Have you considered applying for a 2018 Overseas Manager Exchange? Applications are open.

Katherine Trought, Communications and Engagement Director at Environment Canterbury, reflects on her experience as a 2016 recipient to NSW, Australia.

Katherine Trought’s 2016 Overseas Exchange Manager experience to NSW provided her with rare time-out to reflect on her own work, her values, and her role in local government.

“It was fabulous and inspiring to spend a dedicated fortnight observing first-hand the work that my international colleagues are doing and what they are achieving for their communities.”

Katherine visited Sydney’s Northern Beaches, Central Coast, and City of Lake Macquarie Councils and observed that her Australian colleagues hold similar values and have the same long-term commitment to their communities.

“Australian councils are putting the customer at the centre of all they do. Customer orientation is something we’ve been working on at Environment Canterbury for a number of years, so it was interesting to see different approaches.

“We are always striving to do better for our community and the environment. An opportunity to learn new things from an international group of individuals who value public service and are committed to their communities is very affirming.

“The big take-out was the passion of my international colleagues which, for me, is the hallmark of public service.

"I'm thankful for what I gained through JLT's sponsorship of my exchange."

Four exchanges are being offered in 2018. One to the US, one to Canada, and two to Australia. The Exchanges are supported by JLT and Civic Financial Services.

Australasian Management Challenge

The Management Challenge Pre-Challenge task has just been released – don’t let the other teams get a head start – register now!

The Pre-Challenge task is a great way to build teamwork by getting your team focused on a task and will also provide real community outcomes for your Council. Many of the consultation-based programmes developed by teams for the Pre-Challenge task last year went on to become real council programmes and projects.

The following councils have already registered.
Tauranga City Council
New Plymouth District Council
Whakatane District Council
Hauraki District Council
Hastings District Council
Wellington City Council
Otorohanga District Council
Waikato District Council
Bay of Plenty Regional Council
Otago Regional Council
Taupo District Council
Christchurch City Council
Rotorua Lakes Council
Western Bay of Plenty District Council

LG Executive Leaders Programme

Through ongoing discussions with senior people across the Local Government sector, a need emerged for the development of managers who are `near-CE ready`. SOLGM's response to this need is the LG Executive Leaders Programme. The Programme is effectively progressing Tier 2 managers - one quarter of the last cohort took on Acting CE roles.

If you wish to apply for this programme or express your interest, please email events@solgm.org.nz.

LG Lawyers' Day

At the recent LG Lawyers' Day hosted by Simpson Grierson, SOLGM presented its Legal Compliance Modules, a suite of online resources that set out legally compliant processes and procedures in local government. Richard Mabon, SOLGM’s Principal Advisor, Sector Improvement invited In-House Legal Counsel within local government to contact SOLGM if they don’t yet know how to access the password-protected Modules. One delegate said, “I’m sure this is a tool we are going to use a lot now that we know we can.”

Malaysian Delegation

On 15 December, a Malaysian Government delegation headed by the Malaysian Productivity Corporation visited SOLGM to discuss how to support better regulation with SOLGM CE Karen Thomas. The delegation included representatives from Malaysia's central and local governments.

Malaysia has been undertaking activities to reduce unnecessary regulatory burden and increase productivity. While making good progress in their overall ranking in the Doing Business Report by the World Bank, the objective of the Malaysian delegation’s visit to New Zealand was to study best practices in business licensing and permits that minimise burdens on businesses, particularly at the local government level.

The Malaysian delegation also visited Auckland Council, Rotorua Lakes Council, Wellington City Council and LGNZ.

SOLGM CE meets with Best Paper prize recipient

After Danielle Petrie-Deely was presented with the 2017 SOLGM Prize for Best Paper in Introduction to Public Policy at the Annual Victoria University of Wellington's School of Government Prize-giving Ceremony, she met with SOLGM CE Karen Thomas on 15 December.

Their discussion flowed from Danielle's plans for the future (working with World Vision in Timor-Leste then a return to New Zealand to tackle climate change or child poverty) to Karen's observations on the scope of local government in New Zealand compared to the US and UK.