss or a condition of groupthink that no one wants to challenge. The self-imposed silence afflicts bureaucracies in all sectors. Power and politics exacerbate the debilitating effects in the public sector. Who wants to tell the...

Taking care of ourselves so we can better take care of others

Today is Bell Let’s Talk Day – an annual initiative that began in 2010, where millions of Canadians engage in an open discussion about mental illness, offering new ideas and hope for those who struggle – mental illness touches us all in one way or another. Our mental health is affected by countless factors from...