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FCW : November 30, 2012
22 November 30, 2012 FCW.COM Fast-tracking a government career To make sense of all the con icting advice, FCW asked seven experts to tell us what young feds should do to get ahead --- and what they should avoid. BY CAMILLE TUUTTI You need to have mentors, you need to network, and you need to make connections with people. Lisa Blomgren Bingham Lisa Blomgren Bingham is the Keller- Runden professor of public service at Indiana University s School of Public and Environmental Affairs and a former attorney who represented government and nonpro t employers in labor and employment law. This group is going to face work in which they have to collaborate across jurisdictional boundaries. Collaboration requires a special set of skills and [requires] that they get training in negotiation, particularly interest-based negotiation or principled negotiation, which is very different from the stereotypes you have about handling the marketplace. It is not trying to beat someone out in an argument but rather trying to be creative and innovative to come up with solutions. The reason they have to do that is because we are in a period of declining resources, and you need to gure out how you can leverage resources to get more done. We may see in this [millennial] generation --- and they have been trained to expect --- more job mobility in terms of wanting to move more and needing to move more. They have to balance that with how it will look on their résumé a few years down the road. One or two of those moves are ne, but four or ve are a problem. On the other hand, I do not think these folks are going to get ahead if they stay at one agency for 20 years. [You need to nd] the strategic balance between showing that you are willing to be loyal and work hard for a respectable period of time and identifying opportunities that allow you, for example, to do a short-term assignment or do a detail assignment at another agency so you can get some experience. You need to have mentors, you need to network, and you need to make connections with people. The best managers these days are able to delegate work to up-and- coming folks [that] requires learning and acquiring skills that are in the interest of these young employees to have. The best managers are also willing to let employees go when there is an opportunity for them to move up. Finding those kinds of mentors and supervisors is a huge advantage. Career tips are like opinions: Everyone has one.
November 15, 2012