Final TMO Report

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TMO REVISITED: AN EVALUATION REPORT

 

&

BUILDING BLOCKS TO MEET

 

21ST CENTURY

 

CHALLENGES

 

 

 

TMO EVALUATION REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

October 1, 1998

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Team Members:

 

 

 

 

Nattie Silva WO Team Leader

 

Sunny Hemphill R1 Lead Evaluator

 

Suraj Ahuja R5 Evaluator

 

Dorothy Stennis R6 Evaluator

 

Jenny Stephenson R1 Evaluator

 

Amahra Hicks R5 Team Member

 

Joan McDevitt NE Sta. Team Member

 

Curt Peterson R4 Team Member

 

David Bolsover R4 Editor

 

Jan Oliver R1 Typist

 

Jackie Twiss WO Designer, Exec.Summary

 

 

 


 

 

Table of Contents

 

 

 

I. Introduction 4

 

II. Purpose 4

 

III. Situation Statement (Background and Context) 4

 

IV. Evaluation Findings 13

 

V. Critical Assumptions and Recommendations 16

 

VI. Materials Evaluated 19

 

A. Toward a Multicultural Organization Taskforce Reports 19

 

B. USDA Civil Rights Action Team (CRAT) Report 46

 

C. TMO/CRAT Crosswalk 48

 

VII. Bibliography 50

 

VIII. Definitions 52

 

IX. Abbreviations 52

 

X. Appendices 54

 

CRAT Recommendations Summary 54

 

1997 Civil Rights Program Assessment Analysis 66

 

 


 

I. INTRODUCTION

 

 

Toward a Multicutural Organization (TMO) is a strategic plan to prepare the Forest Service to meet 21st Century challenges. It is a dynamic framework for change with goals and strategies for becoming a multicultural organization and managing a diverse workforce. It is designed to emphasize people instead of numbers and to transform the Forest Service into an "employer of choice." Recommended changes are aimed at creating a work environment where everyone is respected and accepted, developing leaders who value differences in the workforce, and fulfilling the Agency mission of "Caring for the Land and Serving People." Agency changes are designed to meet challenges reflected in society as a result of demographic shifts that have altered American populations and expectations.

 

 

II. PURPOSE

 

This evaluation was conducted to assess the usefulness of Toward a Multicultural Organization in achieving agency goals of becoming a multicultural organization.

 

 

III. SITUATION STATEMENT - CONTEXT / BACKGROUND

 

Legislative Direction

 

As early as 1883, the Civil Service Act had prohibited discrimination based on "non-merit" factors in the Federal Government, but that legislation did not eliminate discrimination based on race, color, or gender. Employment decisions were still often based on these factors. In the early 1960's, in the wake of marches and demonstrations brought about by the failure to provide citizen rights equally to all Americans, the President and Congress took up the issue of discrimination based on race and gender.

 

The passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibited discrimination in private employment. Executive Order 11246 in 1964 extended non-discrimination in employment based on race, color, religion, sex or national origin to Federal employment and to contractors of Federal business. Executive Order 11478 in 1969 established affirmative action authorities and guidelines requiring Federal agencies to allocate resources to administer programs.

 

The National Enviromental Policy Act of 1969 called for the integrated use of social sciences in assessing impacts of resource activities on the human environment. This legislation serves as the basis for considering civil rights impacts of decisions and policies. The Civil Service ^Reform Act of 1970 set goals for the Federal workforce to mirror the population in representation of women and minorities at all grades and series.

 

Finally, the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Act of 1972 applied EEO provisions of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to the Federal government and required the preparation and implementation of Affirmative Action Plans. The Federal Women's Program had been created in 1967, the Hispanic Employment program (formerly the Sixteen Point or Spanish -Speaking Program) in 1971, and the Forest Service Native American program shortly thereafter.

 

USDA Climate and Forest Service Response

 

The Forest Service Chief established the Service-wide Civil Rights Committee (SCRC) in 1978, and as early as 1980, USDA Secretary Bergland released a booklet called People Serving People. The foreword says, "[success] requires the best talents and services of men and women from all segments of our society. We particularly need the abilities of women and minorities." The booklet featured every USDA Agency, listing the types of jobs available, and showing photos of minorities and women doing those jobs. A vision of the future workforce was being presented.

 

By 1986, references to Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO), Civil Rights (CR) and workforce diversity were appearing in policy statements at USDA. Secretary Lyng stressed in his policy statement as a new cabinet member that "avoidance of discrimination must be a daily, regular, constant practice" so that when the "slightest hint of discrimination shows up, it is quickly spotted and eliminated." He cautioned his assistants and Agency heads not to "take this matter lightly." Failure would be taken as a grievous weakness in management which no other accomplishments could offset.

 

The Forest Service responded to this strong policy with a brochure entitled Workforce Diversity 1995--Strength through Diversity. Chief Robertson quoted the agency vision statement as saying, "We will have a workforce that better reflects the nation's diversity," and urged all employees to incorporate affirmative action into workforce management and planning. Dated December, 1987, the pamphlet reviewed Forest Service progress in integrating the workforce over a ten- year period. In 1976, the Forest Service permanent workforce consisted of 8% minorities and 20% women. By 1986, those figures had changed to 12% and 31% respectively, a nearly 50% improvement in representation. (By 1996, the target year set by Chief Robertson, only slight improvement had been made. Minorities were at 16%, and women were at 33% of permanent workforce totals.) Minorities and women had also begun to move into non-traditional roles and leadership positions in the Agency. Region Five had settled a class-action suit in 1973 and was under the legal mandate of the Consent Decree, which required an immediate improvement in the representation of women at all levels.

 

The agency also made considerable efforts to diversify upper levels of management, as exemplified by the following appointments:

 

African American male Director of Human Resource Programs in 1977

African American male Director of Civil Rights 1979

First female District Ranger in 1979

First American Indian Forest Supervisor R9 in 1979

American Indian Forest Supervisor R3 in 1982

First Hispanic female Deputy Regional Forester in 1982

First Afro-American District Ranger in 1984

First Hispanic Regional Forester in 1984.

First female Forest Supervisor in 1985

First female Associate Deputy Chief in 1989.

First African American Deputy Regional Forester in 1990

Asian-American female Deputy Regional Forester in 1990

First female Station Director in 1991

First African American Station Director in 1992

First female Regional Forester in 1992

Two female Deputy Regional Foresters in 1992

First female Deputy Chief in 1993

First African American Regional Forester in 1994

First minority Associate Deputy Chief in 1994

First Hispanic Station Director in 1996

First Minority Deputy Chief (Research) in 1997

First Asian Station Director in 1997

First Indian Regional Forester in 1997

 

The Forest Service Organizational Directory by July, 1983 was an indicator of upward mobility for women and minorities, especially at headquarters. Parity with the Civilian Labor Force was underway, but the agency was still at the "token" stage.

 

In December 1989, Chief Robertson signed the new Forest Service Management Philosophy, which envisioned a new Agency culture that was customer driven and valued for its innovation, creativity, risk tolerance, and maximized potential.

 

 

In May 1990, Secretary Yeutter introduced a comprehensive plan called Framework for Change: Workforce Diversity and Delivery of Programs for building a diverse workforce at USDA and ensuring fairness in delivery of programs. The pamphlet, distributed to all USDA employees, demonstrated a commitment and accountability for equal opportunity and civil rights. It introduced a plan for diversifying the USDA workforce over a ten year period. This plan focused on:

overcoming under-representation in entry, middle, and senior levels, and Senior Executive Service (SES) levels for minorities, women, and persons with disabilities;

valuing cultural diversity and providing for advancement within the workforce; and

achieving fairness in program delivery.

 

Key to achieving success was the newly-required accountability from all employees through a mandatory, critical element in Equal Opportunity/Civil Rights (EO/CR).

 

The Building on the Framework for Change booklet of December 1990 highlighted accomplishments in program delivery, recruitment, valuing diversity, and involving youth in achieving the goals of the Framework for Change Plan.

 

Chief Robertson responded with two initiatives. In November, 1990, the Forest Service held its first National Diversity Conference, which assembled the most diverse audience ever to attend an Agency event. The theme, "All Together Now," expressed the spirit and momentum created by the conference. The conference was organized in a learning, understanding, embracing sequence with objectives of building support and "staying power" behind workforce diversity. Even people with doubts came away overwhelmed by the passion and integrity of the conference participants.

 

1991 was the first year that data about employees with reported impairments and targeted disabilities was included in the FS Workforce Data Book 1990-1991. Employees with reported impairments were 5.23%, and employees with targeted disabilities were .89% of the permanent workforce. By 1996, employees with reported impairments were 7.86%; and employees with targeted disabilities were 1.30% of permanent employees and declining with downsizing.

 

The Creation of TMO

 

The Chief's second initiative was the appointment of the Taskforce on Workforce Diversity and the introduction of the report, Towards a Multicultural Organization (TMO), in March, 1991, which identified eleven goals for diversification of the Forest Service workforce:

 

1. Elevate leadership devoted to human resources and multiculturalism.

2. Recruit and retain a multicultural workforce.

3. Develop an innovative, creative, people-oriented work environment.

4. Achieve community acceptance of a diverse workforce.

5. Value, understand, and manage diversity.

6. Establish managerial and supervisory support.

7. Help employees balance career and personal needs.

8. Achieve a national training and development program.

9. Improve accountability for achieving results.

10. Set numerical objectives for achieving diversity by 1995.

11. Recognize and appreciate multicultural accomplishments.

 

The report affirmed the need to change the Forest Service workforce to "mirror American society" in order to effectively care for the land and serve the people.

 

The four major elements in the strategy for change were to

become a multicultural organization,

become more participatory in leadership and supervision,

establish a sense of urgency about the business advantage of diversity, and

adopt a marketing approach that considers people's needs and desires.

 

Introduction of this bold concept involved assemblies of all headquarters employees, who attended one-day workshops on understanding the TMO effort. After the workshops, all units held meetings to develop their implementation plans and to determine how each person could contribute to this effort. Regional efforts to introduce TMO varied from distributing the booklet with a supportive cover letter to creating a complex Regional Implementation Plan.

 

The National Forest Service Implementation Plan for TMO of February, 1992, grouped the eleven goals into six "National Focus Areas" which linked the goals with strategies from the TMO for logical and relevant implementation. The Deputy Chief for Administration was made responsible for tracking, assessing, and evaluating the progress in the six focus areas. Task forces were assembled, and meetings were held to further develop and clarify the six focus areas.

 

Forest Service Regions also created marketing tools that reinforced the multicultural vision.

In 1989, Region One developed a "Valuing Diversity" training program, required of all employees, that emphasized understanding demographic changes and appreciating differences. That effort has now been through three phases of training, which include units on specific diversity groups and tools for enhanced performance in a diversified workforce. All supervisors and managers were also assigned a critical Civil Rights performance element. Region Two implemented a mandatory EEO/CR element for its leaders, supervisors, and managers. Region Three developed strong partnerships with Employee Resource Groups. Region Four was commended for developing an Implementation Plan for TMO actions, including flexiplace policies and involvement with local youth in outreach activities. Regions Four and Five both created posters that portrayed multicultural employees and customers.

 

Region Five and the Pacific Southwest Station developed a multi-level program to work with public school students called Commencement 2000. Region Six developed a pool of diverse candidates to consider when hiring and promotion opportunities arose. In 1990, Region Eight published a brochure called Pathways to Opportunity which featured ideas for removing obstacles, raising questions, and initiating change. Region Nine created a book entitled Shaping a New Culture which highlighted the cultural evolution of the Eastern Region from hierarchical, functional and process-oriented, to empowered, integrated and results-oriented. This "Can do!" strategy outlined change, starting with the Eliminating Red Tape Pilot in 1985, and ending with Strategic Issues Management, RO Realignment, and Quality Leadership in 1991. Region Ten's Multicultural Organization Strategic Plan (MOSP) was signed by all managers in 1991. Research Stations developed Multicultural Diversity Implementation Plans involving training, mentoring, flexiplace, student environmental education experiences, use of student initiatives, exit interviews, and diversity conferences.

 

Concurrently, the Regional Foresters and Station Directors were developing the Mission, Vision and Guiding Principles, which were released in early 1993. These documents borrowed wording from TMO and the Government Performance Results Act (GPRA), especially in the second paragraph of the Vision Statement. The Guiding Principles stated plainly that a multicultural organization is "essential to our success." A Policy Group of upper managers also monitored to assure congruence between the Forest Service Mission, Vision, Guiding Principles and overall objectives of TMO.

 

Over a period of two years, task forces released five reports, each linked to one of the six National Focus Areas. Each report was submitted to the National Leadership Team for approval and implementation. Forest Service employees were aware of the TMO and its goal of changing the culture of the Forest Service. As the first task force reports were released, excitement was building and the expectations of employees were high.

 

TMO's Areas of Focus

 

1. Training and Development

Seven "Investment in People" workgroups were formed to make assessments and develop recommendations, with an "Umbrella Team" coordinating the teams' efforts. Their topics were:

 

a. Working within a multicultural society / organization

b. Management and supervisory competency / development

c. Career counseling and succession planning

d. Technical training competency levels and skills

d. Orientation / integration-- creating a new employees' video

e. Training / education automation

f. Training delivery systems--created a new CDI training on customer service

 

Members of teams a. through c. (above), along with the Umbrella Team, met in November, 1993 to finalize the "linkage" of the three teams into one report: Preparing Employees and Supervisors for a Multicultural Organization. A proposal for implementation was sent to the Regional Foresters and Station Directors (RF&D) in April, 1994.

 

2. Work Environment

The Continuously Improving Our Work Environment Report was released in September, 1993. The Continuous Improvement Process (CIP) was assigned to the Washington Office (WO) Civil Rights Team to implement in Fiscal Year 1995. The CIP survey tool was designed to measure evolutionary change in Forest Service culture and workforce. A Pilot test of the CIP Survey Tool took place in September, 1994, and a marketing and introductory brochure, We'd Like to Interest You in a Better Job, was distributed in February, 1996. All employees received the survey in the fourth quarter of Fiscal Year 1996, with feedback meetings scheduled in early Fiscal Year 1997. Each unit met to discuss needs and strengths as indicated by its survey results. The second survey, a revised tool, was conducted in mid-1997 with participation rates that averaged 56% service wide. Feelings about workforce diversity measured 66% favorable. Follow-up meetings at most units identified priorities, and small teams made resolution plans.

 

3. Outreach and Recruitment

The Outreach & Recruitment: A Servicewide, Strategic Plan was the first task force report, finalized in May, 1993.

 

4. Work and Family

The Balancing Career and Personal Needs (BC&PN) final report was issued in March, 1995.

A video conference on BC&PN took place in May, 1994 . Copies are available at each Forest.

 

5. Standards for Accountability

The Individual and Organizational Accountability in the Forest Service report was released in February, 1994. Another effort related to this focus area was the Top Quality Management (TQM) training, along with Agency participation in the TQM Institute. In 1997, the generic CR element and standards for the Senior Executive Service (SES) were approved for optional use. Mandatory use started in Fiscal Year 1998. Generic standards for other top leaders were assigned in early 1998.

 

6. Recognition

Chief's Recognition Awards - Recognition was focused on teamwork, instead of individual performance. Award amounts allowable for individuals and teams changed to reflect the emphasis on team achievement.

 

TMO and Ongoing Problems

 

In the three to four years between the initial TMO booklet and the time the final reports of the focus area taskforces appeared, attention to and promotion of the TMO effort dwindled. Some perceived TMO as a product of Chief Robertson. A new chief was at the helm, and issues in natural resource management overshadowed efforts to make a change in the Forest Service workforce and culture. Ecosystem management had come to the fore, and with it a preoccupation with resource issues. Affirmative action concepts were being challenged in the Congress. There was a perception that the public had wearied of trying to overcome the effects of past discrimination.

