Local Government Communication and Stakeholder Strategies

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The Council hired the Meerkat Group to improve relations within a specified department and the relations within their organisation. The project succeeded in readying the department for engagement across the entire Council within a very complex ‘whole of Council’ environment.  Key words from the organisation were used and formed the key messaging for an improvement program. The department was not held in high regard and many of the staff within the department were ‘disconnected’. Departmental staff were located across multiple sites and had varying degrees of connection with each other and external stakeholders. Morale was low.

An internal survey among the wider organisation was to be held which collated responsiveness on other departments. It was not looking good of the selected department.  And the survey was to be held in the next ten weeks.

The program had the following objectives:

• Identify key stakeholder and user groups            

• Establish Engagement goals

• Apply the Values, Principles and Mission of the City Council policies

• Implement a two-way communication model approach

• Identify key Processes

• Identify required behavioural / attitudinal and knowledge areas of influence

• Incorporate short term objectives (short term wins)    

• Identify contribution of Processes to Council Activities

• Consider areas of risk and leverage and make recommendations      

• Establish priorities based on significance

• Design a 12-month program for the Infrastructure & Projects Department, including a one-page summary

• Set 12-month goals from the Engagement Design and Process Review schedule.  

The Meerkat Group discussed targets and methodologies, and a criticality analysis of relationships was developed.  The department was seen to be unified and communicated strongly within the wider Council. Individuals ‘owned’ their job description and became supportive of their colleagues presenting a unified departmental approach.

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