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WLG Executive Network Call - March 2011

Creating a strong team focused on the future...


On March 22, 2011, Women Leading Government held a conference call with local government chief executives.

The topic for the March 2011 networking call was “Creating a strong team focused on the future...in these particularly tough times.” The group had a lively discussion, offering experiences and practical advice to each other.  Lori Sassoon, city manager of Villa Park, California, and Membership Chair for Women Leading Government organized the call.  ICMA Senior Advisor Jan Perkins, a former city manager, facilitated the call.

Tips from call participants included:

  • actively defend employee training initiatives
  • spend some time on team health during weekly department head meetings
  • have an off-site meeting with department heads every 3-6 months focusing on organization-wide issues
  • pay attention to positive things going on in the organization to replenish the batteries of staff and to remind ourselves of why we are in public service
  • hold employee meetings to discuss the budget in an open and frank manner
  • have short icebreakers for staff meetings to insert a bit of fun
  • send notes to employees complimenting them on something they’ve done
  • attend department events and reinforce a framework of “we all work for one organization.”

Lori’s email is: lsassoon@villapark.org.  Jan Perkins’ email is jperkins@icma.org.  

Future WLG Executive Networking Call topics include:

  • moving the organization to new compensation realities
  • reaching the public in a time of diminished newspaper reporting
  • the city manager/city attorney relationship
  • dealing with difficult council members
  • organizing your work and keeping track of council priorities

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