Sally Bourner of West Midlands Police reflecting on 21st century Century Public Servant

Notes paraphrasing Sally Bourner’s comments

  • We operate on a  global stage, more children aged 2-5 can work a smartphone than can tie their shoelaces.
  • 65% of consumers are frustrated by inconsistent service
  • 84% of aged consumers say the internet has changed they way they receive services
  • more people have access to a mobile phone than freshwater

Ask how these facts make people feel:  responses “depressed” and “ever increasing inequalities”

It is a complex and challenging world.  It also mean much optimism.  Public servants can now connect with the public is better ways.  Fundamentally our relationship with human beings is the most important thing.  Our job is to make a difference in the lives of citizens.

The research thoughts:

Leaders need to take this complexity and simplify it.  Sifting it and connecting it with core values of public service.  Human being are what the work is about, so the people who are public servants need to connect with the people who are citizens.

Clarity of purpose.  Why are we here and what are we here to do.

Prioritise.  There is endless demand for public service,  so a crucial skill is to focus on things that matter, including protecting the most vulnerable from harm.  Place is also important – because from place comes pride, but much policing now happens in private spaces, their homes.

Partnership.  Collaborating is the only was we will fundamentally change people’s lives. Mark and I work closely in Solihull for three years. Partnership matter for moral and vocational reasons, to help people.  It matters because it is the only way we can effectively reduce demand. (how do we balance reactive work with long term work that makes lives better).  It also matters because of money – it makes it go further.

What is the valuable commodity we bring as public servants – Time, and it’s the thing we have least of.

Sally reads….

“the biggest problem in the business world is doing too much, to much busyness…. Harvard business school finds that  “masterful inactivity” or looking out of thw window time.  So is there a meeting you can acoid or a dinner cancel. true change comes from creating the time to think and look ahead.



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