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I am a Practitioner of 'The 7e Way of Leaders' where a Leader will Envision, Enable (ASK for TOP D), Empower, Execute, Energize, and Evolve grounded on ETHICS!

Friday, March 3, 2017

Daily Lessons from Life 02-03 March 2017 - Public Service and Cost of Business

Missed 02 March 2017 entry. So, catch up today with comments on 2 news items:

1. "Government is keeping a close eye on business costs, economy: Lim Hng Kiang

Minister for Trade and Industry (Trade) Lim Hng Kiang says new measures such as the impending hike in water prices, are expected to have a “moderate impact on business costs overall”."

It is great to learn that Minister Lim expects the impending hike in water prices are expected to have a 'moderate impact on business costs overall.'

I hope that his ministry or CASE or some Opposition Political Parties will keep track of the 'cost of business' when the 1st 15% water price increase kick-in in Jully 2017 and then July 2018.

We need to hold office holders' to their words right?

2. "Without an outstanding public service, Singapore won't be what it is: Shanmugam

SINGAPORE: Without an outstanding public service, Singapore would not have become what it is today – and without an outstanding public service, the country will not get to where it wants to be, said Minister for Home Affairs K Shanmugam on Friday (Mar 3).

Speaking in Parliament during his ministry's Committee of Supply debate, Mr Shanmugam noted the discussion about the public service that took place the last two days.

The MPs who spoke said that Singapore's civil service was generally corruption-free and competent, but called for it to exercise greater compassion: Nee Soon GRC MPs Lee Bee Wah and Louis Ng noted how some civil servants seemed more concerned with rules than what might benefit Singaporeans, and Nominated MP Kuik Shiao-Yin asked for more to be done to help the working poor.
"I can understand the frustrations of MPs in individual cases," said Mr Shanmugam.
"All of us face these cases. They arise for a number of reasons, for example structural reasons, inter-agency issues. But in perspective, these cases are the exception, not the rule. And in a large majority of cases, our public servants are outstanding, dedicated. They go well beyond the call of duty and serve with heart."
Mr Shanmugam noted that Singapore is where it is today because of three key reasons – its political leadership, the public service and the quality of its people. "If any one of these factors were absent, we would be in a very different place," he said.

Mr Shanmugam said that a critical factor was the immense dedication and commitment of Singapore's Home Team officers. "This is a survey on the police force. But at the broader level, it also gives a perspective to the discussions about the public service."
Noting that a large number of public servants go beyond the call of duty and serve with heart, he added: "I know the MPs who spoke (on Wednesday) share this view. I spoke with Dr Lee and Louis – they confirmed this to me. And NMP Kuik has made a Facebook post setting out her thinking along these lines.
"It is therefore good to see the position in context – without an outstanding public service, we won’t be here. And without an outstanding public service, we won’t get to where we want to be.
"Many things go right, so we don't think about them. The public service works very hard so that the rest of us can go about our lives seamlessly.""

Good to learn that the MPs and NMP brought out issues about the individual specific cases of 'poor' Public Services. That is REAL to the people involved.

Minister Shanmugam's defence of the Public Services as a whole is OK. The Police Survey results he got are surveys done by the MHA. The results are indeed very very good. At the same time, it is a bit stretch to conclude that the WHOLE Public Services are aOK too though many believed it to be so. Beliefs need to be validated by survey results. That's why we spend money to conduct survey. Of course, survey can be conducted in many ways to produce results the paymasters would want to see IF the survey is designed or conducted inappropriately.

The point is: what is REAL is the people who experienced 'poor' Public Services.

Having said that: it is important to keep the standard of public services and the civil servants at the highest level possible. They produce good results as they love their work and NOT because they make good money.

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