The Creative Bureaucracy is an idea in development. At its heart it connects three strands of thinking.
One is that all bureaucracies have trapped talent, people that have much more to offer and contribute given the right conditions. This goes to obvious and subtle systems and expectations. The way things are done. They can involve invisible rules and expectations that everyone knows and follows. We are trying to understand better the conditions that support people to bring much more to their work in the bureaucracy.
The second strand is that the grand interconnecting challenges of our era demand different ways of thinking, working, taking action. We need to go beyond the perennial conversations around silos and cross departmental working to get to the deeper questions beneath the surface. We are trying to understand how governments can better prepare themselves to have the agility, intelligence and creativity they will need deal with this emerging era.
A third strand is that how well or poorly governments work can be seen in the fabric and the atmosphere of a city. Government decisions are visible in the streets, the buildings, the services, how well things connect, the quality of the environment, the sense of direction, what gets funded and what doesn’t.
In the Creative Bureaucracy we argue that the ‘lived experience’ for people working within government matters. We need people to bring their full selves to work. We need to find ways to mobilise talent. We need atmospheres that are uplifting and human centred. Because the ‘spillover’ effect will be a stronger capability to deal with big problems as well as a sparking a culture across a city which encourages rather than discourages.
If you want to know more about how the Creative Bureaucracy program is developing or you’d like to participate please contact me through this site.
‘The Creative Bureaucracy’ by Charles Landry and Margie Caust was published late in 2017.