 

Region Five was already negotiating the settlement of a class-action suit with Hispanics and was implementing the Consent Decree with women. The Regional Forester published a bold, new policy embracing current non- discrimination policy at USDA. This eleven- point policy was on the cutting edge of Forest Service thinking and brought out a conservative backlash. The Agency, in its conservatism, had not implemented affirmative action when other federal agencies were doing so; now it was playing catch-up. Meanwhile, the U.S. Supreme Court, in Adarand vs. Pena, held that Federal affirmative action programs were subject to narrow tailoring and strict scrutiny when their constitutionality is challenged in court.

 

At USDA, civil rights issues kept reappearing. Stimulated by a backlog of over 700 formal EEO complaints, Secretary Espy issued a strong EEO/CR policy statement in April, 1993 reiterating his "commitment to make USDA a place where equal opportunity for all Americans is assured and where promoting civil rights is essential to employee and managerial success." New formal EEO complaints were averaging 55 per month, double that of the previous years. Costs averaged $10,000 per complaint plus associated stress, frustration, and wasted human resources.

 

After interaction with employees, Secretary Espy appointed the six member USDA Employee Focus Group on EEO and CR in May of 1993 to make suggestions and recommendations. By July, they had produced a report that outlined the potential issues and problems, along with twelve recommendations for improving the climate for employees at USDA. Recommendations listed were:

 

1. Create a less burdensome and time- consuming complaint process through a Dispute Resolution Board and centralized counselling services. If Agency response is untimely, allow the complainant to prevail.

 

2. Use disciplinary and administrative actions to hold offending parties accountable.

 

3. Review the confidentiality issues and publicize terms of settlements as permitted to deter further occurrences.

 

4. Eliminate reprisal and resistance in the work culture. Encourage open participation by employees. Create an upward communication system to which management is responsive, and continue to use focus groups to monitor results and identify new issues.

 

5. Routinely conduct Personnel Management evaluations of each agency to assure fairness and equity in processes and practices.

 

6. Issue requirements for training all supervisory and managerial personnel in EO/CR concepts.

 

7. Compile and publicize programs for employee assistance and dispute resolution.

 

8. Create an "Office of Scientific Integrity" to address scientific dishonesty and fraudulent use of "science" to influence decisions and policies. Inform and guide employees on EO/CR rights and responsibilities.

 

9. Report reliable employment and complaint statistics. Analyze and report trends from opinion surveys.

 

10. Review SES candidate development processes for effectiveness in training managers for the future. Publicize findings and actions.

 

11. Correct the abuse of awards by assuring merit in accomplishments and appropriate use of options for appreciation / recognition.

 

12. Drop the EEO/CR performance element for non-supervisory personnel since it was not measurable and was a source of dissatisfaction and suspicion.

 

In November of 1994, USDA Secretary Espy appointed a majority of the sub-cabinet members to a Blue Ribbon Taskforce on Equal Opportunity and Diversity to emphasize that civil rights was a managerial concern of the whole Department, rather than just a civil rights staff issue. With input from the USDA Civil Rights Leadership Council, the Blue Ribbon Taskforce submitted its report to Secretary Glickman in May, 1996. The CR Leadership Council had identified four issues of substantial impact:

 

accountability,

underrepresentation / underutilization,

complaints management, and

resources and structure of CR organization.

 

The Council highly recommended two strategies for successfully impacting the four issues.

1.) Education and training in civil rights and diversity management would need to be uniform and comprehensive, and

2.) the communication of new values and a new vision would need to be consistent and powerful.

 

On May 13, 1996 the Coalition of Minority Employees at USDA held a press conference to call National attention to the human and public cost of widespread discrimination at USDA. On May 14, USDA hosted a Civil Rights Forum which featured panel discussions and questions and answer periods involving field personnel via satellite downlink. Videotapes of all discussions and presentations were made available to all USDA employees. Breakout sessions covered issues such as making CR a part of strategic plans, enhancing minority and women owned business participation, resolving complaints through Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), reaching out in program delivery, downsizing and reorganizing, etc.

 

In July, 1996 a USDA summary report on CR described implementations related to issues and recommendations. It reported actions taken at the Secretary's level and reports from the mission areas. The Forest Service reported the TMO, including the CIP, as a significant effort as well as the Early Intervention Program ( EIP), diversity training, use of Civil Rights Impact Analyses (CRIA), and partnerships with higher educational institutions.

 

Implementation of USDA recommendations began to affect Forest Service field units in October 1996, when a full scale report of CR resources was requested from all agencies, including field units. By December 1996, a full assessment of the accomplishments and functions of CR programs at all field units was underway. Assessment of TMO efforts was part of each unit's full CR Assessment. Themes in common in the CR Assessments at Forest Service were all units participating in the Continuing Improvement Process surveys and discussions and EEO/CR standards for all managers and supervisors; however, the relationship between these two efforts and Multicultural Organization plans was not always clear.

 

CRAT Involvement

 

In December of 1996, after a demonstration by black farmers at the White House, Secretary Glickman chartered a team of USDA leaders to examine problems and recommend change. Eleven listening sessions were held nationwide. In February of 1997 the USDA Civil Rights Action Team (CRAT) submitted a report to Secretary Glickman outlining its findings and 92 recommendations. Improvement was started immediately. Thirty-three Civil Rights Implementation Teams (CRIT) were appointed to develop action plans and to design changes. The huge backlog of equal opportunity complaints was assigned to special teams for resolution.

 

The Forest Service Chief visited several field locations in July 1997 with his "New Directions, New Opportunities" message, emphasizing commitment to civil rights and increasing the priority of fixing Agency problems.

 

An interim progress report was published in September 1997, and a one-year celebration of successes called "Reach for the Gold" was broadcast in March 1998 . Each USDA employee received a letter from the Secretary in his/her pay statement, emphasizing the one-year report and accomplishments made in civil rights. In May, 1998, the one year report was distributed to each USDA employee.

 

 

 

IV. EVALUATION FINDINGS

 

Strengths

 

Top leadership demonstrated its support for TMO through the investment in time and effort in the TMO report itself, the Implementation Plan, and the taskforce reports on the six national focus areas. The latter were products of twelve groups that invested many hours of work holding meetings, doing research, and writing the reports. Top managers and executives were personally involved in tracking, evaluating, and bringing results into line with the new Mission, Vision, and Guiding Principles.

 

TMO had excellent ideas and intentions for preparing the Agency for the 21st century. It focused on corporate training efficiencies, improving customer service, greater equity in the workplace, a participatory model for supervision and leadership, and a clear call for cultural change within the Agency.

 

It included all Forest Service employees. A human resource agenda was put on the national and regional strategic frameworks. It focused on outreach and recruitment efforts for minorities, women, and people with disabilities, groups which historically had not participated or were under-represented in Agency programs and benefits. Attention was also given to all employees' needs with programs such as flextime, flexiplace, childcare centers and parenting rooms.

 

Within TMO were recommendations of behavioral change for the Agency. The following groups were established or drawn into a new relationship with the Forest Service: African American Strategy Group (AASG), American Indian Council (AIC), Asian Pacific American Employees' Association (APAEA), Forest Service Hispanic Employees' Association (FSHEA), and Pathfinders, an association of persons with disabilities. These groups have charters, budgets, and programs of work to assist the agency in such areas as outreach, recruitment, and mentoring. Mentoring programs were established, including development of community support for new employees. The Continuous Improvement Process (CIP) was introduced, which sought employee input about the working environment. Partnerships with community leaders helped create grass roots communication and broaden Agency support.

 

The recommendations allowed for choices in implementation and a variety of perspectives. The CIP, for example, was a process that was directed and put into action at the unit level, allowing each unit to choose its own strategies and contributions.

 

Weaknesses

 

Policies and authorities for multicultural goals are not in the Forest Service Handbooks and Forest Service Manuals (FSH-FSM). Diversity management lacks routine motivation and accountability tools because it includes nurturing, caring for, and supporting people. In a strict sense, some diversified workforce strategies fall outside the scope of civil rights responsibilities. Enforcement and accountability, therefore, lack conventional processes needed to implement the broad range of organizational and behavioral changes which TMO envisioned.

 

Social and cultural changes are unsettling processes; they never happen smoothly and without problems. The Forest Service, steeped in the traditions of past times, is having difficulty changing. The image of a District Ranger ruling over the vast wilderness and range on horseback or pickup truck is still ingrained in the Agency psyche. Leaders enjoy a decentralized approach to management of resources which supports a strong sense of local destiny. Systems for helping traditional employees adjust to the changes and become comfortable were not put in place along with the goals for change. Also, the Agency did not anticipate the number of EEO complaints. Its attitude was what it had been in the past-- "Just do it."

 

Without leadership's real support at every level, no co-ordinated effort was made to track accomplishments or to hold each field unit accountable. The mobility of Forest Service line officers works against accountability for change at the grass roots level. Most district employees know they can outlast their leaders and feel that they actually run the unit. Resistance to change can, therefore, become entrenched. Leadership turnover has also had its effect, as reduced budgets and downsizing have accelerated retirements and thinned the ranks of TMO's supporters while bringing in new leaders who felt no ownership for the TMO initiative. Two new chiefs have come to the Agency helm since TMO's inception.

 

A key element to the success of building diversity in the workforce is a career and succession plan that promotes continued support for desired changes. Defined career ladders and experiences for potential agency leaders do not exist in the formal processes. Informal mentoring and showcase experiences have been the path towards leadership but are easily disrupted by politically motivated appointments. Bringing in female and minority workers at entry levels with a training plan leading to promotion within the organization was not done years ago. Now, the Agency is hard pressed to show results in diversification of upper levels.

 

Processes intended to create change were superimposed on existing systems. Teams were emphasized over individual efforts, but awards and promotions were still tied to individual accomplishments. Leaders who were historically directive in style were expected to adopt a consultative and collaborative approach without much training or transition.

 

The TMO process also lacked monitoring and accountability. Personnel turnover, new priorities in natural resources, and downsizing all interrupted the progress and attention to multicultural goals. Accountability processes were being revised and strengthened but had not been applied to workforce diversity goals. No penalties or disadvantages accrued as a result of non-support or non-accomplishment; no consequences were defined or invoked.

 

Negative Impacts on TMO

 

Budgetary developments since TMO's inception have taken their toll. Downsizing of the Agency and reduced budgets not only made less funds available for TMO's implementation, but also created confusion and demoralization which sapped energy and diverted attention away from efforts at increasing diversity. In this setting it is easy to understand how employees and managers could view TMO as just another burdensome requirement, or worse. Equal opportunity for minorities, women, and people with disabilities was perceived as a threat to the career growth of members of the traditional workforce. Downsizing also eliminated 95% of external hiring, one of the best methods for changing the composition of the workforce.

 

Changes in the social and political climate also had their effect. Some States eliminated preferences in business and education. The U. S. Supreme Court, in the Adarand vs. Pena case, held that federal affirmative action programs using racial and ethnic criteria as a basis for decision making must serve a "compelling governmental interest" and be "subject to strict scrutiny" by the courts. Bills introduced in every Congress proposed to eliminate preference hiring within the Forest Service. White males perceived themselves at a loss of advantage. The term "reverse discrimination" came into use to describe what white males felt, who had not perceived themselves within a "protected class."

 

Many Forest Service employees viewed their mission as "Caring for the Land." In recent years, focus has been brought to the second half of the mission, "Serving People." However, as natural resource management practices were challenged and factions increased, workforce diversity took a lesser priority in the competition for attention and resources.

 

 

 

V. CRITICAL ASSUMPTION AND RECOMMENDATIONS

 

Before Recommendations can be developed, inevitabilities and assumptions must be openly considered.

 

The inevitabilities that impact our multicultural organization goals are anchored on changing American demographics from largely European growth to greater numbers of immigrants from South American and Asian countries. Women, minorities, and persons with disabilities are also more prominently involved in business and government. These changes are influencing both our employee candidate pools and public participation responses.

 

American demographic shifts will continue to change what citizens want or expect as employees or customers of government agencies. Public demand influences Agency priorities, products, and effectiveness. Demographics of candidate pools influence Agency staffing patterns.

 

As the workforce ages, agencies face the consequences of skills gaps produced by retirement of experienced and knowledgeable employees. The Forest Service is already experiencing severe gaps in skills and still has a huge segment of its workforce nearing retirement. In 1997, the Forest Service workforce more than doubled the civilian labor force in percentage of 45-54 year old workers. The Agency had not fully transitioned to a new, modern leadership and participation style prior to losing much knowledge and experience. Present lack of expertise and accuracy is lowering Agency credibility.

 

 

Two assumptions framed the recommendations made by the TMO evaluation team:

 

The Forest Service wants to become a multicultural organization to survive and gain a competitive advantage in serving all segments of American society.

 

The Forest Service wants to change incrementally by adding building blocks to a strong foundation.

 

Assuming real Agency intentions to make a change, the evaluation team offers the following recommendations:

 

1. Charter a Board of Directors to provide overarching authority to implement TMO. TMO goals and accomplishments stall when responsible individuals retire or take new positions. A Board of Directors would assure that goals are integrated into the programs of work for all deputy areas. Support and interest would be constant.

 

2. Revisit TMO vision to assess its applicability during painful times associated with organizational change, downsizing, and budget cuts. Becoming an employer of choice while reducing positions and external hiring opportunities may be incompatible goals. The FS vision for a multicultural and diverse organization where employees are respected, accepted, and appreciated may, at times, also seem at odds with current downsizing actions and implications. The relationship between becoming a multicultural workforce and accomplishing the Forest Service mission must be clearly defined and explained. Agency as well as individual benefits must be fully understood.

 

3. Develop a coherent strategy to mitigate pain associated with organizational change.

Changes in leadership style, work environment, and organizational culture produce confusion and tension among employees. Stress and anticipation of change interfere with productivity and reduce support for new ways. Some successful tactics for enhancing trust and faith in the Agency's leadership and processes must be planned and implemented before a caring and nurturing work environment will emerge.

 

4. Link TMO to the Government Performance Results Act (GPRA), the Chief's Natural Resource Agenda, USDA's Civil Rights Action Team (CRAT) recommendations, and the Affirmative Employment and Recruitment Process (AERP). The more TMO goals are integrated with land management work and new planning frameworks, the more these goals will become important to individual leaders and employees. Employees are more supportive when they understand the relationship of a new goal to what they are already planning to accomplish. Identifying the relationship of TMO to other priorities and advantages will keep TMO in the forefront and associated with ongoing efforts, rather than being perceived as a nice extra or a dead balloon. Some methods to consider are:

 

Systematically evaluate outcomes against benchmarks. Use the SCRC.

Monitor and hold every level accountable for results, not just efforts.

Determine measurable performance expectations and define consequences

of target progress or regress.

Analyze cost benefits of all strategies. Get the most for the money.

 

5. Develop measurable outcomes to report TMO accomplishments through GPRA, AERP, and CRAT. Success pathways that are clearly defined encourage participation. It is always easier to get results if success measures are well defined. Recognition and accountability keep efforts aimed at achievement. Routine reporting creates opportunities to celebrate success and builds enthusiasm in marginal performers.

 

6. Include TMO processes in Manual and Handbook direction. Most FS employees do things "by the book." If we want cultural and organizational "rules" and norms to change, we need to change what the book says.

 

7. Establish a position to rotate and train line officers to champion and implement TMO. This spreads responsibility and commitment throughout the ranks of upcoming leaders. It also provides an avenue for candidates to demonstrate their enthusiasm and dedication to multicultural workforce goals.

 

8. Market TMO as a business advantage to the agency, including identifying advantages for the units and individual employees. A challenge without a desirable consequence invites resistance. People support a challenge when they understand how it benefits them. Some of the benefits of enhanced multiculturalism to the organization and to individual employees are listed below.

 

Workforce diversity is a solution for coping, taking the advantage, and "making the most" of changes in society and in the Agency.

 

A workforce that reflects citizen diversity increases our rapport with the public, enhances the trust of the public, and helps secure the collaboration of the public.

