PM From the Archives: Leading in an Economic Downturn

The most important archived articles to help your organization and community persevere and thrive through these economic challenges.

Aug 6, 2020 | DIGITAL PUBLICATION

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August 6, 2020
VIA ICMA-owned image

Not since the recession of 2007-2009 have local governments faced economic challenges as severe as those they have encountered in early 2020. With little warning, they have found themselves facing the “COVID-19 Recession.”

Many of the steps local governments and their state-level partners took to safeguard public health and safety by slowing the spread of the coronavirus—lockdowns and stay-at-home orders, the closure of schools and “nonessential” businesses—had direct and devastating effects on local government organizations and budgets.

Lockdowns were accompanied by a corresponding decline in shopping, dining, tourism, and other sources of tax revenue. School closures imposed an additional burden on employees with children. Many local government workers were strained and often demoralized as they adapted to new ways of doing business from remote locations and struggled to incorporate home schooling into their daily routines.

But local governments and their employees have demonstrated time and time again that they can be resilient and adaptable when faced with new challenges—and ICMA has a wealth of resources that can help. We scoured Public Management (PM) magazine to identify the most important archived articles to help your organization and community persevere and thrive through these economic challenges.

  • Learn lessons from previous recessions that affected local government.
  • Reshape your local government and build employee spirit, passion, and commitment and, ultimately, organizational capacity.
  • Gain leadership strategies to help your organization in the midst of turmoil and fear, and, in the process, demonstrate your value.
  • Develop financial strategies that will inspire pride, loyalty, and enthusiasm throughout the organization so that staff and employees are inspired to work together to make the organization financially sustainable.

As author Edward Everett says in closing his article: “Be a Leader – Don’t Be Afraid - Slay this Dragon!”

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