Organizations hire consultants because they often bring a fresh set of eyes to an issue, problem or opportunity. By doing so, the organization, tacitly or actively, agrees that its employees may be having difficulty seeing the forest for the trees.
Employees’ familiarity with an issue, event or process may cause them not to recognize opportunities or solutions that are staring them in the face.
If you want to see what I mean, cover your watch with your hand and describe what is on the dial. Most people cannot tell you if the watch they are wearing has Arabic or Roman numerals or any numbers at all. If you don’t wear a watch, find a clock with Roman numerals and look at the four. You just might notice that the IV on most clocks with Roman numerals is actually written as IIII. How many times have you looked at clock or watch with Roman numerals and not noticed the error?
The point I am making is when it comes to the city you live in, you may be quite capable of coming up with solutions to problems or approaches to issues the civic administration or city council have overlooked. Maybe you have thought up a better approach to pothole repair, a better way to schedule bus service or how to keep would-be artists from spray painting their tags all over public property.
Whenever you have an idea about how to make our city a better place in which to live, work or play, you have two choices: Keep it to yourself or share it with the public and our civic leaders. In the old days, this usually meant writing a letter to the editor and/or to the appropriate civic politician. But today, you have a lot more options on how to get your ideas heard and responded to.
It has been said that freedom of the press belongs to those who own the presses. Today, we all own presses: YouTube, Facebook, Twitter. We can use these channels to make our city officials aware of where you think they are doing a good job or where they could be doing things better.
Electronic communication is monitored by the city in the same way it monitors what is being said in the traditional media. If you want to make your voice heard, you now have ample ways of doing so.