 

Working within a multicultural organization helps employees to respect and value differences. Multicultural organizations become "we" instead of "us" and "them", which enhances ability to work cooperatively instead of adversarially. Harmony in the workplace is strengthened and dissension is resolved quickly.

 

A multicultural workforce offers daily practice in being more creative and accepting non-traditional ways. Working with multicultural teams stretches our vision and perspectives, which prepares the Agency for changing times by increasing tolerance and flexibility.

 

Including traditionally excluded groups makes use of all the resources and better use of candidate pools, demographic trends, and labor shortfalls.

 

Inclusion creates greater job stability and career opportunity, while filling some gaps in skills.

 

A multicultural workforce enhances our "survivability" by including all segments of society in the support base for a Forest Service of the future. Recognizing all Americans as stakeholders in the outcome assists the Agency in identifying comprehensive customer needs and creates a better product.

 

9. Track, monitor, and communicate actions, including successes and awards. These behaviors always accompany goals that have real leadership support and priority. Keeping the goal in the news builds interest and support from the grassroots and reassures that the goal is still relevant and important.

 

10. Integrate responsibilities for managing human and natural resource tasks. One of the biggest hurdles that the Agency is struggling to cross is the change from primarily resource-focused work to inclusion of employee input and public opinion work. This change is a huge cultural transition. The Forest Service is at the threshold of success with community collaboration projects. The Agency's future is created by successes in managing public opinion through knowledge and discussion of resource needs and outcomes. Human resources and public participation cannot continue to be the tasks of one or two staff groups. All staff groups in all deputy areas must be engaged in managing the social elements that impact natural resource agendas. No staff group should escape accountability for demonstrating improvement. If this merger is not achieved, the human resource agenda will continue to be perceived as "not the real work", and resource-focused staff groups will not use opportunities to create desired results.

 

 

 

V. MATERIAL EVALUATED

 

 

A. Towards a Multicultural Oganization (TMO) documents

 

Introduction

In July, 1997, Forest Service Chief Mike Dombeck traveled to several Forest Service sites around the country to talk personally with employees about the importance of Civil Rights. He said, "Our success as resource managers ... depends on our willingness to understand each other's perspectives and treat people fairly." He charged us to reconnect with the ideas from the Toward a Multicultural Organization (TMO) report published in 1991. The evaluation of TMO started there.

 

Following, you will find an analysis of the 1991 TMO report, implementation plan, taskforce recommendations, and current accomplishment as indicated in the USDA ordered full CR Assessments of all Agency offices conducted by February, 1997. All TMO reports were approved between 1992 and 1994. Some TMO recommendations have been finalized, some are ongoing, and some have not been addressed to date. Most of the lead responsibility for implementation of recommendations is assigned to the Washington Office. Most of the progress reported in the full CR Assessments from field offices was actions planned but not implemented or in progress.

 

Many of the offices recommended changes and gave specific direction to their managers and employees as a result of the Civil Rights Assessments. Region one developed behavioral criteria which managers agreed to use in holding each other accountable. Region five plans to use the CIP as the primary tool for measuring human resource management objectives in their strategic plan. Region six plans to utilize a "Working Agreement" between Forest Supervisors and the Regional Forester as an outline of actions to take to improve Civil Rights and workforce diversity. Managers have been instructed to include work environment in their agreement. Region eight is planning to annually update all employees on TMO goals, objectives and progress.

 

 

 

Taskforce Reports

In this section of the evaluation report, each TMO tackforce document is reviewed and assessed for its present status, issues, and usefulness in moving the Forest Service towards a Multicultural Organization.

 

 

 

Outreach and Recruitment

A Servicewide, Strategic Plan

 

 

Issues Complete Pending %Complete

23 8 15 35%

 

 

The ultimate goal is a servicewide, strategic plan for outreach and recruitment to achieve a skilled, multicultural workforce that mirrors American society and values people. Outreach informs the public about the Forest Service mission, vision, and guiding principles, educates about natural resource needs and management, and presents benefits and services with equal opportunity. Recruitment is the coordinated approach to attract applicants.

 

The desired results of consolidated efforts are:

Policy for Deputy Areas which provides:

- a clear and consistent message,

- clear direction to avoid duplication,

- methods to capitalize on new outreach efforts,

- mechanisms for sharing outreach information servicewide, and

- direction to give assigned priority to schools for reaching multicultural objectives.

 

Conservation Education Programs that incorporate:

- coordination with other Deputy Areas,

- a message of career opportunities in natural resources,

- guidelines and direction that prioritize schools for reaching multicultural objectives.

 

Recruitment initiatives at targeted universities with:

- ability to provide needed skills,

- ability to meet multicultural objectives,

- a demonstrated willingness to participate.

 

Servicewide recruitment planning which:

- is based on a servicewide workforce plan,

- includes AEP/FEORP strategies,

- includes recruitment initiatives and targeted universities,

- lists expected contributions of positions to accomplish initiatives.

 

Recruitment Cadre with principles and budget that:

- are based on the recruitment plan,

- provide leadership, coordination, facilitation and training,

- outline how the board will be used for recruitment,

- Ensure adequate budget is available.

 

A policy on GS-11 & above including SES that:

-brings upper level appointments and selections in line with multicultural objectives.

 

 

This report provided six Strategies to achieve the expected results:

 

1. Servicewide coordinated approach to outreach,

2. Servicewide workforce planning,

3. Coordinated approach to recruitment,

4. Servicewide recruiter cadre,

5. Temporary workforce recruitment,

6. GS/GM 13 and above positions (including SES).

 

 

Strategy 1: Servicewide coordinated approach to outreach.

 

a. A policy to coordinate outreach among Deputy areas that provides mechanisms for sharing information and gives priority to organizations that meet multicultural objectives.

 

b. An annual communication plan that sets priority outreach issues and messages in a presentation package of video and printed material.

 

c. An employee orientation program that includes the new outreach philosophy.

 

d. A Natural Resource Conservation Education Program for ALL segments of society that gives outreach priority to systems and organizations that help meet multicultural objectives.

 

e. New partnerships for outreach efforts, coordinated servicewide.

 

 

Strategy 2: Servicewide Workforce Planning

 

a. Issue guidelines for workforce planning, and establish mechanisms for monitoring progress.

 

b. use a uniform and consistent planning process. Identify skills needed by occupational area, grade level, and projected workforce attrition. Interface with outyear budgeting and the Integrated Personnel System.

 

c. Top managers will implement the planning process and submit unit plans to the WO.

 

d. Composite plan will be used to formulate Affirmative Employment Plan(AEP), Federal Employment Outreach and Recruitment Plan(FEORP) and other workforce planning documents. Also use as a tool for training, retention, workforce management, etc.

 

Strategy 3: Coordinated Approach to Recruitment

 

a. All levels select recruitment initiatives and target universities, chosen on the basis of ability to provide needed skills and meet multicultural objectives.

 

b. Finalize servicewide recruitment plan that reflects input from all levels, includes AEP goals and FEORP strategies, and lists expected contributions of positions.

 

c. All levels develop recruitment plans for their geographic areas.

 

d. Coordinate development of recruitment materials for servicewide use; coordinate these with materials from Strategy 1.

 

 

Strategy 4: Servicewide Recruiter Cadre

 

a. Establish servicewide recruiter cadre.

 

b. Director of Personnel, WO, will train, coordinate, and lead cadre.

 

c. Director of Personnel Management, WO, will direct use of cadre.

 

d. Fund, maintain, and develop cadre adequately.

 

Strategy 5: Temporary Workforce Recruitment

 

Develop servicewide policy for diversification, including selection criteria, how temporary workers can become permanent, processes to be used by Regional Foresters and Directors, and use of "name requests."

 

Strategy 6: GS/GM-13 and above positions, including Senior Executive Service (SES)

 

a. Bring policy of promotions of GS-11 and above into line with multicultural objectives.

 

b. For GS/GM-13 and above positions, use an internal multicultural pool with a Succession Planning Model, using details and temporary promotions as appropriate. Develop external applicant pools for use when internal pool does not meet multicultural objectives.

 

 

Evaluation Comments:

 

Changes since the early nineties have influenced recruitment methods. Demographics of the labor pool are becoming less traditional, and populations are shifting from rural to urban communities in some parts of the country. As society becomes more diverse, the FS workforce does not reflect society in diversity or perspective. Agency change is not happening fast enough.

 

The Servicewide Recruitment Coordination Board (SWRCD) was established in FY 93. It holds regular meetings and is operational and functional according to field reports.

 

A servicewide internal Outreach filing system was developed by Region one in early 1995. It has since migrated to the IBM.

 

The 1990 TMO report and recommendations did not envision the use of the Internet as a recruitment tool for increasing communication, advertising opportunities, and outreaching a world of diverse candidates. Office of Personnel Management(OPM) now requires all external opportunities to be advertised on the FJOBs (USAJobs) database on the Internet. Candidates now have an easy method of surveying job ads and responding electronically.

 

Since downsizing and reorganization started, a number of mid-career employees are seeking employment with the private sector or other agencies because of career uncertainty or income needs. These employees are mostly our career trainees, women, and minorities. We need to keep the diversity we already have by working with our existing employees. Some suggestions are promotions, growth, and movement.

 

FS visits or participation in career fairs have decreased due to downsizing and lower budgets. There is a perception that there is no need to outreach and recruit while downsizing.

 

EPS and downsizing have reduced commitments for positions on the annual recruitment plan.

 

The need in the field for someone funded to go to target group universities, actively recruit, be a central contact with a list of potential employees, know the candidates, their needs, skills etc. is filled by the National Student Initiative agreements. Liaisons are in place at several partner institutions. Some of the student programs mentioned by field offices in the full Civil Rights Assessments of February, 1997 are Commencement 2000 and External outreach taskforce accomplishments in Region 5, Branching out to the Youth of America: Summer Environmental Education Outreach Program at the Northeast Station.

 

There is also a sector of diverse temporary employees waiting for Forest Service permanent jobs. We need to prepare now so that the workforce of the future will better reflect the diversity of society, yet we need to be honest about the current situation in which the temporary workforce may be less diverse than the present permanent employees. Efforts to diversify temporary candidates are needed.

 

 

In Conclusion, thirty-five percent of the original recommendations have been completed. To date, the completed TMO report recommendations have not made a significant impact at the field level of the organization. Leadership, planning and coordination are needed. A plan for the future needs to include trainee/journeyman positions now. Monitoring the National Student Recruitment Initiatives carefully will assure that FS gets its money's worth in results from that single affirmative employment strategy.

 

 

 

Continously Improving Our Work Environment

 

 

Issues Complete Pending % Complete

7 3 4 45%

 

 

The ultimate goal is a positive work environment using supervisor and employee discussions about opportunities for change and how to measure or evaluate progress on each unit of the organization.

 

The desired results of success are:

* spacious, safe, healthy, aesthetically pleasing, accessible workplaces.

* workplaces free of discrimination and harassment.

* employees who are trusted, empowered, viewed as important, and encouraged to

grow, develop, exercise creativity and fulfill personal and professional goals.

* Supervisors and managers who are adept at interpersonal skills and who encourage,

develop, reward, and support employees.

* Open, two-way communications and timely sharing of information to improve teamwork,

cooperation, and productivity.

* A multicultural/diverse workforce who are fully accepted in FS work environments, and

employees who strive to promote acceptance in their communities.

* Powerful leadership commitments to help create and maintain productive and supportive

work environments.

 

 

Strategies:

 

1. Institute a Continuous Improvement Process (CIP). This contains four elements:

a. survey,

b. feedback,

c. action, and

d. evaluation.

 

2. Hold employees accountable for influencing work environment. CIP issues should be part of performance elements, employee orientation, and supervisor selection. Include work environment issues in FSH/FSM and ethics and conduct training.

 

3. Establish Agency policy to work with communities to achieve acceptance of diversity.

 

4. Re-examine parallel and dual career tracks for supervisors and non-supervisors.

 

5. Intensify existing efforts to incorporate universal design concepts into all Forest Service facilities.

 

6. Encourage and support local recognition of the importance of work environment.

 

 

Evaluation Comments:

 

The Forest Service, using the Continuous Improvement Process (CIP) survey, has measured whether it is moving toward the vision of being multicultural and diverse where employees work in a caring and nurturing environment. It has also measured whether leadership, power, and influence are shared; all employees are respected, appreciated, and accepted for their contributions and perspectives; and whether Agency efforts and services are highly innovative, effective, and satisfying.

 

In 1997, 56% of the CIP surveys were returned by 21,508 employees. On February 26, 1998, a summary of National survey findings was distributed to all employees. General information follows about the 1997 survey results. All units were directed to prepare a plan of action to address issues and concerns by April, 1998. The next survey is scheduled for June 1999.

 

In terms of job satisfaction, the majority were satisfied with their physical working conditions, their job, and their training. A majority were dissatisfied with opportunities for a better job. Responses to satisfaction with involvement in decisions, pay, information received, and customer satisfaction noted more satisfied than not.

 

SATISFIED DISSATISFIED

68% physical working conditions. 18%

65% personal accomplishment 19%

59% job 19%

53% training 22%

47% involvement in decisions 30%

40% information received 35%

40% pay 36%

38% recognition 38%

37% customer satisfaction 31%

37% the organization 37%

22% job opportunity 51%

 

From the most favorable responses, 82% of employees like the kind of work they do and 78% find others cooperative in getting the job done.

 

Relative to the TMO effort, 75% of employees liked the reasonable accommodations made. 75% agreed that family related benefits are avaiIable to employees. 72% agreed that policies and programs promote diversity in the workplace. Dimension ratings look favorable in the following categories:

 

FAVORABLE UNFAVORABLE

69% balancing work and family 13%

66% diversity 15%

60% work environment/life quality 23%

57% supervision 24%

53% teamwork 25%

53% customer orientation 21%

52% communication 29%

52% training/career development 26%

 

Although there is some concern that the survey is used by some as an avenue for complaining and, therefore, is not an accurate picture of the Agency, most field offices report that employees are, in fact, interested in the CIP results. Employees stress that they will continue to complete the surveys if they see changes from their efforts. Most offices reported developing action plans after the 1997 survey.

 

On the negative side, some units said that when it comes to action, very few employees want to or have time to volunteer to participate. Employees may be overwhelmed. They may believe another avenue for resolution exists, or they may take no personal responsibility for action and change. In some places, the attitude was negative at meetings to train people on how to present the 1996 survey results to employees. In these cases, CIP was viewed as a problem, not an avenue to resolution.

EEO complaints are on the downtrend, but still a major concern. Employees, in informal interviews, report an atmosphere of backlash and discrimination. Defiance is increasing as a symptom of feeling overloaded, out of control, and confused by so many changes. Employees have taken on additional duties due to downsizing. And although assuming new duties can lead to empowerment, growth, development, creativity and fulfillment of personal and professional goals, mainly it is done simply to get by with fewer people.

 

Most field offices reported that accessibility surveys and transition plans for administrative sites have been accomplished. Telephonic Devices for the Deaf (TDD) have been installed. Recreation sites are now the focus of accessibility surveys and transition planning. Surveys of experiences with reasonable accommodation needs have noted that most disabled employees are not experiencing difficulty getting the adjustments needed to do their work. Occasional situations of lack of American sign language (ASL) interpreters seemed the most prevalent problem in providing reasonable accommodations.

 

Some offices reported success with exit interviews and others recommended their use. USDA issued guidance in DPM #250-4, dated 9/97, for providing all permanent employees with a standard questionnaire at exit.

 

Informal interviews indicate that some employees believe that proposals on consolidations, downsizing and budget cuts are actually decisions masquarading as recommendations seeking employee involvement. If decisions are already made, employee input should not be requested.

 

Including temporary and seasonal employees in the CIP survey could give a more complete picture of workplace environment. Many of the entry level minorities are experiencing a temporary workplace environment which may differ greatly from daily permanent routines.

