Steve davies's Blog Posts Tagged 'culture' (39)

Reinventing the ATO - Fact or fiction

Something does not add up. On the one hand the Australian Taxation Office is expending effort telling the community it is reinventing itself. On the other I am still being told, through very reliable sources, that the culture is still very much one permeated by fear, risk aversion and group think.

That does not surprise me one bit. Neither does the volume and nature of what looks like a rebadged version of the 'old' corporate spin. You only have to look at the bright and shiny…


Added by steve davies on March 25, 2015 at 11:30am — 15 Comments

Australian Public Service cult of leadership

An interesting account from Noel Towell on Don Russell's, former secretary of the Industry Department, talk at Australian National University's Crawford School of Public Policy in todays Canberra Times. Don Russell urges chiefs to flex muscles and 'save the APS'.…


Added by steve davies on April 1, 2014 at 9:30am — 9 Comments

The Australian Taxation Office slaps down staff

I was so looking forward to winding down in the lead up to the festive season. It doesn't look like this is going to happen.

The Canberra Times reports that the Australian Taxation Office needs major overhaul to avoid slipping backwards, review warns. True, but it makes…


Added by steve davies on December 5, 2013 at 8:01am — 3 Comments

Australian Public Service Commissioner seeks to channel whistleblowing

Today, the Canberra Times published an article entitled Whistleblower laws facing fine-tuning. Apparently, the Australian Public Service Commissioner, Stephen Sedgwick, informed the Senate committee on legal and constitutional affairs that the laws should not allow public servants to go 'forum shopping'.

Quite frankly, this is a bit rich given the…


Added by steve davies on April 30, 2013 at 11:00am — 35 Comments

Social media freedom charter

Today is the start of World Innovation and Creativity Week. What better day to release a social media freedom charter for Australian public servants.


The charter stands in contrast to the Australian Public Service Code of Conduct and the practices of many APS agencies. As we have seen and written about many a time on OZloop the practices of APS agencies do not reflect enlightened democratic values.




Added by steve davies on April 15, 2013 at 10:00am — 17 Comments

Death by corporate management

A great exclusive by Linton Besser @lb_online and Nick Phillips @NickySMH concerning a Call for inquiry as CSIRO comes under the microscope.

In this exclusive it is pointed out…


Added by steve davies on April 12, 2013 at 10:21am — 5 Comments

Ask not what . . . ask what you can . . .

Today I want to present a few challenges. To do that I am first going to step back in time. Not bad for someone whose preference is the future.


Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.


A great speech from John F. Kennedy in 1961. You can read the full text of President Kennedy's speech and view historical footage …


Added by steve davies on March 26, 2013 at 9:30am — 5 Comments

Freedom of Information Update - Agencies strike back

Undermining FOI and Open Government

The primary purpose of this post was (and still is), to provide an update on my freedom of information request to Comcare, the Australian Public Service Commission and there Australian Taxation Office. My request concerned the monitoring of OZloop and was quite detailed. If you haven't read it already, you might like to do so …


Added by steve davies on February 25, 2013 at 9:30am — 10 Comments

CSIRO says bullying claims are dodgy

In todays Canberra Times.

Lots of allegations have been tossed around by stakeholders and media in recent times and I would have to say that the basis for some of those are pretty dodgy,'' he said.

Over the last three years, to October 2012, there have been 11 allegations of bullying and harassment made in the CSIRO and 10 of those have subsequently not been substantiated.

CSIRO deputy chief executive of…


Added by steve davies on February 20, 2013 at 11:30am — 4 Comments

The death of organisational development : Let's go tribal



One of the more interesting debates I had when working within the Australian Public Service concerned organisational culture. To be precise, about the notion of reforming culture from the ground up.


Here I was taking some tech I was responsible for down that path and you'd think I'd committed heresy. Especially by pointing out that corporate culture change programmes are right up there with the tried…


Added by steve davies on January 8, 2013 at 12:00pm — 6 Comments

Australian Public Service Denial

No. This post is not about a new website called APSDenial. That being said, it is tempting to set up a satirical site highlighting the Australian Public Service's antics in relation to the bullying and mobbing of employees and the important systemic and cultural issues it raises.

