Nick Allen is the Manager, Community Development, in the Shire of Wyndam, East Kimberley, Western Australia. Nick is also a PSMP Graduate.
One of the highlights of supporting Nick as he explored this challenging set of issues in his community, was his ability to engage with the program content and explore the various tools and processes.
He used the models to deeply understand the needs and wants of the key constituents of the stakeholder landscape. He was able to bring to life the complexity of the problem he set out to address in a very human and empathic way.
It was clear from the final project report that the Public Sector Management Program really helped Nick to develop a strong ability to engage with ways to create and deliver a tangible program in his remote community that would deliver positive outcomes for his community.
Nick was very committed to his learning journey. He kept the ‘real world’ elements of his worktop of mind and continually thought about ways that he could leverage this learning to enhance the social infrastructure of regional and remote communities.
I am confident Nick will be able to share and put to good use many of the tools and processes he explored in the PSMP in his everyday workplace. Read Nick’s story below.
Who or what influenced/inspired you to apply?
I have worked in local government for over ten years in a number of different roles and I was looking for a new challenge.
I wanted to do something that would benefit me personally and professionally.
My direct line manager had completed the course and encouraged me to look into the PSMP as he believed that the study had helped him enormously. I originally had enrolled in the course the year before however had to defer due to my youngest daughter becoming very sick and spending 2 months in intensive care and a further 9 months at PCH.
Given my circumstances at home and my ongoing work commitments, I wanted to complete some study that allowed me some flexibility yet still was beneficial for me and my employer. The PSMP course offered this with the online component and the face-to-face sessions.
What was your personal growth story? (did you have one??)
There were a number of things that I found beneficial but in particular, I believe that the course has helped me become a better leader/manager. Learning to develop people’s strengths rather than work on their weaknesses and understanding people’s approaches to how they work in teams has definitely helped improve my skills as a manager.
It has taught me some new tools and methods to engage with members of the State Government, Councillors and CEO’s to ensure that I deliver favourable outcomes for my employer.
How did this study transform you / or the organisation that you work for?
Each of the units had relevance to my current workplace and the skills that I learned and developed during my PSMP journey I utilise daily in my workplace. I have utilised a number of my assessments for Council reports and to my surprise tools such as Public Value Scorecard, Rich picture, and Stakeholder Mapping are now being regularly presented to Council by members of my team.
What was the highlight of your study experience?
A highlight for me was establishing working and personal relationships with others participating in the course. COVID impacted our course early on, as early as the first unit.
Most of the units were delivered online and via Zoom. However, this did not stop the group from developing networks that still exist today, some months after graduation.
There are some really skilled people that participate in the course with a diverse skill set and it has been very helpful to remain in contact with most participants not only to discuss the course at the time but even to be able to chat over work-related issues now.
What advice would you give to someone looking at trying to do what you have done?
I highly recommend the course. The unit facilitators are very supportive and are there to ensure that participants are not set up to fail.
The course is challenging and it takes commitment but you get a lot from the PSMP course both professionally and personally.
The Public Sector Management Program (PSMP) is a nationally recognised and dynamic study option catering specifically for mid-level managers in the Australian public service and non-Government organisations.