 

Some offices have reported success in having community participation in events and meetings. Others report that inviting community members to attend employee days (e.g., diversity days, career days, multiculturism days) resulted in Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests into the expense of hosting the event, with some objecting to spending government funds on such a purpose.

 

Many of today's issues, both environmental and political, are out of employees' control; therefore, the work environment is perceived to be out of their control as well. Bomb threats were mentioned in one office assessment, and morale seems low throughout the agency.

 

 

In Conclusion, results of completed recommendations #1 and #5 are good. The Agency is moving forward in sensing work environments and incorporating universal design. Other recommendation results are not obvious at the field level. With forty-five percent of the original recommendations completed, it was apparent that a lot of actions were intended, but not much had been accomplished. Monitoring could have made a difference. Plans were made and left on the shelf. The CR Assessments brought them to the surface again. Now plans are being revised or new plans made.

 

 

 

Balancing Career and Personal Needs

 

 

 

Issues Complete Pending Dropped %Complete

35 8 22 5 23%

 

 

The ultimate goal is to help employees and supervisors achieve a balance of career and personal needs. This encourages a partnership between employees and supervisors aimed at taking responsibility and solving problems together. Communication becomes more open, trusting, sensitive and respectful. Differing individual needs require flexible but fair and equitable solutions that meet minimum standards. Agency concepts of family and personal relationships stretch while meeting individual needs together.

 

The desired results address key policy areas.

FLEXIPLACE - Forest service makes available flexiplace options for employees whose normal duties can be done independently of the normal work location for at least part of the normal work week while ensuring employee accountability and productivity. Decisions regarding approvals for flexiplace will be applied consistently.

 

DEPENDENT CARE - Options are consistently applied to meet dependent care needs. These include but are not limited to flexiplace, alternate work schedules, dependents at work, dependent care facilities, leave and travel options.

 

HEALTH CARE - We provide prompt follow up to assist employees when they experience difficulties in the administration of current Federal Employee Health Benefits programs. We provide equitable coverage for permanent part-time employees.

 

MOBILITY - Mobility is primarily a personal choice. Line and key staff candidates are highly encouraged to be mobile; but for other positions, mobility is not a factor in selections. The Forest Serivice is understanding and sensitive to personal needs related to mobility, dual careers, and spousal placement.

 

PART-TIME/JOB SHARE -The Forest Service advocates and promotes the availability of part-time/ job share positions at all levels servicewide. All employees are allowed to carry over 24 credit hours.

 

PERSONAL SAFETY AND PROTECTION - All employees and their families are provided with periodic safety and security training. Where commercial communication services are not available, the Forest Service provides reliable emergency communications.

 

TRAVEL - Employees are authorized a daily phone call and use of their privately owned vehicle to transport non-government individuals on government sponsored travel reimbursed at the rate advantageous to the government. Authority to pay for additional child care expenses while in travel is being sought.

 

WELLNESS - Forest Service has established and maintained wellness programs, to the extent possible within available appropriations, encouraging employee participation. These programs are available to all employees and address both physical and emotional needs.

 

LEAVE - The Forest Service has leave options that are as flexible as possible, so that employees and supervisors can negotiate arrangements that balance mission accomplishment and the personal needs of employees.

 

 

The report is organized under four overarching Strategies, called "cornerstone recommendations" and nine policy areas that provide more specific efforts to improve the Agency's sensitivity. For this report, the cornerstone recommendations and policy items are both called "strategies."

 

Strategy 1: Adopt a caring and nurturing environment that includes an active partnership between management and employees.

 

Strategy 2: Inform and educate the workforce about balancing career and personal needs.

Communicate policies clearly in FS directives,

Develop BC&PN electronic information center and brochure,

Include a BC&PN module in training events,

Provide guidance in a single publication called a Personal Impact Considerations

Guide.

 

 

 

 

Strategy 3: Ensure accountability and recognition.

Include recognition of BC&PN needs in employee performance elements,

in the CIP, and in Management and Supervisory competencies.

 

Strategy 4: Share responsibilities for implementation.

Assign Agency-level BC&PN Program Manager and individual or team champions

at all other levels.

 

Strategy 5: Offer flexiplace options to employees.

Make flexiplace options available for employees whose normal duties can be done

independent of the work location for at least part of the work week.

 

Strategy 6: Set a policy that offers dependent care options consistently to all employees.

Offer employees the following options: flexiplace, alternative work schedules,

dependents at work, dependent care facilities, leave and travel options,etc.

Make needed changes in FS manuals and handbooks;

Advocate legislative changes that allow employees to use dependent care tax credits.

 

Strategy 7: Promptly assist employees when they experience difficulties in the administration of current Federal Employee Health Benefits (FEHB) programs.

Expand health insurance coverage to include temporary employees and all members

of employee household.

Include long-term, catastrophic, mental health, and substance-abuse coverage.

 

Strategy 8: Demonstrate sensitivity to employee needs relative to mobility, dual careers, and spousal placement.

Encourage those aspiring to line and staff positions to be mobile,

For other positions, mobility is not a factor in selections. [This is existing policy]

 

Strategy 9: Advocate and promote availability of part-time / job-sharing positions at all levels, Agency-wide.

Designate service-wide Permanent Part-time Coordinator;

Consider all position vacancies for other than full-time options;

Extend health benefits and credit hour benefits to part-time employees .

 

Strategy 10: Provide all employees and their families with periodic safety and security training.

Develop personal protective safety courses which emphasize keeping employees out

of risky situations, learning self-defense, and preventing sexual abuse.

Adequately maintain communications equipment and networks to prevent crime and

to provide emergency communications for those in remote areas.

 

Strategy 11: Adopt a family-friendly travel policy.

Reimburse child-care expenses incurred as a result of official travel;

Allow one ten-minute phone call home per day;

Allow employees to transport non-government individuals in their private vehicle

(POV) on official travel.

 

Strategy 12: Extend the Agency Wellness Program to all units.

Require all units to have a minimum wellness program;

Reinstate matching time for wellness activities;

Allow employees in travel status to select lodging where fitness facilities are available.

 

Strategy 13: Allow employees to use what leave they accrue in a year, and inform them of the leave options available to them.

Delegate leave authorization to lowest supervisory level;

Broaden definition of immediate family as it applies to sick leave;

Clarify use of administrative leave in transfer of station.

 

 

Evaluation comments:

 

One of the completed TMO report recommendations is "Chief assign a BC&PN program manager." Chris Pytel was assigned this duty but has since moved to another position. Who is the present BC&PN program coordinator? Constancy and leadership are important in this area.

 

Most field units now have flexiplace and telecommuting policies. A Presidential memo in 1994 encouraged agencies to use flexiplace as a cost efficiency and a family friendly option. 3% of the workforce was the goal set for Federal agencies. In 1997, GAO studied flexiplace implementation. Sampling surveys showed Forest Service at less than 1.5% participation in flexiplace options. Federal average for participation was 4.8%.

 

Travel regulations have been amended to accommodate dependents traveling with the parent on official business. See WO Supplement 6509.33-92-2 and ID 6509.33-97-7

 

Each employee in travel status over one night may claim one ten minute phone call per day to their local commuting area with their vouchered expenses.

 

New medical and personal leave programs have been adopted by Congress for Federal workers such as the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) of 1993.

 

Some offices have eliminated their Wellness programs (matching time and funding fitness equipment) due to budget concerns and changes in union agreements. Some people question that we can measure or see the benefits. Others feel that the cost is minimal compared to the benefits of healthy individuals.

 

Informal interviews showed that the Forest Service offers a wide variety of valuable benefits. These can be the deciding factor in whether to stay with the agency or not. Downsizing has caused us to lose ground in ethnic and gender diversity; but overall we're providing the benefits and leave consideration most employees need.

 

Informal interviews showed that maximum flexibility is important to women in the workplace. Flextime and flexiplace have kept them working and sane. Most Regions have a Dependents in the Workplace policy.

 

BC&PN is not being considered in some consolidation of offices and development of Service Centers; i.e., personnel Service Centers, which could provide depth of skills and greater support for each other, seemed to have no money savings; yet, new employees have been hired to fill vacated positions left by existing employees who could not move or adapt their needs to a centralized service location due to personal hardships.

 

Caring and nurturing behaviors appear and then get thrown aside in times of downsizing, consolidations, and budget cuts. For example, Agency direction to consolidate offices when practical has had an effect on many individual careers and personal needs. Although Civil Rights analyses and impact statements were prepared, some were copied from previous ones just to meet the requirement, and some lacked depth or commitment to the mitigation of impacts. It should be noted that employees appreciate and depend on Forest Service benefits and respond with dedication and commitment when care and nurturing are part of the relationship between employees and the agency.

 

In Conclusion, twenty-three percent of the original recommendations have been completed. "Work and Family/Personal Life" ranked high in the 1997 CIP results. The BC&PN program manager position is presently vacant; yet, many of the remaining recommendations hinge on a strong program manager.

 

 

 

Training and Development

 

 

Preparing Employees and Supervisors for a Multicultural Organization

includes:

Management and Supervisory Competencies

Career Counseling and Succession Planning

Working Within a Multicultural Society

 

This report combines the work of three groups. Each Group's report is analyzed separately below.

 

The ultimate goal of these three work groups was to develop a national focus, vision, and philosophy for three areas of training and development related to diversified workforce goals and multicultural organization management needs.

 

 

The desired results from the work done by all three groups were:

National training standards and skill competencies;

new vitality in the career counseling program;

training guidelines for such topics as

valuing multicultural and diverse organizations,

interpersonal skills, and

supervisory and management training.

 

 

Management And Supervisory Competencies

 

Issues Complete Pending % Complete

6 6 0 100%

 

 

The desired results envisioned by this workgroup are:

Forest Service managers and supervisors are

highly respected for their quality and leadership,

trained to lead a multicultural organization,

sensitive to individual needs and concerns, and

able to understand, involve, and support a diverse workforce.

 

Forest service is viewed as the employer of choice because it invests in its employees.

 

 

Six strategies were developed and implemented.

 

1) Define management competencies as a basis for management/supervisory training programs. The taskforce group defined six management competencies and specified hours and topics for training.

 

2) Evaluate and measure the application of management and supervisory competencies in the workplace using the CIP survey.

 

3) Revise direction on promotion and internal placement procedures to require mandatory use of the six competencies as evaluation criteria at the appropriate competency level .

 

4) Establish a performance element to evaluate supervisors' and managers' competencies including ability to manage a multicultural workforce.

 

5) Monitor and review effectiveness in managing a diverse workforce during every unit's management review process. Accomplish an aggressive schedule of reviews each year.

 

6) Demonstrate commitment and achievement of diverse workforce throughout the ranks of line and staff leaders. Use rewards to recognize outstanding performance in multicultural competencies.

 

 

Evaluation Comments:

 

These recommendations are the basis for the corporate training program that was approved by the National Leadership Team as of July, 1996. A Corporate Training Coordinator position was filled in December, 1996, to proceed with implementation of the program. Corporate training has been developing systems and tools for moving most of FS training under the umbrella of standardized, nationally supported training courses.

 

The new Performance Management System was not effective until November 4, 1997. At the beginning of FY 98, employees were told to wait for the new generic performance elements, instead of developing others. The old FY97 elements were used for several months of the new FY. Not having specific and useful performance expectations creates a perception of unimportance of performance and limits the ability of supervisors to improve performance in problem situations.

 

In Region 5 Line Officers and supervisors have TMO performance elements and are rated against related criteria. They also have supervisory training plans. Region six planned to develop a Regional Civil Rights Plan which will form the basis for collective performances each year called "TMO 97." The North Central Station subscribed to a "Supervisory Management" publication.

 

When employees are completing their individual development plans, they choose technical / professional courses first. If there is money and time available, they then choose a civil rights or multicultural course. Where do multicultural classes, diversity appreciation, and diversity management skills fit in?

 

It may be difficult to convince long-time supervisors that they need basic supervisory training, but a lot of them do, in fact, need to learn those skills. The desired future is a highly-respected, quality leadership sensitive to multicultural needs. Supervisory competencies are essential to this future.

 

 

In conclusion, all of the six recommendations have been implemented. Yet, management and supervision ranked low in the CR Assessments or were not mentioned at all. EEO complaints are still high and frequent. We have not reached the desired future condition in this area.

 

 

 

Career And Succession Planning

 

 

Issues Complete Pending % Complete

9 0 9 0%

 

 

The ultimate goal is to develop and enhance career counseling using the individual development plan process, career planning guides, training and development plans, and mentoring programs.

 

The desired results are:

 

Career and succession planning policies, procedures, and programs are institutionalized and integrated with workforce and strategic planning systems and information.

 

All employees have a common understanding of the variety of agency resources and developmental opportunities available through career and succession planning; and they have the knowledge, skills, and abilities to access and use them effectively.

 

All supervisory personnel and employees value and participate in meaningful employee development sessions and document both development which is planned and that which has been accomplished on the individual development plan.

 

Organizational resources are devoted to continuing development and maintenance of career and succession planning program resources. Such resources include career counseling, mentoring, and career information guides; integrated, user-friendly succession/workforce planning information; and a variety of developmental opportunities.

 

Employees are satisfied that they have been given an equal opportunity to be prepared for and pursue career goals.

 

Specific objectives are categorized by topic.

 

WorkForce Planning Information

Workforce planning information provides user-friendly profiles of the current workplace as well as projecting future Forest Service workforce needs and employment trends.

 

Individual Career Planning

All employees recognize career planning as a personal responsibility and have equal access to career planning, mentoring and counseling program resources and to training opportunities appropriate to the goals in their individual development plan.

 

Supervisor Responsibility

All supervisors are skilled in employee development, fully accept this responsibility, and are held accountable for carrying it out.

 

Individual Development Plans

All employees have current individual development plans that are updated annually. All planned training and developmental activities documented on the plan are accomplished, or if they have not been accomplished, reasons and alternatives are listed.

 

Succession Planning

The agency has a sufficiently trained, diverse pool of candidates from which to draw in filling vacancies consistent with workforce planning needs. All employees have access to succession planning information and workforce projections.

 

This taskforce provided eight strategies for achieving the desired outcomes.

 

1a) Designate a full time Career and Succession Program Coordinator in the Washington Office and co-lateral duty managers at Regions, Forests, and Stations.

 

2) Conduct a service-wide implementation workshop for CSP Coordinators at all levels of the organization introducing career development models for coordinators as well as employees and mentoring guides.

 

3) Develop user-friendly workforce planning reports that provide at least minimal information about current positions and projections for short and long term workforce needs.

 

4) Career guides will be included in design centers.

 

5) Develop supervisory guide to career development/succession planning.

 

6) Update W.O. career counseling brochure.

 

7) Establish computerized network of career/succession planning program coordinators.

 

8) Survey program coordinators to determine how user-friendly workforce

planning information works to support career succession planning.

 

Evaluation Comments:

Corporate training is key to completion of most of the recommendations in this report. The desired results says "All employees....have equal access to career planning, mentoring and counseling program resources and to training opportunities appropriate to the goals in their individual development plans."

 

Very little knowledge of the Corporate Training concept has reached field personnel. Some offices received a request to provide the number of employees who would attend each corporate training session, but there was no background included with the request. Many of the courses provided regionally were included in the listing. Some employees who have heard about the Corporate Training believe that it will hurt employees in the long run. If a course is offered in only one part of the country, travel expenses and costs would interfere with employees from another part of the country being authorized to attend.

 

Offices in their CR Assessments mentioned utilizing Individual Development Plans. An Individual Development Plans brochure is distributed by the North Central Station with performance evaluation paperwork. The North Central station has also developed a Career Information Handbook. The Southern Research Station is developing a Personal Needs Handbook which will consolidate policies concerning career and personal needs.

 

The WO Career and Succession Program Manager position was established in 1994 and vacated in 1996. It has not been refilled. Field units have not generally established co-lateral positions.

