Melissa Jezior, CEO at Eagle Hill Consulting and Scott Caldwell, President of WB Dynamics, discuss acquisition innovation in the federal government, and how agencies can foster ideas in their offices.
Acquisition innovation has been the latest trend in government management, but for how much longer? Is the phrase just a buzzword, or has there been a revolution in new ideas presented at federal agencies? According to Melissa Jezior, CEO at Eagle Hill Consulting, it’s the latter. “We recently commissioned some research where we asked ‘how innovative is the government?’ What we found is that we’ve got a really amazing workforce in the federal government. They are highly educated, highly motivated and they have ideas.” Jezior told Government Matters. “We found 58 percent of federal employees are sharing their ideas at the lunch room table. I think it is about how we figure out how to get it out of the lunch room, and into everyday life and trying to improve what we are trying to accomplish.” Scott Caldwell, President of WB Dynamics, says that to improve innovation, the government needs to improve communication. “A lot of times we see them acting as the trusted advisor at the top of the mountain. They really do understand. But as it trickles down… it gets lost in the bureaucracy from time to time,” Caldwell said. “If you take it down to the office level, I think that could be a great start. One example that is specific to acquisition is the kickoff meeting. You’ve won your first big contract or your hundredth, you are in the kickoff meeting, don’t make it to ridged and so formal, let’s really lay it on the table about our objectives and our goals.”