As agencies plan and implement the President's initiative to restructure their workforces and streamline their organizations, they need to recognize how human capital contributes to achieving missions and goals. Effective changes can only be made and sustained through the cooperation of leaders, union representatives, and employees throughout the organization. All members of an organization must understand the rationale for making organizational and cultural changes because everyone has a stake in helping to shape and implement initiatives as part of agencies' efforts to meet current and future challenges. Agencies can improve their performance by the way they treat and manage their people.
In this report we have identified six key practices used in selected initiatives to help to empower and involve employees in identifying and implementing needed changes. These practices are
providing sustained leadership commitment to open communications and support culture change,
engaging unions to include all perspectives in achieving consensus about needed changes,
using a variety of formal and on-the-job training approaches to facilitate the development of new skills,
encouraging employees to combine their resources and talents by working together in teams,
involving employees in planning and sharing performance information so that employees help shape agencies' goals and better understand how their day-to-day activities contribute to results, and
empowering staff by giving them the authority they need to make decisions and effectively conduct agency operations.
Each federal agency will need to consider the applicability of these practices within the context of its own mission, needs, and culture. Nevertheless, we believe that agencies can improve their performance, enhance employees' morale and job satisfaction, and provide a working environment where employees have a better understanding of the goals and objectives of their organizations and how they are contributing to the results that American citizens want. We believe that the practices we identified should be considered by other agencies as they seek to improve their unique operations and respond to the challenges they are facing.