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A Typology of Commitment In Local Government and the Public Ethos

International Journal of Applied Public Sector Management (ISSN: 1742-2655) Volume 1 Issue 2

Martyn Lowe

Abstract

Organisations in both the public and private sectors have been exploring ways in which employee commitment can be increased. Employers consider that greater commitment will encourage higher performance and better quality of product. Those organisations adopting Human Resource Management often adopt strategies aimed at increasing employee commitment by stating values and mission objectives which appeal to staff. These values and mission fulfil the need of employees to feel they are part of an organisation working towards objectives they understand and share.

Local Government's employed professional staff are said to have once experienced a "public sector ethos", a shared sense of mission and values focussed on service to the local community and public at large. Twenty-five years of Central Government initiatives aimed at introducing a new sense of mission and values, based on commercialism and market values, sought to replace this public service orientation. This research found, however, that the public service ethos still exists amongst professional staff, and identifies factors which help define the nature of the public service ethos.

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