 

Downsizing without planning has produced dead end jobs, large gaps between grades, lack of trainee/journeymen positions, and employees taking on duties from vacated positions but not getting credit or advancement for the work.

 

Trainee recruitment pools in the 5-7-9 levels have been depleted. Alot of our experienced, higher graded employees have retired; and people aren't being trained to take over those positions.

 

There is little time now for career counseling and mentoring. Many employees think that the "10 person per supervisor" ratio will make it even harder for supervisors to give guidance. Downsizing and budget cuts have affected career and succession planning.

 

On-the-job training is happening more (informally) because of increased duties.

 

Sometimes training is used as a "reward." Most employees choose needed technical or professional courses, then branch out to "nice-to-do" courses after they have been in the jobs a few years. Budget concerns prohibit taking many non-professional courses. Continuing Education courses are used at times; but tuitions are prohibitive; and the courses are usually very spcecific.

 

Some Regions offer training at a Regional Training event every year. Basic courses such as Ethics and Conduct, Civil Rights, Defensive Driving are offered as well as technical and professional courses. Employees like this because they can tailor their course schedule at little cost.

 

Temporary promotions are not happening in some cases due to the amount of personnel "red tape" and lack of supervisor's knowledge. Employee details are not encouraged because of increased workloads due to downsizing. Career aspirations have taken a back seat to downsizing and budget efforts.

 

Some Forest Service employees are proud of the Forest Service attitude toward diversity and safety and do not see the same emphasis in all private and state agencies.

 

 

In Conclusion, there has been little progress in this area. None of the recommendations have been completed. Most are dependent on the Corporate training concept planned for FY 97-98 and postponed until FY99. Increased accomplishment of the recommended strategies could convince employees that they matter as individuals and reinforce the perception of fairness and equity in developmental opportunities. This area was rated very low in the 1997 CIP.

 

 

 

Working In A Multicultural Society

 

 

Issues Complete Pending % Complete

8 0 8 0 %

 

 

The ultimate goals are to develop a training program that would help employees value diversity, and to implement the necessary changes to create a work environment in which every employee contributes his or her talents to the Forest Service as a fundamental component of a successful career and a functional organization.

 

The desired results are:

 

1. Valuing differences among individuals or groups without devaluing others;

2. Understanding the role of affirmative action efforts in a multicultural organization;

3. Developing and managing the human potential of individuals; and

4. Building a Forest Service community from individuals and groups who come from different cultures, backgrounds, beliefs, and potentials, but who are all unified in the common goals of the Forest Service Mission, Vision, and Guiding Principles.

 

This report provided eight strategies:

 

1) Adopt the knowledge/skills needed for all employees to understand and be successful in a multicultural organization.

 

2) Adopt the multicultural learning experience approach as the training model to provide the knowledge/skills recommended in the report.

 

3) Establish a multicultural resource center for FS-wide use.

 

4) Adopt the accountability standards for multicultural training.

 

5) Delegate the design and implementation of training programs at the local level to multicultural teams.

 

6) Develop guidelines for future multicultural teams.

 

7) Clarify the role and contribution of employee resource groups in a multicultural organization.

 

8) Replace all references to "Forest Service Family" with "Forest Service Community."

 

 

Evaluation Comments:

 

One of the goals of the taskforce report is to understand the role of affirmative action efforts in a multicultural organization. Affirmative action processes have been challenged or even abolished in California, Texas, Colorado and in the Congress recently.

 

In the full CR Assessments of 1997, most offices that reported providing TMO training also reported that TMO training is not well attended. Some of the sessions provided are Working Together: How to Become More Effective in a Multicultural Organization offered by the North Central Station, and Valuing Diversity Training offered by numerous field offices. Why are these poorly attended? The role of diversity training has been fuzzy and lacked assurance. It was perceived as a nice extra. Perhaps the mandatory USDA training module on sensitivity to diversity will bolster the concept that this kind of training is essential to our future.

 

Informal interviews with employees showed that they are looking for training to improve their professional skills. Forest Service training is scarce for developing professionals. After the initial few courses, very little training is available. With Regional Offices downsizing, expertise is not available to learn "on the job" at the forest level.

 

Differences among individuals are not valued. Often lack of respect and hostilities show among employees. Sometimes these hostilities are carried over into other meetings or aspects of the job. Confrontations affect the work environment of the whole group. Some offices are offering collaborative learning courses to help with internal and external conflicts. Many offices have harassment free policies.

 

An official message was received from the Chief encouraging field offices to change "family meetings" to "employee" meetings.

 

The role of the Employee Resource Groups has been differentiated from other employee Associations and groups. The latitude and limits to Resource group functions were clarified in a WO 6170 letter titled Employee Associations, Organizations, and Groups dated May 9, 1997.

 

The Mission, Vision, and Guiding Principles are what guide the Agency, but some employees are not convinced that every new Chief is committed to them.

 

 

In Conclusion, TMO trainings are offered but not well attended. Most employees are still focused on resources and projects rather than on solving people problems. Multicultural training is typically not chosen on Individual Development Plans, taking a back seat to professional and technical courses. Employees do not have a vision of the usefullness of diversity training and are unwilling to invest scarce time and effort in these skills at the expense of their technical and professional tasks. Multicultural skill are not valued as professional skills or promoted by supervisors. The niche and role of diversity training needs to be emphasized in employee training.

 

 

 

Individual and Organizational Accountability in the Forest Service

Successful Management of Work Agreements

 

The accountability taskforce was chartered in the fall of 1991 and produced a report in February of 1994. Although the taskforce was not closely associated with the TMO effort, it happened concurrently, conformed to the Mission, Vision, and Guiding Principles, and strengthened the motivation for cultural change. It conformed to the needs matching the focus area of the TMO efforts. No other taskforce was assigned to this focus area although some discussion of accountability appeared in most of the TMO taskforce reports.

 

The ultimate goal of the accountability taskforce was to make a strategic analysis of accountability and to design an approach to improving accountability in the Forest Service taking into account the desire to achieve a leadership and organizational culture in which responsibility and accountability for excellence are shared by all employees in the execution of the Forest Service's Mission, Vision, and Guiding Principles.

 

 

The desired results were presented as future behaviors:

Shared leadership for accountability.

1. Expectations are jointly established, problem solving and decision making

are participatory, and accountability for results is shared.

2. Leaders value development of integrated responses to issues and problems

and elimination of excessive direction.

3. Leaders provide timely feedback, foster change, and deliver positive or

negative consequences when warranted.

4. The environment for addressing agency work is open. All employees are

encouraged to share their views, and individual values are respected.

 

Attention to the human resources and work environment for accountability.

1. All employees are well trained and equipped to do their jobs.

2. Managers foster a work environment in which all employees welcome

constructive feedback on performance and where prompt and appropriate

recognition strengthens the accountability of individuals and units throughout

the organization.

3. Employees from all levels actively participate in oversight mechanisms that

assess individual and unit performances and accountability.

 

Focus on the Customer for accountability

1. Employees and units take measures to know their publics and their

expectations, seek their inputs and involvement, and respond to them.

2. Customers are involved and included in oversight processes, as well as in

determining adjustments resulting from monitoring activities.

 

 

The Strategies were presented as the seven step scheme:

 

1. Establish work agreements along with measures and standards in a participatory manner.

 

2. Set priorities among the work agreements.

 

3. Check progress periodically through self assessments and progress checks.

 

4. Define adjustments as necessary in a participatory manner.

 

5. Implement adjustments, such as rewards and punishments or more funding as needed.

 

6. Demonstrate and communicate results in ways that are meaningful to customers.

 

7. Conduct performance feedback loops to improve work agreements in the future.

 

 

Actions were discussed to reinforce the implementation and organizational change.

 

1. Institutionalize Corporate Accountability by revising the directives system.

2. Provide accountability training for employees, supervisors, and leaders.

3. Strengthen the review process using accountability indicators.

4. Recognize accountability performance by reinforcing actions improving

accountability.

5. Promote organizational successes using rewards and champions.

6. Accelerate cultural change by promoting shared leadership and shared

accountability.

7. Monitor and track accountability through established indicators or benchmarks.

 

 

Evaluation Comments:

 

Accountability is mentioned many times in the TMO efforts and in subsequent efforts to improve equal employment opportunity and fair program delivery.

 

Although accountability is repeatedly mentioned in the TMO reports and is identified as one of only six focus areas, TMO efforts did not tackle this topic head on and had difficulty adopting the one concurrent report from the taskforce on this topic. The Implementation Plan says that the Implementation team "examined and integrated other current and similar taskforce and staff efforts" but leaders of the TMO program have been reluctant to name the February, 1994, taskforce on accountability report as part of the TMO effort.

 

The following accountability recommendations from page 8 of the Continuously Improving our Work Environment report were not included in overall recommendations or status reports and have not been formally addressed:

1) Include individual responsibility for influencing work environment in position

descriptions,

2) As existing civil rights performance elements are modified, the new statements should

include:

(a) involvement in the continuous improvement of work environments and

(b) definition of the elements of a good work environment,

3) Include work environment issues in management reviews, and

4) Include as new policy in FSH/FSM.

 

Recommendation #4 from Working in a Multicultural Society report, "Adopt accountability standards for multicultural training" emphasizes that all employees and especially supervisors must be held accountable for participating in multicultural learning experiences.

 

Balancing Career and Personal Needs report has accountability as one of four cornerstone recommendations highly influencing success.

 

The new SES element for EO/CR standards for FS leaders says "Provides evidence of outreach efforts to serve under-represented populations" and "Makes progress in developing a diversified workforce by increasing the number of females, minorities, or persons with disabilities that are in under-represented categories."

 

The new generic EO/CR element and standards for all employees says "Creates a work environment that provides equal opportunity for all employees in accordance with law, regulations, and USDA and Forest Service policy" and "Demonstrates valuing diversity by activity seeking and using a broad range of experiences, backgrounds, and points of view to achieve organizational goals and support employee's success and development."

 

1993 Government Performance Results Act (GPRA) Goal #6 of Performance Criteria was to:

1) Implement key recommendations for taskforces developed in accordance with TMO.

2) Take actions to ensure right mix of skill and expertise to get job done and strengthen

Agency human resources through enhanced training.

 

The 1997 FS GPRA Strategic Plan identifies management initiative #1 as Workforce Management defined as "an innovative, people oriented work environment and workforce that is representative of society as a whole." It states that the Forest Service will achieve the following:

1) planning processes that fully integrate the needs and values of all publics, including low-income, minority and historically underserved communities,

2) program services and benefits that are fully extended to low-income, minority and historically underserved communities through aggressive systemic changes in program delivery projects; and

3) cultural competencies that will be fully implemented within the organization.

Time Frame for Completion was set "by the end of 2002." GPRA is an excellent tool for improving accountability for TMO using a current priority.

 

 

In Conclusion, accountability has barely been considered in the status of TMO. Recommendations were not included in the first status reports and not monitored to date. Accountability recommendations within the taskforce reports are mostly incomplete, and the accountability taskforce's proposed behavioral change to using work agreements to manage responsibility and accountability have not made a very loud noise yet. Most employees have not even seen the report. The new generic EO/CR element and standards define the expectation of results. Holding all employees accountable for results is key to TMO success. Both CRAT follow up and GPRA include the concepts of diversifying the workforce and including under-represented populations. These are avenues of future accountability for TMO goals.

 

 

 

Recognition

 

The Ultimate Goal in recognition mentioned in the TMO report was "fully and appropriately recognizing individuals and organizational units for the full range of multicultural accomplishments.

 

Two Strategies listed in the TMO report were:

 

1. Enhance the formal recognition given for multicultural accomplishments at all levels of the organization; and

 

2. Enhance recognition of multicultural achievements at the national level through Chief's special awards.

 

 

Evaluation Comments

 

The TMO Implementation Plan listed recognition as one of six focus areas requiring a Service-wide approach; however, there was no recognition taskforce chartered to develop this focus area.

 

In the 2/97 CR Assessement analysis, some regions and most stations are rated low to moderate in their recognition efforts. Multicultural achievements are recognized at some local units, but these are isolated examples.

 

There is no adequate system for tracking awards and recognition for civil rights or multicultural accomplishments. The current NFC tracking system does not specify what the award was for or which program it benefitted.

 

The Chief's awards program first included achievements in multicultural organization in 1993. Chief Dombeck changed the dollar amount of the Chief's Multicultural Award from $10,000 group / $10,000 individual to $20,000 group / $5,000 individual. The revised amounts reinforce the emphasis on team efforts over individual recognition which is one cultural change identified as needed in the TMO efforts.

 

 

Evaluation comments for TMO in general:

 

The January 1996 TMO status report listed four recommendations under Toward a Multicultural Organization:

 

1) Appoint someone to lead in the planning and implementation of human resource programs;

2) Integrate human resource management into Agency management and decisionmaking;

3) Require cultural diversity in all decisionmaking groups in the agency;

4) Conduct on-the-ground reviews of workforce diversity and work environment using top FS managers, personally .

 

These were in the "Completed/On-Going" section and not mentioned before or after this status report. The status of these recommendations is not known by employees in general.

 

 

 

 

B. The USDA Civil Rights Action Team (CRAT)

 

Introduction

 

 

In December, 1996, black farmers demonstrated outside the White House and sued the Secretary of Agriculture for discriminatory practices within the Department. Minorities, women, and disabled employees charged that discrimination, sexual harassment, favoritism and reprisal were common at USDA. The Agency was also flooded with EEO complaints from employees. They alleged unfair management practices, insensitive managers, hostile work environments, and lack of protection from reprisals. Many employees felt they were discriminated against because of race, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, disability, gender or age. Employees said that USDA management is neither accountable for nor committed to civil rights. Many complained about the complaint process itself. Some pointed out it had been years since they had filed a complaint, but they had heard nothing back.

 

Therefore, Secretary of Agriculture Glickman established a Civil Rights Action Team (CRAT) to develop a set of recommendations to address institutionalized and underlying problems, and to ensure accountability and follow-through at USDA. CRAT published its report "Civil Rights at the United States Department of Agriculture" in February, 1997, with the purpose of achieving the Secretary's goal that employees and customers be treated fairly and equitably, and with dignity and respect.

 

The CRAT Report

 

The CRAT report is the result of an audit of civil rights issues facing the USDA , which has 32 agencies and approximately 85,000 employees. The report displays by number and percentage USDA's permanent workforce in ethnic, racial, and gender category. It also breaks down data into different grade levels. It lists the 113 past reports and recommendations developed by various agencies to implement civil rights policies, including the TMO reports developed by the Forest Service. On page 39, the report says "several past reports and task forces have identified problems in workforce diversity as well as proposed solutions, but little has been done to implement those recommendations." And on page 57, it states "USDA has allowed too many past reports to gather dust and too many recommendations to go unimplemented".

92 recommendations in the report are grouped into four major categories each of which contains broad goal statements and specific numbered recommendations as well as action plan items that incorporate the responsibility for "who and when." The four major categories for grouping the recommendations are as follows:

 

I. Lack Of Management Commitment To Civil Rights

II. Program Delivery And Outreach

III. Workforce Diversity And Employment Practices.

IV. Organized Structure Of Civil Rights

 

A more detailed summary of CRAT recommendations and status can be found in the Appendice section of this report.

 

 

CRAT vs. TMO Reports

 

CRAT TMO

 

1. USDA wide (multi-agency) Forest Service (single agency)

 

2. Initiated by Secretary Approved by Chief

 

3. One Report written by one team Six reports written by separate groups

 

4. Implementation Teams Implementation Plan Published '92

 

5. Periodic Update Assessment in 1996

 

6. Impacts employees and customers Basically for employees

 

7. Established 1996; report in 1997 Established 1991; reports in 1992-94

 

8. Total recommendations - 92 Total recommendations - 93

 

9. Workforce diversity-one component Workforce diversity a major component

 

10. Aim: accountability, training, & service Aim: Employer of Choice

Conclusion

 

CRAT publications provide us with an opportunity to implement recommendations and achieve the objectives of the TMO reports. CRAT has provided the Director of Civil Rights with enough authority to proceed with actions that achieve the workforce Forest Service had envisioned, and the workplace environment that employees had wanted. TMO's recommendations and action plans need to be fully matched with the CRAT report, and actions realigned wherever possible. Implementation of TMO and CRAT could give us the desired Agency workforce composition and performance.

