Today marks the beginning of Public Service Excellence Award initiative. This programme is a new and improved form of what was known as the Employee of the Quarter Award.
I very much support the Public Service Excellence Award because it highlights public servants in all areas of the public service and the community. Employees can be nominated not only by peers in the same department, but also by individuals in other departments or ministries.
I am particularly pleased with the new categories in which the individuals will be awarded: Leadership in Excellence, Personal and Professional Excellence, Customer Service, Administrative Support, Volunteer Service, Organisational Development, Scientific/Engineering or Technical Achievements and Heroism. This gives a focus to those who want to excel and strive to be a better public servant.
A new Ministerial committee that has been established to help determine who deserve the awards and to make sure that the applicants have been fairly judged. This should encourage the political leadership of our Territory to be an integral part of the process of staff development, to celebrate success as well as to alert us to those areas we need to improve. This is the essence of leadership to show the way, and to empower individuals who are striving for positive recognition. Leadership comes from an old Anglo Saxon word “Ley” which means a path. The task of leadership is to show the path and encourage and empower people to follow it.
In parallel, the Recognition Steering Group is in place to make sure the award ceremony will have a positive outcome and an empowering atmosphere. This should encourage other public servants to strive to be better.
Over the coming months, you can expect to hear more about the changes that are taking place throughout the government service. From here we have to build on what has been achieved thus far.
It is my belief that with the continued support of the Government and the hard working men and women of the public service we can make this programme meaningful and successful. I hope that members of the public service, as well as the BVI community at large, will take away a fuller understanding of what the present initiatives mean for them.
In closing, I would like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to the members of the public service. Your jobs are not easy; public servants work with limited resources and are asked to meet our Territory’s ever growing demand for public services and satisfy increasing expectations. You do not work for personal enrichment, but the satisfaction which comes from serving your community and your country and making the world a better place. I applaud your efforts, and encourage you to continue performing at your very best.
Finally, I encourage all public servants, particularly managers and including those on the sister islands, to take part in the Public Service Excellence Award Programme. Nominate people you see trying to improve, celebrate success and encourage those who strive to be better. This is an opportunity for you to celebrate the wonderfully diverse, vibrant, and dynamic organisation to which you belong. It is also an opportunity to help make it stronger and better able to meet the demands of the public at large.
I wish this programme much success now and in the future.