High Performance Organization (HPO)
We are a results oriented organization, which values its employees, provides for growth potential and focuses on core values and excellence.
To make a better tomorrow by being a professional organization that provides a vibrant, caring, efficient and safe community.
Integrity - We conduct ourselves, at all times, in a manner that is ethical, trustworthy and professional.
Vision - The organization focuses on actively discovering and creating new ways of doing things.
Accountability - We are stewards of the public trust, accountable to the needs of Council, citizens, and our colleagues.
Leadership - The opportunity to lead is available to all who desire it. Our leadership focuses on outstanding results for the betterment of the individual, the organization, and the community.
United - We consistently seek opportunities for coordination and collaboration, working together as a team.
Excellence - Maintaining the highest level of performance.
Creating a High Performance Organization to Live Up to Our Values
In February 2016, the supervisory group, Leaders for Excellence and Action in the Delivery of Services (LEADS) Team had a focused, three-day training on what makes a High Performing Organization (HPO). This training provided insight on how we, as an organization, can enhance performance and improve the work experiences of employees.
This training concentrated on the interactions among organizational units, staff, customers, partners, and other stakeholders and focus on the improvement of organizational processes and systems that can impede performance.
Team Vision (TV) is a participative leadership team that leads in cross-organizational issues that have significant, long-term impact. TV performs problem-solving and improvement-oriented activities and recommends mechanisms that allow the Organization to live our Leadership Philosophy, thereby accomplishing our Mission and Vision.
Activities involve building a collective leadership mentality focused on the City's Leadership Philosophy, assuming responsibility for linking units into a whole, and creating "parallel organizational structures" where the thinking/leadership work can be done before returning ideas to the Executive Team for implementation.
Evaluate current practices and policies in departments, divisions and team for alignment with the City's Leadership Philosophy, Mission, Vision and Values.
- Solicit input from employees regarding any changes to the current policies and practices that would benefit employees and improve their work performance and job satisfaction. This should be done in a manner that would ensure participation/representation of a vast majority of staff.
- Formulate new policies, guidelines and recommendations.
- Solicit feedback on the recommendations from the employees.
- Submit recommendations to the Executive Team for implementation.
All departments, including divisions are represented on TV. Members are appointed on a long-term basis to facilitate stability and continuity of the team.
The City Manager will service as the liaison to the Executive Team.
Method of Operation
TV will operate as a parallel organization with each member having an equal standing. The team members will make every effort to reach consensus, whereby all members will agree with or agree to fully support the team's recommendation for each decision or action. Those matters where consensus cannot be reached will be referred to the Executive Team. The issues discussed by TV will be documented with a summary of the discussion and the alternative solutions or actions, including the explanation of opposing views if consensus is not reached.
All team members will share the responsibility to inform, collaborate, and consult with division co-workers. All team decisions and actions must be supportable and sustainable in the organization's hierarchy for implementation.
Conduct of the Members
The conduct of team members will reflect the organizational values. Each member will actively participate in the team's deliberations and in carrying out team assignments. Members will respect the team process and one another by considering all ideas expressed, abiding by the established ground rules, being thoroughly prepared for each meeting, maintaining the confidentiality agreed upon, and sharing equally in the responsibility to reach consensus successfully.
Leadership Philosophy Development Tasks
- Define the Leadership Behaviors
- Community orientated
- Determine how these behaviors are reinforced throughout the organization.
To be truly high performing we must take a systematic approach to the work of leadership. We need to shift the traditional mindset of leadership from that which is done by a few people at the tip of a pyramid to leadership as being a set of responsibilities that must be undertaken throughout the organization. All City Staff are leaders as we accomplish our leadership responsibilities, no matter our technical functions or level in the organization.
Leadership Philosophy and Productive Behaviors
The LEADS Team developed our Leadership Philosophy and Productive Behaviors associated with a HPO culture. Our Leadership Philosophy should permeate the organization and should state the beliefs about the nature of the people in the organization and their attitudes toward work, what makes people choose to be motivated, the distribution of knowledge and creativity (and therefore how we choose to make decisions), and how work is defined.
We believe that the best solutions come from empowered teams with the knowledge and shared vision of the community's goals. We promote a legacy of excellence through a culture of trust, collaboration, and encouragement of personal growth and the celebration of our achievements. We seek to attract adaptable, creative and motivated individuals who share our community pride and dedication to exceptional public service.
Individual behavioral values need to be identified to guide personal actions. These have to be enhanced with examples so that the valued behaviors are relevant in real-life situations and can be measured. The behaviors identified are:
- Collaboration - Contributes, regardless of responsibilities, to achieve a common goal.
- Encouraging- Promotes a positive environment to help others reach their goals.
- Empowering - Encourages individuals to find solutions.
- Trustworthy - Demonstrates transparency and integrity.
- Dedicate - Personally invested in the vision and goals of the organization.
- Creative - Uses resources and skills in imaginative and innovative ways.
- Open-minded - Listens and is receptive to different ideas and opinions while solving problems.
- Adaptable - Adjusts as needed in order to accomplish the goals at hand.
- Celebrator y- Recognizes the achievements and mile-stones of the organization and others, offering praise when a job is done well.
- Community Oriented - Takes pride in being engaged in the community.
- Visionary- Thinks into the future and adapts current needs to achieve long-term goals.
To become HPO we need to align behind a common vision focused on successful outcomes. Together we need to create an engaging work culture based upon fundamental values and aligned behaviors. (Organizational Philosophy System Preference, Leadership Philosophy, Productive Behaviors, Mission, Vision and Values – IVALUE)
We want to create a work culture that unleashes the effort we put into work and life challenges. We, as employees, do not become engaged unless the culture of the organization is developed and reinforced to support it. This requires developing a shared set of organizational values that lead to a positive work culture and the creation of disciplined ways to continuously involve employees in the decisions that affect their units and business areas.
When will we be a High Performance Organization?
Getting organized to accomplish this work is no small task. Such improvement requires a long-term disciplined effort (years). People throughout the organization must see themselves as responsible for the collective success of their unit and of the organization as a whole. This means the change mechanisms have to be established throughout the organization. It requires that groups of people doing this work form leadership teams at every level of the organization.