Keep it short, keep it simple
Combined, the agencies and institutions of our Ministry and branch of government form a large actor. MEE Corporate employs well over ten thousand employees (but you shouldn’t describe it as “a big concern” in English, though, as that would refer to a different matter altogether).
Statutory and political steering processes keep us busy at the Ministry. On the other hand, we don’t want to be like the proverbial rower too busy to start the outboard engine, or the cyclist in too much of a hurry to mount the bike he is leading. Neither do we want to be the sum of partially optimised systems. Instead, we want to think of the whole. To achieve this, we need to find the time to create a strategy.
We know that
renewal is of primary importance. Jack Welch, General Electric Corporation’s
long-serving Chairman and CEO, has gone so far as to say that if an
organisation changes slower than the outside world, the end of its existence is
in sight. Darwinian survival of the fittest holds true, even in the case of
enterprises and organisations.
The unfit fall by the wayside and their resources are freed up for more productive use. However, this automatic mechanism does not work efficiently in the case of administration. Even a Ministry may sometimes get into a rut, following old practices without noticing. In the worst-case scenario, unforeseen havoc is wrought on the surroundings.
As well as helping the Ministry to renew itself, the corporate strategy is intended to enable it to focus on the essential and operate consistently. The strategy is also a source of motivation, helping us to understand our role and clarifying the Ministry’s external image. Everyone understands when we say that ‘the Ministry is building the operating environment for Finnish labour and industry’.
In the early days of the Ministry of Employment and the Economy, there was a strategy process. In my opinion, this was fairly successful. However, ten pages of text were produced which were so compact and overworked that, in a colleague’s opinion, it was unreadable – he said ‘it really sucked’. A dramatically abridged version of this text now fits onto two pages. This is a reasonable result, as the government programme on which the text is based is 90 pages long, including 900 different procedures.
Find out more about the strategy online