Rules for boosting productivity in any workspace

In the private sector, it’s universally accepted that professional development is one of the responsibilities of an employer. The public sector, however, is only just catching on.

Professional leadership coach and founder of EKAnomics, Ebong Eka works with the public sector because “it’s one of the largest employers — not only in this area, but I’d venture to say in most of the country.”

“There’s this huge misconception that people who work in the government space aren’t motivated to do their best… part of the reason that misconception exists is that most people don’t have an idea as to what they really want to be doing,” said Eka.

Eka said that by bringing new ideas to leadership development and training in the sector, this could be remedied, improving employee engagement.

“The average civil servant is not interested in the politics on Capitol Hill, and the politicians that are self-aggrandizing… you can quickly fall into apathy,” said Eka.

While most civil servants start their jobs excited to help, they soon “start understanding the nuances of the engine that you’re currently in, and you become apathetic to any change,” he said. The result is not only that the employee robs productivity and change from the company, but from themselves.

To fix this, there are two major steps, Eka said. “There’s motivation and inspiration… motivation is the spark that gets you going.” However, that’s not enough to enact and sustain change.

“Change requires more than just going to the gym once… the second piece is inspiration,” said Eka. It’s closer to a “slow burn, over time,” he said.

When Eka works with an agency, he focuses on two facets: leadership and employees. “Everybody has intrinsic and extrinsic motivation… inside could be something like more free time, something like more responsibility,” he said.

By making sure leadership understands that their employees can have complex, varied and important intrinsic motivation, and helping them achieve those motivations, productivity blossoms.

“It’s creating programs that are sustainable over a period of time, so that everybody actually gets what they really want,” said Eka.

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