We’re back with the new “New Sensation” feature. We’ve updated the questions based on your feedback. You’ll now learn about the best YouTube videos on the web, read about gift ideas for the holiday season, and learn about the career accomplishments of our new members. As a reminder, we developed this feature to introduce you to new ELGL members and as a way on connecting ELGL members with similar interests.
Garland (TX) Director of Organizational Development
Education: The University of Texas at Austin – The Red McCombs School of Business, Bachelors, BBA: General Business; BA: Government and University of North Texas, Masters, MPA: Public Administration
Experience: Administrator, City of Garland
Q & A
Tell us about three of your biggest accomplishments.
- Getting my Master of Public Administration while working full time in the profession, getting promoted to head of my department, and successfully expanding the department’s role and level of service within a five year period.
- Leading the team that automated all of our municipal court processes to create a paperless court from citation intake through disposition of cases and warrants, delivering realized cost efficiencies and increased compliance rates.
- Providing the quality and project management services over our Downtown Redevelopment Program, including public private partnerships, infrastructure, and City facilities construction projects.
(Complete this sentence) I feel old when I…….. realize how long it has been since my college days at UT Austin. (Hook ‘em Horns!)
Tell us about two mistakes that you’ve made that we can learn from.
Taking on too much work, resulting in too many projects in the pipeline at one time. This results in too much “noise” in the system, and ultimately has the opposite effect desired – existing projects take longer to deliver and you often feel as though you weren’t able to accomplish everything you would have liked to on the project, because you are too rushed to give it the focus you’d like.
Focusing too much attention on delivering the urgent/visible priorities for senior management and not enough time mentoring employees. In the short run, you may feel like you have no time for this, but in the long run, the team is able to accomplish more. Failing to develop employees adds even more work to you in the long run, and possibly to the high-performing members of your team.
Name your favorite YouTube videos.
As part of being an ELGL member, we give you a chance to redo or change any part of your life. How would you use it? (Note: My life is perfect, I am perfect, I would never change anything is not an acceptable response.)
I would have felt more empowered to think bigger when I was younger – perhaps a foreign exchange/study program in Europe, or attend graduate school at Georgetown or in the New England area prior to settling in on my full-time job.
- Daryl Johnston, former Dallas Cowboy (very insightful speaker on high performance teams);
- Organizational Project Management (delivering organizational strategy through project portfolio management).
(Complete these phrases) Best thing about the….
80’s was……. the growth in music media, video, and desktop computing accessibility
90’s was…… the economy
00’s was….. national pride and support from strangers for victims/troops following several tragedies
Last year was….. signs of economic recovery
Today is…. possibilities
Martin Glenn, Deputy City Manager – intelligent, incisive, empowering, loyal, approachable
Bryan Bradford, Assistant City Manager – intelligent, patient, kind, communicator, leader
What’s your least favorite thing about humanity?
How in-humane we can be.
Email from the University of North Texas Public Administration Department
Fast forward one year, what will factor into your decision on whether to renew your ELGL membership?
If I think it has the potential to be a good recruiting tool for our organization.
Give us two ideas for attracting and retaining talented individuals to the public sector.
More visibility to the professional-level positions that exist within local government, especially for high school students coming out of small towns. I never realized there was the potential to have a professional career (beyond public safety or public works specialists) in local government until I stumbled upon it after graduation from college.
Encourage undergrads to take business courses or urban planning courses, then focus on a master’s degree in public administration or urban planning in graduate school. My undergraduate degree in business administration has helped me far more in my public service career than my undergraduate government (political science) degree. Business courses provide a solid foundation; the master’s curriculum aligns expectations and identifies the unique aspects about public service and how it differs from the private sector.
What questions should we have asked? What attracted you to a career in the public sector, and to your current job in particular?
Here is an article I recently wrote for our City intranet that partially answers that question: For Me, It’s a Calling by Becky King, City of Garland (TX).
I’m the co-founder and executive director of ELGL. I love my job. Other things I love: local government, my family, my dog Michael Jordan, sandwiches, naps, books, and skee-ball.