 

 

TMO and CRAT Crosswalk

 

The following crosswalk shows that as recommendations are accomplished by the CRIT, TMO recommendations will be accomplished as well. Most areas combine very well and can be related to each other. The areas which are not addressed by the USDA report are career planning and personal needs. For a more detailed description of strategies and recommendations, see the individual TMO reports for each.

Toward a Multicultural Organization

USDA Forest Service

Civil Rights Action Team

USDA

 

 

 

Outreach and Recruitment

I. Management Commitment to Civil Rights

 

 

E. Sec., Subcab. & Agency heads must set examples

of Diversity

 

 

F. Include goals in USDA's strategic Plan

 

 

 

 

 

III. Workforce Diversity and Employment Practices

 

 

B. Hold Managers accountable for diverse pools of

applicants

 

 

D. Hold Managers accountable for diverse workforce.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Working Environment

I. Management Commitment to Civil Rights

 

 

B. Ensure Dept. has measurable goals for fair

and equitable treatment

 

 

C. USDA policy on reprisal

 

 

G. Identify core competencies/skills for managing

people.

 

 

H. Investigate alleged abuse of authority.

 

 

 

 

 

III. Workforce Diversity and Employment Practices

 

 

C. Require all USDA employees to have Civil Rights

training.

 

 

 

 

 

IV. Organizational Structure of Civil Rights

 

 

D. Establish Civil Rights office in each agency

 

 

E. Adopt new Conflict Management Policy at USDA

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Management and Supervisory Competencies

I. Management Commitment to Civil Rights

 

 

D. Remove employees who do not perform on Civil

Rights or abuse authority

 

 

G. Identify core competencies/skills for managing

people.

 

 

 

 

 

II. Program Delivery and Outreach

 

 

A. Review all USDA SES designations

 

 

 

 

 

III. Workforce Diversity and Employment Practices

 

 

E. Employee Complaints

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Career and Succession Planning

NOT ADDRESSED

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Working in a Multicultural Society

I. Management Commitment to Civil Rights

 

 

G. Identify core competencies/skills for managing

people.

 

 

 

 

 

II. Program Delivery and Outreach

 

 

A. Manage USDA Programs in accordance with Civil

Rights policy

 

 

B. Remedy past discriminations

 

 

 

 

 

III. Workforce Diversity and Employment Practices

 

 

C. Require all USDA employees to have Civil Rights

training.

 

 

D. Hold Managers accountable for diverse workforce.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Balancing Career and Personal Needs

NOT ADDRESSED

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Standards for Accountability

I. Management Commitment to Civil Rights

 

 

A. Delegate to the Asst. Sec. for Admin. full Civil

Rights Authority

 

 

B. Ensure Dept. has measurable goals for fair

and equitable treatment

 

 

C. USDA policy on reprisal

 

 

D. Remove employees who do not perform on Civil

Rights or abuse authority

 

 

E. Sec., Subcab. & Agency heads must set examples of

Diversity

 

H. Investigate alleged abuse of authority

 

 

 

 

 

II. Program Delivery and Outreach

 

 

B. Remedy past discriminations

 

 

 

 

 

III. Workforce Diversity and Employment Practices

 

 

B. Hold Managers accountable for diverse pools

of applicants

 

 

D. Hold Managers accountable for diverse workforce

 

 

E. Employee Complaints

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IV. Organizational Structure of Civil Rights

 

 

C. Make OGC accountable for Civil Rights

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recognition

III. Workforce Diversity and Employment Practices

 

 

D. Hold Managers accountable for diverse workforce

 

 

 

VII. MATERIALS EVALUATED OR REFERENCED FOR TMO EVALUATION REPORT

 

1. Toward a Multicultural Organization (TMO) Report of the USDA Forest Service Task Force

on Workplace Diversity, March 1991.

 

2. TMO Implementation Plan, (identified six focus areas and chartered the taskforce efforts.)

 

3. Outreach & Recruitment, A TMO Servicewide Strategic Plan, 1993.

 

4. Continuously Improving Our Work Environment, A TMO Report, 1993.

 

5. Balancing Careers & Personal Needs, a TMO Report, 1995.

 

6. Preparing Employees and Supervisors for a Multicultural Organization, a consolidated

TMO Report, 1994

 

Management & Supervisory Competencies

 

Career & Succession Planning,

 

Working in a Multicultural Society,

 

7. Individual and Organizational Accountability in the Forest Service, a TMO Report, 1994

 

8. TMO Evaluation Team Charter, August 1997.

 

9. Civil Rights at the United States Department of Agriculture, (USDA) a Report of the Civil

Rights Action Team (CRAT), February 1997.

 

Interim Progress Report, September 1997

 

One Year of Change, March 1998

 

10. Blue Ribbon Task Force Report on Equal Opportunity and Diversity at USDA, May 1966.

 

11. Civil Rights Assessments -- Reports of Forest Service (FS) Regions, Stations, and the

Washington Office, February 1997

 

12. Profile of Forest Service Workforce, Reports for numerous years.

 

13. U. S. Bureau of Census Demographic Data Reports.

 

14. Mission, Vision, Guiding Principles

 

15. TMO Reports and role of SCRC, Jenny Stephenson & Suraj Ahuja

 

16. 1700 letter dated 12-20-92, signed by Luther Burse, USDA Employee Focus Group on

Equal Employment Opportunity & Civil Rights

 

17. Implementation TimeLine & Current Status, "Towards a Multicultural Organization" Task

Force Reports, 1993-97

 

18. 1700 Chief's Awards letter dated 5-7-93, signed by David F. Jolly and WO 1700 letter with

WO 1700 letter, dated 4-28-93, signed by George M. Leonard, Secretary's EEO & Civil

Rights Policy Statement

 

19. Administrative Management Council Briefing Notes, 3-30-94

 

20. 6140 letter dated 6-7-94, signed by Katherine Q. Solberg, Chief's Awards

 

21. 1700 letter dated 7-25-97, signed by Mike Dombeck, Leadership Commitment to Civil

Rights

 

22. 1300 letter dated 10-24-97, signed by Mike Dombeck, FS WO Procedural changes to

Improve Accountability.

 

23. TMO Implementation Plans: Evaluations & Summaries, 9-18-97

 

24. 1300 letter dated 10-24-97, signed by Mike Dombeck, FS WO Procedural changes to

Improve Accountability.

 

 

 

VIII. DEFINITIONS

 

Multicultural: Diverse cultural representation in institutions. Incorporates seeking and valuing different value sets as a strength and necessity for providing access, opportunity, influence, and decision making to all segments of society.

 

Culture: Interactions of groups with peers, families, neighbors, and community for transmitting knowledge to succeeding generations. Includes symbols, artistic creations, and other expressions of self and community. Customary beliefs, social forms, and material traits of a racial, religious, or social group.

 

Diversity: The quality of being different which produces balance and integrity of being for all persons. An appreciation for different cultures, values, and viewpoints through recognition of their intrinsic right to be.

 

Interpersonal: Involves relations among persons. Behavior that maintains relationships toward achieving objectives.

 

Tolerance: A sympathy or indulgence of differing beliefs or practices. Embracing differences as a value of balance and variety in societies.

 

 

 

IX. LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS

 

AAP Affirmative Action Plan

ADR Alternative Dispute Resolution

AEP Affirmative Employment Plan

AERP Affirmative Employment and Recruitment Plan

ASA Assistant Secretary for Administration

ASL American Sign language

BC&PN Balancing Career and Personal Needs

CIP Continuous Improvement Process

CRAT Civil Rights Action Team

CRIA Civil Rights Impact Analysis

CRIT Civil Rights Implementation Team

C&SP Career and Succession Planning

DOJ Department of Justice

EEO Equal employment opportunity

EEOC Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

EIP Early Intervention Program

EO Equal Opportunity

EPS Employee Placement System

FEHB Federal employees health benefits

FEORP Federal Equal Opportunity Recruitment Plan

FOIA Freedom of Information Act

FSPC Forest Service Partnership Council

GPRA Government Performance Results Act

OGC Office of the General Counsel

OIG Office of the Inspector General

OPM Office of Personnel Management

POV Privately owned vehicle

PRB Performance Review Board

SEPM Special Emphasis Program Manager

SCRC Service-wide Civil Rights Committee

SES Senior Executive Service

TDD Telephonic Device for Deaf persons.

TMO "Toward a Multicultural Organization" [a report]

USDA United States Department of Agriculture

WO Washington Office (FS headquarters)

 

 

 

 

 

 


Appendix One

CRAT Recommendations Summary and Status

 

 

Under each major category, all broad goal statements and recommendations are summarized below. Action plan items are not summarized, only enumerated.

 

I. Lack Of Management Commitment To Civil Rights

 

A. Delegate to the Assistant Secretary for Administration (ASA) full Civil Rights Authority:

 

Three recommendations # 1-3 - To ensure civil rights accountability, delegate to ASA to rate agency heads on civil rights; revise the present Performance Review Board (PRB). Five Action items are listed with responsibility for who and when.

 

B. Ensure the Department has measurable goals for treating customers and employees fairly and equitably:

 

Recommendation # 4 - For secretary to reissue civil rights policy. Two action plans.

 

C. Adopt a USDA policy on reprisals.

 

Recommendation # 5 - To assure accountability. Two action plans.

 

D. Remove USDA employees who do not perform adequately on civil rights, or who abuse their authority.

 

One recommendation # 6 - Streamline procedure to take adverse and disciplinary actions against employees who violate civil rights laws and regulations. One action plan.

 

E. The Secretary, the Subcabinet and agency heads must set examples of Diversity.

 

One recommendation, # 7 - Ensure that immediate staff reflects the desired diversity. One action plan.

 

F. Include goals in USDA's strategic plan.

 

Three recommendations, # 8-10 include goals to improve workforce diversity and civil rights in Affirmative Employment Plans and Civil Rights Implementation Plans. The Plans should establish reporting requirements. They should include well-defined areas of responsibility, accountability and performance standards. Elements for the agency heads and senior officials should reflect the specific goals and objectives. Four action plans.

 

G. Identify the core competencies and skills required to effectively manage people and serve customers: two recommendations, # 11-12 - identification of core competencies and skills: require and provide ongoing training for all managers to enhance their people skills. Five action plans.

 

H. Investigate alleged abuses of authority by the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) and Forest Service, and advise on role of office of the General Counsel (OGC).

.

Three recommendations, # 13-15 - DOJ should investigate allegations of abuses of authority of OIG and Forest Service law enforcement; the Secretary to direct the Forest Service to stop use of law enforcement to investigate its employees; DOJ to provide the Secretary information on the role and functions of OGC as it relates to civil rights. Two action plans.

 

II. Program Delivery And Outreach

 

The actions in this section are customer oriented rather than employee oriented, so only the action items and recommendation are listed.

 

A. Manage USDA Programs in Accordance with USDA Civil Rights Policy.

 

Recommendations # 16-29

 

B. Take action to remedy past discriminations.

 

Recommendations # 30-35

 

C. Strengthen USDA outreach efforts to underrepresented customers.

 

Recommendations # 36-41

 

D. Strengthen USDA's Research and Educational Assistance to the socially disadvantaged

 

Recommendations # 42-51

 

E. Remove barriers to representing underrepresented customers at USDA Service Centers.

 

Recommendations # 52-59

 

F. Address needs of farm workers

 

Recommendations # 60-64

 

G. Increase involvement of small and disadvantaged business in USDA programs.

 

Recommendation # 65

 

 

III. Workforce Diversity And Employment Practices

 

 

A. Review all USDA Senior Executive Service (SES) designations.

 

Recommendation # 66 - Review all SES designations. One action plan

 

 

B. Hold all managers accountable for a diverse pool of applicants.

 

Recommendation # 67 - Managers to target outreach and recruitment of underrepresented groups as identified in the agency Affirmative Employment Plans (AEP's). Three action plans.

 

 

C. Require all USDA employees to have civil rights training.

 

Recommendation # 68 - annually. Three action plans - training starting 1998

 

 

D. Hold all managers accountable for a diverse workforce.

 

Four recommendations # 69-72 - Publicize and recognize achievers; Direct the Forest Service to end use of surplus lists; Evaluate the role and function of SEPM's; Develop and implement retention programs. Six action plans.

 

 

E. Employee Complaints

 

Five recommendations, # 73-77 - Offer mediation or arbitration to reduce EEO backlog; all EEO resolution agreements to have terms; redesign or repair the EEO complaint system; initiate a continuing and coordinated USDA-wide workforce planning and recruitment process; the Secretary to be more involved in the management and selection of the SES cadre. Nineteen action plans.

 

 

 

IV. Organizational Structure Of Civil Rights

 

 

A. Consolidate USDA's Civil Rights functions into one office.

 

Six recommendations, # 78-83 - Report directly to the ASA; organize new USDA Civil Rights office with separate employment and program civil rights components; USDA civil rights office to actively promote civil rights in USDA; USDA civil rights directors to be ultimately accountable for investigations of program discrimination complaints; Civil Rights Director will focus on improving the Department's enforcement of civil rights; Civil Rights Directors will receive an authority to create a competent staff capable of implementing an effective civil rights program. Six action plans.

 

 

B. SES status of Civil Rights Director.

 

One recommendation # 84 - To change the designation from SES general to SES career reserved. One action plan.

 

 

C. Make the Office of the General Counsel accountable for civil rights.

One recommendation # 85 - OGC must demonstrate its commitment to civil rights by establishing a separate division on Civil Rights issues. Four action plans.

 

 

 

D. Establish a Civil Rights office in each agency.

 

Three recommendations, # 86-88 - Each agency to have a Civil Rights Director who reports to the agency head; agency civil rights programs must include program planning / analysis, compliance and complaint management; agencies must have documented, measurable goals and timetables to address civil rights issues such as employment and workforce diversity; EEO counselor positions to be returned to agencies. Six action plans.

 

E. Adopt a new Conflict Management Policy at USDA.

 

Two recommendations, # 89-90 - Management responsible for preventing conflict and resolving dispute at lowest level using "interest based" approach; convene a team to develop a program to implement new conflict management policy. Five action plans.

 

 

F. Eliminate Dispute Resolution Boards' Regional Service Centers.

 

One recommendation, # 91 - To close the centers. Three action plans.

 

G. Consolidate offices under the Assistant Secretary of Administration.

One recommendation, # 92. Three action plans.