Mind you the way things are going it would be interesting to re-write the…


Added by steve davies on December 10, 2012 at 10:16am — 5 Comments

Australian Public Service Bullying - Holding up the mirror

It's been a big year for bullying within the Australian Public Service. 


We are delighted with Recommendation 8 of the national bullying report where the committee concluded that,

. . . the allegations of misuse of the mental health assessment referral power within the APS that the Committee heard about signify that there is a need to monitor how that power is used and how often there are reviews on the grounds of misuse.




Added by steve davies on December 6, 2012 at 9:00am — 10 Comments

Senior federal official undermines online dialogue

After reading the Canberra Times article Bureaucrats warned against online gossip one could be forgiven for thinking that the 'silly season' has hit with a vengeance.


My major concern with what has been reported is that many of the views expressed are at odds…


Added by steve davies on November 30, 2012 at 10:30am — 2 Comments

Australian Tax Commissioner out : Is it time for Tax Office 2.0

I see that smartcompany has picked up on Crikey's report on the departure of the current Tax Commissioner Michael D'Ascenzo. Check out Why Swan moved the nation’s top tax man on.

Of course, the Taxation Office also issued its own announcement on the…


Added by steve davies on October 29, 2012 at 9:59am — 14 Comments

Gov 2.0 Conference Canberra 2012

Gov 2.0 Conference Canberra

Spring is officially here in Canberra. OK it doesn't feel quite like it yet. Except for those of us who are busily sneezing away of course. October will bring warmer weather and, for me, that means no more allergic…


Added by steve davies on September 4, 2012 at 11:30am — 2 Comments

Submission to Bullying Inquiry : The Totalitarian Practices of Corporate Human Resources

For quite a while now I've been working on my submission to the Australian Government inquiry in to workplace bullying. It has been a lengthy journey and there have been many discussions. What I have attempted to do is paint a clear sociological picture of workplace bullying in the Australian Public Service.

To varying degrees my submission applies to organisations outside the APS. However, I have focused on the APS for one simple reason. The APS serves our Federal Government…


Added by steve davies on July 2, 2012 at 9:30am — 2 Comments

Serendipity : Yammer does the Australian Taxation Office

Well, not really, but I must admit that I had a quiet laugh to myself when I read that Microsoft had acquired Yammer.


It brought back memories of what some of my former colleagues and I within the Australian Taxation Office called the 'Yammer event'. While the event obviously had some serious implications in terms of revealing the nature of the corporate culture of the ATO…


Added by steve davies on June 26, 2012 at 9:00am — No Comments

Corporate Culture Assessment Tool

Oh no, not another survey I hear you saying.

Every time the issue of organisational culture comes up armies of consultants, along with human resource and organisational development practitioners, start mobilising. Surveys abound, all trying to get inside your head and tell you what the corporate culture should be.

And let's not forget the corporate communications people.

It's an old approach; a tried and failed approach. Why?  Because it's an…


Added by steve davies on May 21, 2012 at 3:05pm — No Comments

Australian Taxation Office - Ugly Managerial Culture Revealed

I am appalled at the level of systematic abuse Serene Teffaha has been subjected to by the Taxation Office. However, I am not surprised that this abuse has occurred. The ugly managerial practices revealed in Serene's post Silence is Consent are a reflection of the mindset and culture of corporate areas within the Taxation Office.

I believe in the value of the public…


Added by steve davies on May 15, 2012 at 8:30am — 3 Comments

Australian Public Service : The perfect storm

Full credit to the ACT Chief Minister Katy Gallagher, Canberra Liberals leader Zed Seselja and ACT Greens leader Meredith Hunter saying they did not want Canberra to bear the brunt of the government's savings measures. Canberra Times - Leaders unite for budget appeal.

However, these cutbacks are just the beginning. The Australian Public Service is caught…


Added by steve davies on May 11, 2012 at 10:59am — No Comments

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APS Bullying






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