VIDEO OF THE MONTH: Louisiana Local Technical Assistance Program's (LTAP) "Innovation Showcase" Video
This video from our colleagues in Louisiana highlights innovations at a local level. The video illustrates the value of recognizing and rewarding the good work of their crews and shows the world how great their innovations are and how we can learn from them.
ARTICLE OF THE MONTH: "An Effective Public Works Leader Delegates" by the New Hampshire Technology Transfer Center
Public works leaders are busy people, and finding ways to effectively handle the mountain of work is a critical skill. When people try to do everything, they often become exhausted and ineffective managers. By engaging the team, managers can dramatically increase their effectiveness. Many try to do everything themselves, effectively hoarding work. They believe that if they can do the job well and do it right, why delegate?
A public works manager's job is to manage work. The town expects the department to get things done and the volume is generally too great for one person to do alone. Therefore, the ability to delegate effectively is an essential skill for the public works leader and manager.
Good mentors do not take their responsibility as a mentor lightly. They feel invested in the success of the mentee. Usually, this requires someone who is knowledgeable, compassionate, and possesses the attributes of a good teacher or trainer. Excellent communication skills are also required. A good mentor is committed to helping their mentees find success and gratification in their chosen profession. Overall good mentoring requires empowering the mentee to develop their own strengths, beliefs, and personal attributes.
A good mentor exhibits the personal attributes it takes to be successful in the field. By showing the mentee what it takes to be productive and successful, they are demonstrating the specific behaviors and actions required to succeed in the field. Remember, the positive attitude must go both ways. It's important that you always treat your mentor with the utmost professionalism. If you are lucky enough to find a mentor, hold on tight, and take the relationship seriously.
It is well documented that the millennial generation does not like to talk on the telephone. They view the hand-held mobile device as an instant communication tool—most handy for texting and social media posting.
So, what's with the rest of us? Why aren't we using the telephone more?
I grew up in the generation that talked on the phone incessantly. Every day after school I could be found on one of the home extensions, chatting with my friends about the events of the day. Because of this, I suspect, I would much rather talk to someone than type them a message.
Recently I found myself in an email conversation that went back-and-forth about six times. It seemed likely there would be a seventh time, so I picked up the phone and made a call.