To: Our Managers

From: The Federal Youth Network

Subject: Rocking our world


We would like to share with you our ideas on how to make the public service a better place to work, allowing us to unleash our talents, enthusiasm and energy and become change agents for the good of the public service and Canada as a whole. You, our manager, have the power to make it a great experience, making us want to spend our whole careers in the public service. Here are a few ideas that would rock our world:

Engage us. We seek responsibility and are mindful of the associated accountability. We have chosen the public service because we believe in making a tangible difference in the lives of Canadians. We recognize how busy you are and we want to be part of the solution. Engage us by taking us along to meetings that might not otherwise be open to us as observers. This way, we can learn about what goes on behind the scenes, build our network and have a better understanding of how the public service works, where we fit and how we can help support you.

Recognize and use our abilities. Take us up on our offer to reverse mentor you; we are eager and willing to share our expertise. We are grateful to be able to give back to the organization and to you – our manager. As an example, emerging technologies are a natural fit for our demographic. We are prepared to facilitate their expansion to help advance the public service as a workplace of the future – part of the Clerk’s priorities.

Give frequent, honest and constructive feedback – and let us provide feedback too – and not just at performance appraisal time. Please tell us more than “your work is good; there are no issues.” If we need to work on our communication skills, tell us. If we do something really well, congratulate us, and let us take on additional challenges. We welcome your regular feedback so we can make improvements, grow and learn. In return, we are happy to give you feedback and share our innovations with you. We need to feel that our creativity and ideas matter. Our ideas may need work, but with your help, we can bring them to life.

Provide us with challenges. We thrive on challenging work; we know that even the most interesting projects have less glamorous aspects. When we know the work we are doing matters, we’re more than happy to jump in and take it on with full force.

Strive to be a dynamic leader. We believe that leaders must be genuine in their actions and their work. Leaders trust those who are competent in their duties with added responsibility. Leaders further goals and offer support to not only their direct staff, but also to anyone in the organization. Leaders clearly communicate their goals, develop and nurture relationships, manage conflict and deal with poor-performance issues when necessary. Great leaders set high standards and expect the same of their employees. They see the bigger picture, and help us to see it and achieve it. As we continue to grow as leaders, we strive to develop these competencies and hope to learn from your example.

We all know that any job can be a dream job if we respect, have confidence in, and trust our managers and those we work with, but also have respect and trust from our colleagues. We have more ideas that we would like to share with you specific to our work units and departments. Please allow us the opportunity to discuss this letter through open dialogue. We also would appreciate your insights on how we can help you achieve your goals and objectives, and what you would like to see from us to make our workplace the best it can be.


The Federal Youth Network


This article was wiki-composed by the Federal Youth Network, captured from regional focus groups, GCPEDIA, GCConnex, GCForums, LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.