 

 

 

Following is a consolidated time table for accomplishing the actions under each recommendation:

 

REC

ACTIONS

IMMEDIATE

30

45

60

90

120

180

FY97

FY98

1-3

5

3

1

 

1

 

 

 

1

 

4

2

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5

2

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6

1

 

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

 

7

1

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8-10

4

1

 

 

 

3

 

 

 

 

11-12

5

 

 

4

 

 

 

1

 

 

13-15

2

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

16

1

 

 

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

17

3

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

2

 

18

2

 

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

19

2

 

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

20

2

1

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

 

21

1

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

22

1

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

23

1

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

24

2

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

25

1

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

26

2

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

27

1

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

28

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1

1

29

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1

30

3

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

2

 

31-35

4

 

2

 

 

 

 

 

2

 

36

1

 

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

 

37-41

7

 

4

2

1

 

 

 

 

 

42

3

 

1

 

 

2

 

 

 

0

43

2

 

 

 

2

 

 

 

 

 

44-48

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1

 

49-51

1

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

52-53

1

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

54

1

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

55

2

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

56-58

 

 

 

 

 

1

 

1

 

 

59

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

1

 

 

60-64

6

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6

 

65

3

 

2

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

66

1

 

 

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

67

3

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

2

 

68

3

 

 

 

 

 

1

 

1

1

69

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1

 

70

1

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

71

2

 

 

 

 

2

 

 

 

 

72

2

 

 

 

 

 

2

 

 

 

73

7

4

 

1

1

 

1

 

 

 

74

1

 

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

 

75

4

2

 

1

 

1

 

 

 

 

76

4

3

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

 

77

3

3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

78-83

6

3

1

 

2

 

 

 

 

 

84

1

 

 

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

85

4

2

1

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

86-88

6

3

1

1

1

 

 

 

 

 

89

2

 

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

90

5

2

 

3

 

 

 

 

 

 

91

3

1

 

1

 

 

 

 

1

 

92

3

2

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TOTAL

142

54

20

14

13

14

4

3

20

3

 

 

 

The Implementation Process

 

 

The 92 recommendations contain 144 action plans for implementation to remedy the problems. ASA established a Civil Rights Implementation Team (CRIT) of 30 employees. For the 79 recommendations that do not require legislation by Congress, the team was charged to develop project plans to implement them. For the 13 recommendations that required funding or legislative action, the team was asked to draft legislative proposals.

 

The recommendations have been grouped and assigned to 33 action teams comprising nearly 300 employees. Each action team has an executive sponsor, a team leader, a CRIT liaison, and a CRAT advisor.

 

Based on the categories of the recommendations, each of the 33 Action Teams was assigned to one of four CRIT units:

 

1. A Program Delivery Team, headed by Mon Yee, Assistant State Conservationist with the Natural Resources Conservation Service in Oregon;

2. A Management Commitment to Workforce Diversity Team, headed by Mark Mulugeta, Assistant Administrator for the Risk Management Agency;

3. An Organizational Structure Team, headed by Mike Alexander,

Confidential Assistant to the Director of the Office of Civil Rights;

 

4. An Outreach Team, headed by John Bottum, Associate Deputy Administrator for the Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service.

 

5. In addition, there is a Management Support Team, headed by Denise Decker, formerly a Quality Management Specialist for NRCS's East Region, based in Beltsville, MD.

 

 

 

Accomplishments

 

The interim report released on October 17, 1997, states that work on 57 of the 92 recommendations has been completed. Work on additional 18 recommendations is almost complete. Some of the main accomplishments that impact employees are:

 

Recommendation 2: performance ratings

 

Beginning October 1, 1997 the ASA will rate agency heads on their civil rights performance elements.

 

Recommendation 5: reprisal policy

 

As of July 31, 1997, there is new reprisal policy--zero tolerance for reprisal against employees who file civil right complaints, and a policy of immediately adjusting hostile and volatile work place conditions.

 

Recommendation 6: procedures for adverse actions against the employees who discriminate.

Procedures have been streamlined.

 

Recommendation 8: Agency plans to include goals to improve workforce diversity.

 

Being implemented with recommendations 3, 4, 9, and 10.

 

Recommendation 10: plans to include responsibility and accountability.

 

Being implemented with recommendations 3, 4, 8 and 9.

 

Recommendation 11: identify core competencies and skills required to effectively manage people and serve customers, including recruitment and management of a diverse workforce and serving diverse customers. Require all promotees and management selectees to demonstrate those competencies, provide feedback, and develop performance improvement plans for managers where needed.

 

USDA will adopt the 22 basic leadership competencies developed by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) as the basis for all supervisory, managerial, and executive selections, training, and development.

 

Recommendation 12: Requires and provides ongoing training for all managers to enhance their people skills. These include managing a diverse workforce, developing criteria to measure effectiveness, providing time frames for managers to improve, and requiring agency heads to remove from managerial positions those whose performance fails to meet the criteria.

 

USDA's training policy will require competency-based training for supervisors and managers and establish a framework to evaluate its effectiveness and impact.

 

Recommendation 13: The Department of Justice should investigate the abuse of authority by the Office of the Inspector General and Forest Service law enforcement.

 

A decision memorandum has been prepared, outlining several options available to implement this recommendation.

 

Recommendation 14: The Secretary should direct the Forest Service to discontinue the practice of using its law enforcement staff to investigate Forest Service employees.

 

On September 2, 1997, the ASA was directed to stop using Forest Service Law Enforcement and Investigation (LE&I) officers to investigate the Forest Service employees.

 

Recommendation 15: The Department of Justice should advise the Secretary on the role and functions of USDA's Office of General Counsel as it relates to civil rights. The Secretary should take appropriate action to ensure that OGC has the capacity to provide the Department with the quality of legal assistance required for civil rights.

 

A new Office of General Counsel Division has been established, and the selection of the new Associate General Counsel for Civil Rights is pending. OGC will soon adopt an Affirmative Employment and Retention Plan (AERP) to add diversity to its workforce and to serve minority and women employees, as well as customers.

 

Recommendation 67: Hold all managers responsible for a diverse pool of applicants for all vacancy announcements. Target outreach and recruitment for the underrepresented as identified in the agency Affirmative Employment and Recruitment Plans.

 

A team prepared and completed the Affirmative Employment and Recruitment Plan (AERP) regulations, Personnel Bulletin 330-3, "Core Competencies for Agency Recruiters and Outreach Reports," and Personnel Bulletin 335-1, "Multi-grade positions."

 

 

Personnel Bulletin 330-3 was distributed to agency heads and Departmental Personnel Manual holders in August 1997. Recruiters and outreach representatives are scheduled to be certified by August 25, 1998.

 

Personnel Bulletin 335-1, which became effective August 18, 1997, requires agencies to provide consistent information on career ladders to all applicants; it ensures that job openings are advertised in multi-grade increments and requires career ladders be published in an agency's Merit Promotion Plan that cannot be changed for one year.

 

Recommendation 68: Require all USDA employees to have Civil Rights training annually.

 

Six major areas have been identified and will be included in the training curriculum:

 

sensitivity and diversity

EEO laws and policies

program outreach (Title VI)

sexual harassment

Title VII (employment discrimination) complaint process

Special Emphasis Programs.

 

The roles and responsibilities of USDA's Director of the Office of Civil Rights and the Director of Human Resources Management in implementing this training have been identified. Civil rights training is scheduled to start in January 1998 and to be completed by April 1998.

USDA's Office of Civil Rights will monitor and track the annual civil rights training.

 

Recommendation 69: Publicize and recognize those managers and agencies that have made significant accomplishments in workforce diversity.

 

Criteria for recognition individuals, groups, and managers for outstanding efforts in workforce diversity have been issued and incorporated into the USDA Honor Awards Program.

Recommendation 70: Direct the Forest Service to end the use of surplus lists.

 

The Forest Service suspended directed reassignments on June 16, 1997. It began negotiations with NFFE, and has completed the requested analysis of the effect on diversity and its relationship to complaints and representation activities.

 

Recommendation 71: Evaluate the role and function of the Special Emphasis Program Managers (SEPM's) in accomplishing USDA's civil rights goals and objectives. The valuable resources dedicated to support SEPMs should be used more effectively. Presently, USDA Special Emphasis managers are limited to the annual Special Emphasis activities as their primary function.

 

The SEPM's would also serve as desk officers to interface with specific agencies. Implementing this recommendation will make the SEPM's more effective and responsible to agencies' needs.

 

Recommendation 72: Develop and implement retention programs to ensure a diverse workforce.

 

This recommendation was implemented in August, 1997, with the issuance of Personnel Bulletin 250-3, "Work Life Survey Guidelines." This bulletin requires agencies to conduct periodic work life surveys aimed at assessing conditions in the workplace and identifying problems. Agencies must report results to USDA's Office of Human Resources Management.

 

Recommendation 73: To substantially reduce the backlog of EEO complaints, offer mediation, arbitration, or similar Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) processes to employees who filed a formal EEO complaint before January 1, 1997.

 

Where it appears that an agency has unreasonably refused to settle a case, USDA's Director of the Office of Civil Rights will sign an agreement in lieu of the agency. All unresolved cases will continue in the EEO process. The Assistant Secretary for Administration has directed that a small, temporary task force be established to further explore the resolution of EEO complaints.

 

Recommendation 74: All EEO resolution agreements shall have terms that (1) relate to the nature of the complaints; (2) address causal factors; (3) are conductive to timely implementation; and (4) contain implementation time frames. To ensure accountability, "no fault" settlements shall be used only in cases where all parties to the dispute agree that it is appropriate.

 

The new policy on EEO settlement agreements has been drafted. The USDA draft policy holds agency heads accountable for full, timely implementation of EEO settlements, and directs them to empower their civil rights directors to intervene and sign agreements on behalf of the agency when necessary. The draft policy further directs that "no fault" agreements shall not be used to shield acts of discrimination, and holds agency heads accountable for vigorously addressing misconduct and discrimination by their managers. The Director of USDA's Office of Civil Rights has drafted guidelines for agencies and the Office of Civil Rights staff to implement the Secretary's policy.

 

Recommendation 75: To ensure an effective and timely EEO complaints process on a permanent basis, conduct an annual independent review of USDA's existing EEO system, assess the areas of deficiency, and redesign the system.

 

An analysis of the EEO complaints process, led by an independent contractor who specializes in process reengineering, began in July 1997.

 

 

Recommendation 76: Initiate a continuing and coordinated USDA-wide workforce planning and recruitment process.

 

Personnel Bulletin 250-1, "Workforce Planning," was issued in October, 1997. It required agencies to coordinate strategic planning, recruitment efforts, affirmative employment program plans, and other strategies to ensure a highly-skilled and diverse workforce. Personnel Bulletin 250-2, "Human Resources Management Evaluation Program," requires agencies to review workforce plans and human resource management programs to emphasize responsibility and accountability, and to ensure that diversity is an integral part of the Department's workforce and programs. A new staff has been established in USDA's Office of Human Resource Management to oversee these functions. In addition, a memorandum of understanding has been drafted which establishes a research and scholar exchange program and addresses of Asian Pacific Americans in USDA's workforce.

 

Recommendation 77: The Secretary should be more involved in the management and selection of the SES cadre within USDA.

 

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) approved the USDA's Senior Executive Service Candidate Development Program (SESCDP) Plan on August 20, 1997.

 

Recommendation 81: USDA's Director of Civil Rights to be ultimately accountable for investigations of program discrimination complaints. The Director may delegate the authority to conduct preliminary investigations of program discrimination to agency civil rights directors.

 

This recommendation was implemented on May 16, 1997, when the Secretary's Memorandum 1010-4 was issued. A memo has been drafted for distribution to agency civil rights directors which, when issued, will give them the authority to conduct preliminary inquiries into program complaints.

 

Recommendation 86: To ensure that each USDA agency has civil rights accountability, each agency must have a Civil Rights Director who reports directly to the agency head. The Director will have primary responsibility for ensuring that the agency enforces all civil rights laws and that the agency complies with all complaints processing time frames.

 

The Forest Service's Director of Civil Rights currently reports to the Chief. The Secretary's Memorandum 1010-4 established that the Assistant Secretary for Administration, through USDA's Office of Civil Rights, will "provide guidance and oversight to USDA agencies and conduct compliance reviews and audits to ensure enforcement of all applicable civil rights laws, rules, and regulations. The Office of Civil Rights will monitor and oversee agency civil regulations.

 

Recommendation 87: Agency civil rights programs must include program planning / analysis, compliance, and complaints management. In addition, agencies much have documented, measurable goals and time frames to address civil rights program delivery and employment, underrepresentation, workforce diversity, and procurement.

 

Performance standards are being developed to hold agency heads accountable for establishing civil rights programs in accordance with this recommendation. Agency administration will be held accountable for operating and managing a comprehensive civil rights program. The Office of Civil Rights will focus on monitoring and ensuring that the agencies actually have an effective program which is proactive and adequately staffed and funded.

 

Recommendation 88: The EEO counselor position, including resources, must be returned to the agencies from the Department's Office of Civil Rights. All EEO counselors must be in full-time civil rights positions.

 

EEO counselor positions were returned to the Forest Service effective October 1, 1997.

 

Recommendation 89: Adopt and announce as USDA's official policy that management is responsible for preventing conflict and resolving disputes at the lowest possible level by resolving the underlying issues and preventing recurrence of conflicts. Resolve conflicts using an "interest based" approach whenever possible.

 

A new policy on conflict management has been written. It requires all USDA managers to become competent in conflict management skills, and that all employees be afforded the opportunity to participate in alternative dispute resolution outside the formal complaints systems to resolve workplace conflicts.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Appendix Two

Toward a Multicultural

Organization (TMO)

Implementation Plans -

Evaluations and Summaries

Regions

Stations

Area

International Programs

 

Team Meeting: Denver, CO - September 17-18, 1997

 

 

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter 1.................................................

Overview

 

 

Chapter 2.................................................

Evaluations: Regions

 

 

Chapter 3.................................................

Summary: Regions

 

 

Chapter 4.................................................

Evaluations: Stations, Area &

 

International Programs

 

 

Chapter 5.................................................

Summary: Stations, Area &

 

International Programs


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHAPTER ONE

 

 


Implementation Plan Evaluation: Regions, Station, Area, and International Programs

 

Overview: In December 1996, the Acting Chief directed all units to complete an assessment of their civil rights programs. In preparing this assessment for the Washington Office, all units were asked to appoint a team to evaluate the civil rights programs through employee surveys, interviews and personal knowledge of the program. The assessment was broken down into four parts: (1) Civil Rights Program Management, Resources and Organization; (2) Implementation of the Toward a Multicultural Organization (TMO) Report; (3) Title VII EEO Programs; and (4) Title VI and Related Programs.

 

Focusing on the second part, Implementation of the TMO Report, reviews and evaluations were conducted. Using the same format as the TMO Implementation Plan, each Region, Station, Area and International Program's accomplishments were gleaned from their respective assessments and listed on a fact sheet which was broken down into six focus areas:

 

Training and Development

Work Environment

Outreach and Recruitment

Family Policy

Standards for Accountability

Recognition

 

Each focus area included one or more of the 11 goals and strategies identified in the TMO Report.

 

Evaluation Process: Based on the information entered onto the fact sheets, summary sheets were compiled, transferring the data from the six focus areas into the 11 goals and strategies listed in the TMO Report. The following scale was developed based on the frequency of activities reported by the Regions, Stations, Area and International Programs:

 

H = High (5 or more activities)

M = Moderate (3-4 activities and/or strong write-up)

L = Low (1-2 activities)

Blank = No action taken

 

At first observation, this scale may seem too demanding. It is, therefore, important to realize that just one action, such as identifying a critical performance element for leaders, managers, and supervisors, can result in not just the Standards for Accountability goal being met, but three other goals are also credited: Numerical; Leadership; and, Valuing Diversity.

 

Progress: While some locations reported that their leadership had been supportive in implementing TMO since its inception. Others indicated that it needed to be revitalize since it lost its punch and enthusiasm due to downsizing and budget cuts. Although at a slow pace, some progress has been made over the past several years. Of the 39 strategies listed under the I 1 goals identified in the TMO Report, 17 were implemented to some degree.

 

Many of the actions were a result of direction coming from the National Office such as the Continuous Improvement Process (CIP) and inclusion of a critical performance element for EEO/Civil Rights responsibilities. However, the units should be complimented for their efforts in responding to work and family concerns, recognizing individuals for civil rights, some outreach & recruitment, and offering various training related to civil rights.

 

There was next to no action taken for the Management and Supervisor goal. Community Acceptance received no attention.


For those activities that were accomplished, illustrated below is a breakdown by goal where most of the effort occurred: National Office; Regions, Stations, Area & International Programs; Both; and, Neither.

