Masterclass Agenda

Online: 13 October 
** Timings are in AEDT 

For many months now, “public sector culture reform” has become an oft quoted phrase. But what exactly is the current culture in the Australian public sector and why is it important?  
The public sector covers a wide variety of functions and responsibilities – from national security, defence services, national budgets, education, health, welfare services, parks and recreation and waste management. It is usually a regulated work environment and held to a high standard of ethics and behaviour responsible for serving our communities. Obviously, it also sometimes falls short of such standards.  
We will explore the evolution of Australian public sector culture and how it’s impacted organisational performance and employee engagement.  We will look at organisational dynamics and what we must understand about culture to optimise organisations and how they operate.  
This phrase is a call to action regarding the importance of culture and getting it ‘right’. How do we know what culture we want, and how do we develop that culture to create the right context and dynamics for performance and ownership of organisational objectives?  Culture must work in conjunction with strategy for the organisation to be successful. 
This session explores several models relating to cultural maturity, how creating a circle of safety in our organisations (Simon Sinek) and working above the line allows our employees to fully engage with no reservation in delivery and innovation.  
Practical Activity - small group exercises to test how to apply cultural maturity assessments and ‘above the line’ principles. 
This session will explore the impact of leaders on setting culture and leading cultural change. 
  • Impacting culture through leading by example 
  • How the absence of effective leadership is a negative for culture 
  • How empathy and emotional intelligence are key leadership skills 
  • What the conditions are for true empowerment and ownership  
  • What responsibilities do leaders have in aligning their organisational practices with the Respect@Work recommendations?
Workshop Session – group activity on leading change, exploring emotional intelligence, what does your team need to do differently to have a positive impact on culture? What can your team do to affect change?   
This session will explore what to do when culture is not ideal or working against organisational outcomes. 
  • How to address poor or unhelpful cultural paradigms 
  • Examining the flaws in the system that will form the basis of the independent inquiry into workplace culture 
  • Are the problems that have plagued the Federal Government endemic to the public sector, and how can they be eliminated and/or prevented? 
  • Explore how to challenge discrimination, harassment, and antisocial behaviour in the public sector through safe and effective techniques 
  • Addressing instances of harassment, abuse, or neglect from those in leadership positions  
  • The important of giving effective feedback 
  • Self-regulation and effective communication in leaders and why it is essential to culture  

Online: 14 October 
** Timings are in AEDT 

This session will explore how to manage the inevitable gap between your organisation’s aspirational culture statement written in policy manuals and the way people actually behave every day, under pressure. 
  • Building Trust 
  • Espoused values versus observed behaviours  
  • The importance of healthy conflict 
  • Understanding the leverage points for enhancing culture  
  • Creating an environment where challenging senior staff is encouraged 
Practical Activities  
Role play - using various techniques for effective communication to influence behaviours 
This session will look at how we understand the human response to change and help our colleagues overcome resistance to change. 
  • Cases study on culture and why it matters during change 
  • What can we learn for the private sector? 
  • Human transition and the reasons change is challenging for culture 
  • How to create shared culture rather than adopting an existing culture  
Practical Activities - group activity to explore human responses to change. Role play to model lessons as they would apply to your most difficult, but important client. 
This session will consider how to set and maintain the culture over time. 
  • Responding to the Respect@Work Report and the independent inquiry into public sector culture 
  • Who sets the cultural parameters? 
  • How to monitor it via KPIs and other measures 
  • What is needed to maintain progress? 
  • Is the culture still fit for purpose?
“You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do make a difference. And you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.’ 
Jane Goodall 
This session brings together all the take home lessons for participants to impact the culture of their team or their organisation. 
Practical Activity - brainstorming sessions to bring together the ideas from the Masterclass into take-home actions.