November 1, 2013
VILSECK, Germany -- It's not common, especially amid the current fiscal situation, for employees to generate more work for themselves.
But that's exactly what local national employees Hans Dumbach, Ulli Pfosch and Marga Boese did recently.
The trio planned, coordinated and administered two Local National Workforce Transformation briefings for more than 60 LN employees at Tower Barracks and Rose Barracks, Oct. 30-31.
The primary goal of the briefings was to ensure fellow LNs have the opportunity to speak up and contribute to making the garrison a better place to work, and to equip leaders with the right tools to manage their workforce.
"We realized that the LN workforce needs to hear from fellow LNs where we stand on transformation, what we can do to cope with the current situation, and how our role working for the U.S. Army will change in the future," said Dumbach, a Workforce Development specialist at U.S. Army Garrison Bavaria's Directorate of Human Resources.
As the Directorate of Public Works employs a majority of local nationals at the garrison, Dumbach said it made sense to brief DPW supervisors first, and have them push the information out to their employees.
The plan is to hold briefings for supervisors for the rest of the garrison's directorates throughout November and December.
Kathy Aydt, deputy garrison commander, USAG Bavaria, opened the Oct. 31 session at the Multipurpose Room on Rose Barracks.
"We have to figure out how we can do less, better, but we have to do that with a deliberate process, and that's where you all come in," Aydt said to the 20 supervisors in the audience.
She explained the long-term transformation plan for enduring garrisons in Europe, along with the realities associated with working in a fiscally constrained environment.
"The leaders realize we have set expectations up here, but our purse strings are down here," she said, motioning in the air to depict the disparity.
Following her briefing, Aydt fielded questions from the audience. Several of the supervisors' questions centered on ways to communicate better with customers about the services DPW provides.
"We have to establish what we do in policy so that we can shape (customers') expectations," Aydt said.
After the question-and-answer session, Dumbach, along with Pfosch and Boese, who serve as the chief of manpower, USAG Bavaria's DHR, and management-employee relations specialist at Grafenwoehr's Civilian Personnel Advisory Center, respectively, briefed supervisors on topics such as motivation, team development, work assignment, conflict management and resiliency.
The next session will be held in Hohenfels, Nov. 4, with another session planned for the Garmisch community in the near future.
"It's important that we have a dialogue with you and give you the tools to get through challenges that lie ahead," Aydt said.