Category Archives: Competing priorities

Supporting integrity

This week the WA CCC released a new report. The report acknowledges the difficulty of reporting suspected misconduct in the WA public sector, but notes the Commission ‘depends on honest public officers reporting suspicious behaviour’:

Every day, as Employee Assistance Providers (EAP)  to state government employers we talk with people faced with ethical dilemmas; with making ethical decisions on potential integrity risks. It’s a specialty of EAP as EAP Counsellors are trained in ethics and rational decision making.

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Heading to Christmas

As we head to Christmas many managers confide in us that they are feeling tired by their attempts to address long term issues with or between staff. They say they hope that staff will return in the new year refreshed;putting previous issues with other staff behind them. But some go on to say this has not happened in the past and there needs to be a new approach.

Christmas and the New Year does give opportunity to raise issues. However the conversation to bring these to the surface needs some planning.

We need to be aware that the festive season often involves staff in more competing priorities than they normally experience. The conversation you are contemplating having, needs to not trigger these existing tensions, but rather give hope that overrides tensions; overrides the tensions that would otherwise prevent your staff member in working through alternatives to what they are currently doing or how they are behaving.

To have this conversation you may want to take some time to rehearse it with one of our expert guides.

In our quiet, comfortable consulting rooms, many managers are able to download, problem solve and refocus. All you need to do to access this service is to contact us. We’re here to assist:

What is the ‘right’ thing?

Taking Accountable & Ethical Decision Making to the Next Level

Anyone who has worked in government for the past few years will have come across training for Accountable and Ethical Decision Making in some format; whether it is online, or our preferred method, face to face. Training about accountable and ethical decision making is becoming increasingly important for government agencies who are aiming to maintain high standards of integrity and protect their reputation as impartial, unbiased providers of services in the public interest.

But do your staff apply these accountability concepts to their everyday work practices, every time?

Are you comfortable that your staff are clear about what is the ‘right’ thing to do in every work situation? 

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Distressed staff – how can you help?

Many managers who want to assist distressed staff have the best of intentions but are not sure how much they should, or should not get involved. The delicate balance of empathy and needed outcomes can pull a manager’s priorities in competing directions.

Making the decision to assist and then how to have that assisting conversation, what boundaries to set and what offers to make, can cause a manager angst and affect their own productivity.

Here are some basics that may help:

  1. Managing your own emotions by being practiced and well balanced going into the conversation;
  2. Not making offers without seeking guidance about your obligations as an employer representative;
  3. Having the capacity to listen within your area of competence and then knowing how to refer to others including expert services who may be of assistance to your employee.

If it’s difficult to find a trusted colleague to rehearse your intended conversation, it’s possible to gain our support. Just go to our confidential contact form: