The yes sir, yes sir syndrome. In asking Government officials not to only nod ‘yes sir, yes sir,’ while interacting with their political bosses, Chief Minister N Biren is trying to send out the message that Government officials need to come out and convey what is in their mind to the political leaders. Anyone who has seen Government officials interacting with the political leaders will understand the point that the Chief Minister was trying to convey and Mr N Biren could not have come out with this observation on a better platform. The Chief Minister spoke out his thought on the Civil Service Day, which was observed across the country on April 21, wherein top Government officials were in attendance. In one statement, the Chief Minister has underlined that Government officials are not ‘robots’ programmed to just utter or nod one’s head while interacting with the political leaders. In other words, more is expected from them and why not ? Obviously it also remains that the Chief Minister will need to do more than just talk or issue suggestions to the officials. The ‘yes sir, yes sir’ syndrome is borne out of the long standing ‘custom’ of the officials having to fall in line with whatever the Ministers and MLAs say, without exercising their mental faculty. It is this practise which promotes cham-chagiri and this is anathema to development and progress.
Use your mental faculty, is the message of the Chief Minister. As noted earlier, the Chief Minister will need to do more than just issue instructions or give suggestions, but see how to revamp the system. Encourage independent thinking, but within the framework of one’s official boundary, encourage fresh ideas and try to address the system of “officialdom” which may not exactly go in line with the new global definition of excellence and create an atmosphere where raising questions should be encouraged. There is so much that Government officials can contribute to the functioning of a Government and this is a point which should not be lost on anyone. Running a Government can obviously be never equated with running or managing a business establishment, but some tips may be taken from how private enterprises function with excellent results. A case in point are the private schools which have always managed to produce the best brains in the land. A look at how Government schools have fared vis-a-vis the private schools should give some working examples. Government officials should try to understand the intrinsic meaning behind the observation of the Chief Minister.
Source: The Sangai Express