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Election is Concluded. We Pray that this Result Leads to Greater Solidarity, Stability and Prosperity in Our Beloved Pakistan.
On a totally non-partisan note, there is a ton of work ahead for the newly elected representatives.
The known facts are here.
- Government machinery is run by the bureaucracy, whatever the government. There was a time when bureaucracy lived in their own world. They did not bother with the government. However, thanks to successive political governments, bureaucracy is now seriously politically divided. From plain bias to real alignment, all shades are now available. The implication is that every new government engages in wholesale transfers and postings as the first step. This may be a necessary evil and shall surely be done. It does lead to management gaps and inefficiencies.
- Since Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and until Imran Khan, no one raised the slogan of CHANGE. ZAB had a large team of qualified people and had a huge go at it. That it didn’t work out well was due to other reasons. Imran Khan does not appear to have a strong team to choose from. With strong opposition and other hostile factors, it would be a management feat to pull off change. Experienced managers are urgently required.
- After 18th amendment, federal government did lose some of its powers. Election results do not show landslide majority for anyone. For every legislation, new or change, it would be uphill task to get it through both houses. Chief Whips used to keep the party members in line and rallied them for party causes. Lately however, the assembly members seem to have a free for all kind of life. They attend or skip sessions at will. They do not bother to even read through the documents presented to them for debate and voting. This is going to be another management challenge to instill seriousness in the newly elected members.
- Leadership and Management are inherently different; and in some ways mutually exclusive also. Leaders think big and give vision and lead towards that vision. Managers do the mundane jobs like organizing, running daily affairs, managing expenses and keeping things in order. Prime Minister is supposed to be Chief Executive which is a mix of management and leadership. Practically, the PM is mostly in the leadership mode. Imran Khan is much more of a leader than manager. He cannot change, he should not change. But he must have a strong management team to run the government affairs. This is going to be another big management challenge. Nawaz Sharif was the same. Benazir was different. She was a strong leader but she learnt and exercised management also. During her tenure as Prime Minister, she asked Pakistan Institute of Management (PIM) to conduct management training workshop for her cabinet ministers. And she made it a point to make herself also available for attending the workshop. Such was her commitment to doing things.
- The institutions of state are in disarray. Legislature, Executive, Judiciary and the fourth pillar, Media, all included. These have been undermined systematically by successive regimes. It is a daunting task to reform the state institutions. Any such effort will be met with resistance which will be strong and sustained. It is going to be rough anyway. Taking them up or leave them as they are, will be equally bad.
This is not an exhaustive list of management challenges awaiting the new government. Many more points may be added.
It is our responsibility as a nation to stand together, protect our country and our rights, and usher our beloved country into the era of achievement, growth and prosperity.