Scan the Saturday job advertisements for government agencies and you find an increasing number are claiming they offer the opportunity to ‘make a difference’.
- Crimtrac asks ‘Do you want to make a difference?’
- Professional Services Review says ‘Make a big difference in a small agency …’
- Bureau of Meterology tells us ‘This project will shape Australia’s future. Think what it could do for your career’.
- Department of Human Services asks ‘Want to make a difference?’
Enticing headlines. But what do they mean? How will I make a difference if I work for these organisations?
To understand making a difference we need specifics. Not generalities, such as “outstanding opportunity to experience a wide range of challenging, but rewarding work experiences …”
To understand how I will make a difference I need to know the answers to these questions:
- What will change as a result of what I do?
- Who will be directly affected by this change?
- Who will be indirectly affected by this change?
- How will I know?
- How will I bring about this change?
- Why is this change important?
- Will the change affect the social, physical, economic, emotional, spiritual environmental position of some one, some group, some region, sector or Australia?
- Will I really be able to contribute my ideas and expertise?
- How long will it take to see a difference?
- Who else will help me make a difference?
Until applicants are provided with this information, the enticement will ring hollow.