Helping Sweden to learn from our mistakes with austerity in the public sector; and how to move forward with systems thinking and practical collaborative and person centred approaches
We have partnered with agencies in Sweden and entered into dialogue with well respected thinkers and leader sin Sweden, who are wanting to take the public sector in Sweden further and higher. They recognise the challenges they face in the future with service delivery and funding.
I have been helping them to refocus their perceptions and designs from one of tradition and bureacracy, to one of collaboration and participation.
It is refreshing to help people in Sweden to learn from the mistakes that we int he UK have made in the public sector. I relish helping public sector leaders in Sweden to get some learning of what not to do! It is a pleasure to see in workshops that I have given how those leaders listen and take thoughtful stock of their situations.
Sweden is a small country that has the ability to easily have national discussions amongst its leaders of the public sector. It is refreshing to see how so many managers understand each other in the public sector, and are clear about the challenges they face. Unlike in the UK, their focus is on discussing the latest issues they face and those descussions are important, active and listened to. It is part of their way of collaborative descision-making.
One of the downsides of this decision-making process is that leaders in Sweden often discuss lots, and that might make them act later, or perhaps not at all. Consensus is all important in Sweden, and that consensus can act against decision-making.
However, in the UK, we seem to be quite the opposite; all action and little collaborative discussion. Our momentum forward appears to be born from the dreams that certain politicians have upon waking up from a nights sleep. Margaret Thatcher was a popular figure, and one of her popular characteristics was the ability to decide and act. And our conflictive political system seems to relish this style of leadership.