 

National Office

(Washington Office Direction)

Regions, Stations, Area and International Programs

Both

Neither

* Leadership

* Work Environment

* Valuing Diversity

* Accountability

* Numerical Goals

* Outreach & Recruitment (Some)

*Work & Family

*Recognition

* Training

& Development

* Management & Supervision

* Community Assistance

 

 

 

Conclusion: Much more work needs to be done in implementing the goals and strategies identified in the Toward a Multicultural Organization Report. As indicated above, many of the activities that occurred were in response to direction coming from the Washington Office. Overall, most unit's activities were ranked low with a few scoring a little above to attain a moderate score. Not one unit received a high score for implementing a goal or related strategy. An overwhelming amount of strategies listed under each of the goals (more than 50 percent) were not acted on at all.

 

Recommendations/Suggestions:

 

o Revise the TMO Implementation Plan to concentrate on the individual 11 goals listed in the TMO Report and ways to implement.

 

z The original Plan did a "flip flop" in an effort to condense the 11 initial goals down to 6 focus areas.

3 Constant need to refer to other goals while trying to evaluate primary goal affected.

3 Some of the goals were left out under the focus areas; while others did not appear to be applicable.

3 Those goals that were applicable under the focus areas did not always identify with any of the strategies listed in the TMO Report.

 

o Provide actions that are more appropriate to the units.

 

z The TMO Implementation Plan focused on national responsibilities.

 

o Include a timeline and progress check in the revised TMO Implementation Plan.

z The units need to be monitored for progress.

o Recognize efforts made in the units for implementing TMO.

z Those who continued with TMO (and activities demonstrated this).

o Analyze this evaluation against CIP results.

z Need to determine if CIP survey results correlate with TMO evaluation concepts.

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHAPTER TWO

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


R-1 (Northern Region) - National Focus Areas

 

I. Training and Development

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop and adopt as policy a "national focus, vision, and philosophy for training and development." ( )

 

Develop national standards and skill competencies. ( )

 

Develop training modules covering such areas as: interpersonal skills, multicultural and diverse organization, supervisory, management, valuing diversity and technical training. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Valuing Diversity initiated in 1989 has been attended by the majority of the workforce. Now in its third phase, it has a cadre of 25 facilitators who train at unit sites. R-1 hosts an annual, three day event that celebrates diversity. Some forests sponsor their own annual "Diversity Day."

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Valuing Diversity: 1, 3, 4, 5 Management and Supervision: 1, 2 Outreach & Recruitment_____

 

 

 

II. Work Environment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a means to measure changes in organizational climate, culture, and individual performance. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

In January 1996, a task force of Regional Leadership Team Members met to develop a strategic direction for the region with emphasis on leadership and accountability. CIP feedback meetings were held and action plans developed.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work Environment: 1, 3 Management and Supervision: 1,2 Community Acceptance_____

 

Accountability: 2 Leadership: 1 Recognition_____

 

 


R-1 (Northern Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

III. Outreach and Recruitment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a national strategic plan for Outreach and Recruitment. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Idaho Forests, in conjunction with R-4 and Bureau of Land Management have developed the "Idaho Initiative" to recruit/mentor new minority employees. Developed 4 Access Guides which could serve as models for other Forest Service Regions. Strategy and Action Plan for Forest Service American Indian/Alaska Native Policy supports this goal.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment: 1, 3 Numerical_____ Leadership: 1 Valuing Diversity: 1

 

 

 

IV. Family Policy

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a family policy ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Developed a Regional Flexi-Place Policy in Partnership with the NFFE Council. Also a "Dependents in the Workplace Policy."

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work and the Family: 1, 2


R-1 (Northern Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

V. Standards for Accountability

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a performance element for all employees to include support for a multicultural organization and a diverse workplace. ( X )

 

Revise existing supervisory performance elements to emphasize: measuring successes in achieving workplace diversity, stimulating employee creativity and innovation and other items as described in the accountability goal. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

The Washington Office directed all R/S/A to identify a CR/EEO critical element for leaders, supervisor and mangers. All other employees have a non-critical performance element.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment_____ Numerical: 1 Leadership: 1 Valuing Diversity: 1

 

 

 

VI. Recognition

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a Chief's Award(s) recognizing multicultural achievements, community acceptance, desirable work environment, outreach and recruitment, and accommodations for people with disabilities. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Special Act/Service, Civil Rights/EEO, Public Service Awards. R-1 is the only regional program which has an established award for Civil Rights/EEO Accomplishments (as indicated in their CR Assessment).

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Recognition: 1 Community Acceptance_____ Work Environment_____

 

 

 

 

 

Note: Indicated 10 of 93 items in Plan were completed (did not specifically indicate which 10). Majority of others referred to WO.

 


R-2 (Rocky Mountain Region) - National Focus Areas

 

I. Training and Development

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop and adopt as policy a "national focus, vision, and philosophy for training and development." ( )

 

Develop national standards and skill competencies. ( )

 

Develop training modules covering such areas as: interpersonal skills, multicultural and diverse organization, supervisory, management, valuing diversity and technical training. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Valuing Diversity_____ Management and Supervision_____ Outreach & Recruitment_____

 

 

 

II. Work Environment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a means to measure changes in organizational climate, culture, and individual performance. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Employees more involved in Leadership and Civil Rights programs. Slow in CIP Action Plans, but CIP appears to be a good monitoring/evaluation/modification process. Most CIP Action Planning Meetings done by February 1997.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work Environment: 1, 3 Management and Supervision_____ Community Acceptance_____

 

Accountability_____ Leadership: 3 Recognition_____


R-2 (Rocky Mountain Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

III. Outreach and Recruitment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a national strategic plan for Outreach and Recruitment. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment_____ Numerical_____ Leadership_____ Valuing Diversity_____

 

 

 

IV. Family Policy

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a family policy. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work and the Family_____

 

 

 

 


R-2 (Rocky Mountain Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

V. Standards for Accountability

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a performance element for all employees to include support for a multicultural organization

and a diverse workplace. ( X )

 

Revise existing supervisory performance elements to emphasize: measuring successes in achieving

workplace diversity, stimulating employee creativity and innovation and other items as described in

the accountability goal. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

The Washington Office directed all R/S/A to identify a CR/EEO critical element for all leaders, supervisors and managers. All other employees have a CR/EEO non-critical performance element.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment_____ Numerical: 1 Leadership: 1 Valuing Diversity: 1

 

 

 

VI. Recognition

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a Chief's Award(s) recognizing multicultural achievements, community acceptance, desirable work environment outreach and recruitment, and accommodations for people with disabilities. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Recipient (not developer though) of the Chief's Multicultural Award (participants in the regions' activities).

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Recognition: 2 Community Acceptance_____ Work Environment_____


R-3 (Southwestern Region) - National Focus Areas

 

I. Training and Development

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop and adopt as policy a "national focus, vision, and philosophy for training and development." ( )

 

Develop national standards and skill competencies. ( )

 

Develop training modules covering such areas as: interpersonal skills, multicultural and diverse organization, supervisory, management, valuing diversity and technical training. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

None

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Valuing Diversity_____ Management and Supervision_____ Outreach & Recruitment_____

 

 

 

III. Work Environment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a means to measure changes in organizational climate, culture, and individual performance. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

TMO resulted in the formation of employee groups sanctioned by the Chief. Leads national coordination of CIP with energy and encouragement evidenced by high employee participation at meetings.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work Environment. 1, 3 Management and Supervision_____ Community Acceptance_____

 

Accountability: 3 Leadership: 1 Recognition_____


R-3 (Southwestern Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

III. Outreach and Recruitment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a national strategic plan for Outreach and Recruitment. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment_____ Numerical_____ Leadership_____ Valuing Diversity_____

 

 

 

IV. Family Policy

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a family policy. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Employees have utilized the benefits developed by the Balancing Careers and Personal Needs Initiative.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work and the Family: 1, 2

 


R-3 (Southwestern Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

V. Standards for Accountability

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a performance element for all employees to include support for a multicultural organization

and a diverse workplace. ( X )

 

Revise existing supervisory performance elements to emphasize: measuring successes in achieving

workplace diversity, stimulating employee creativity and innovation and other items as described in the accountability goal. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

The Washington Office directed all R/S/A to identify a CR/EEO critical element for leaders, supervisors and managers. All other employees have CR/EEO non-critical performance element.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

Outreach and Recruitment_____ Numerical: 1 Leadership: 1 Valuing Diversity: 1

 

 

 

VI. Recognition

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a Chief's Award(s) recognizing multicultural achievements, community acceptance, desirable work environment, outreach and recruitment, and accommodations for people with disabilities. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Recognition_____ Community Acceptance_____ Work Environment_____

 

 

 

 

 

Note: Initial implementation of TMO was at the high energy level, but lost momentum.

 

 

 


R-4 (Intermountain Region) - National Focus Areas

 

I. Training and Development

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop and adopt as policy a "national focus, vision, and philosophy for training and development." ( )

 

Develop national standards and skill competencies. ( )

 

Develop training modules covering such areas as: interpersonal skills, multicultural and diverse organization, supervisory, management valuing diversity and technical training. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Offered training in Valuing Diversity; Prevention of Sexual Harassment; EEO for Supervisor and Managers, etc.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Valuing, Diversity: 1, 3 Management and Supervision: 1 Outreach & Recruitment_____

 

 

 

II. Work Environment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a means to measure changes in organizational climate, culture, and individual performance. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Large percentage of employees participated in CIP. Action plan implementation is progressing.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work Environment: 1, 3 Management and Supervision_____ Community Acceptance_____

 

Accountability_____ Leadership_____ Recognition_____


R-4 (Intermountain Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

III. Outreach and Recruitment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

Develop a national strategic plan for Outreach and Recruitment. (X )

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

In 1992, two-day Leadership Team Meeting resulted in a final action plan which continues to be developed and reviewed. Commended by Deputy Chief's review in 1992 for "Stepping out and developing an action plan to implement TMO." Youth Resource Camp. Involvement in local schools. Take Daughters to Work Day. Career Days at School.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment: 1, 3 Numerical _____ Leadership: 1,5 Valuing Diversity_____

 

 

 

IV. Family Policy

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a family policy. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Balancing Work and Personal Needs Issues; Work at Home; Flexible Work Schedules and Dependent Care Accommodations.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work and the Family: 1, 2

 


R-4 (Intermountain Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

V. Standards for Accountability

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a performance element for all employees to include support for a multicultural organization

and a diverse workplace. ( X )

 

Revise existing supervisory performance elements to emphasize: measuring successes in achieving

workplace diversity, stimulating employee creativity and innovation and other items as described in the accountability goal. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

The Washington Office directed all R/S/A to identify a CR/EEO critical element for all leaders, supervisors and managers. All other employees have a CR/EEO non-critical performance element.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment_____ Numerical: 1 Leadership: 1, 5 Valuing Diversity: 1

 

 

 

VI. Recognition

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a Chief's Award(s) recognizing multicultural achievements, community acceptance, desirable work environment, outreach and recruitment and accommodations for people with disabilities. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Available awards include Regional Forester's Multicultural Award; National Forest Multicultural Award, Regional Office Staff Group Multicultural Award; Individual and/or Group Awards. All nominated employees receive a Certificate of Appreciation and Civil Rights Pen.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Recognition: 1, 2 Community Acceptance_____ Work Environment_____

 

 

 

 

 

Note: Problems noted about TMO: Changes in leadership; employees don't know about TMO; Lack of Accountability/Funds.

 

 

 


R-5 (Pacific Southwest Region) - National Focus Areas

 

I. Training and Development

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop and adopt as policy a "national focus, vision, and philosophy for training and development." ( )

 

Develop national standards and skill competencies. ( )

 

Develop training modules covering such areas as interpersonal skills, multicultural and diverse organization, supervisory, management, valuing diversity and technical training. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Valuing Diversity_____ Management and Supervision_____ Outreach & Recruitment_____

 

 

 

II. Work Environment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a means to measure changes in organizational climate, culture, and individual performance. (X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Most forests have completed CIP feedback sessions with some level of planning. Commencement 2000, a highly inventive and successful program, has increased the applicant pool of minorities and persons with disabilities in collaboration with other Federal agencies.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work Environment: 1, 3 Management and Supervision_____ Community Acceptance_____

 

Accountability_____ Leadership_____ Recognition_____

 


R-5 (Pacific Southwest Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

III. Outreach and Recruitment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a national strategic plan for Outreach and Recruitment. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Commencement 2000 (recruitment effort). Progress towards parity in all underrepresented groups.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment: 3 Numerical: 1 Leadership_____ Valuing Diversity_____

 

 

 

IV. Family Policy

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a family policy. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work and the Family____

 

 


R-5 (Pacific Southwest Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

V. Standards for Accountability

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a performance element for all employees to include support for a multicultural organization

and a diverse workplace. ( X )

 

Revise existing supervisory performance elements to emphasize measuring successes in achieving

workplace diversity, stimulating employee creativity and innovation and other items as described in

the accountability goal. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

The Washington Office directed all R/S/A to identify a CR/EEO critical element for all leaders, supervisors and managers. All other employees have CR/EEO non-critical performance element.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment_____ Numerical: 1 Leadership: 1 Valuing Diversity: 1

 

 

 

VI. Recognition

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a Chief's Award(s) recognizing multicultural achievements, community acceptance, desirable work environment, outreach and recruitment, and accommodations for people with disabilities. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Recognition_____ Community Acceptance_____ Work Environment_____

 

 

 

Note: Organization's culture continues to be a barrier to full implemention of the vision of TMO.


R-6 (Pacific Northwest Region) - National Focus Areas

 

I. Training and Development

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop and adopt as policy a "national focus, vision, and philosophy for training and development." ( )

 

Develop national standards and skill competencies. ( )

 

Develop training modules covering such areas as interpersonal skills, multicultural and diverse organization, supervisory, management, valuing diversity and technical training. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Valuing Diversity_____ Management and Supervision_____ Outreach & Recruitment_____

 

 

 

II. Work Environment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a means to measure changes in organizational climate, culture, and individual performance. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work Environment_____ Management and Supervision_____ Community Acceptance_____

 

Accountability_____ Leadership_____ Recognition_____

 

 


R-6 (Pacific Northwest) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

III. Outreach and Recruitment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a national strategic plan for Outreach and Recruitment. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Civil Rights Assessment Team has identified areas where civil rights activities can enhance the current work environment and prepares the Region with a cadre of diverse candidates for when they can hire and promote. Civil Rights Implementation Plan (CRIP), which is currently being updated, directs Region to be proactive in ensuring the highest level of customer service possible to all publics, National Forests guests, contractors, permittees and external partners.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment: 3 Numerical_____ Leadership: 5 Valuing Diversity_____

 

 

 

IV. Family Policy

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a family policy. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Balancing Work and Family has improved since TMO.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work and the Family: 2

 

 

 


R-6 (Pacific Northwest) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

V. Standards for Accountability

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a performance element for all employees to include support for a multicultural organization

and a diverse workplace. ( X )

 

Revise existing supervisory performance elements to emphasize: measuring successes in achieving

workplace diversity, stimulating employee creativity and innovation and other items as described in

the accountability goal. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

The Washington Office directed all R/S/A to identify a CR/EEO critical element for leadership, supervisors and managers. All other employees have a CR/EEO non-critical performance element.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment_____ Numerical: 1 Leadership: 1 Valuing diversity: 1

 

 

 

VI. Recognition

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a Chiefs Award(s) recognizing multicultural achievements, community acceptance, desirable work environment, outreach and recruitment, and accommodations for people with disabilities. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Recognition_____ Community Acceptance_____ Work Environment_____

 


R-8 (Southern Region) - National Focus Areas

 

I. Training and Development

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop and adopt as policy a "national focus, vision, and philosophy for training and development." ( )

 

Develop national standards and skill competencies. ( )

 

Develop training modules covering such areas as: interpersonal skills, multicultural and diverse organization, supervisory, management valuing diversity and technical training. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Valuing Diversity_____ Management and Supervision_____ Outreach & Recruitment_____

 

 

 

II. Work Environment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a means to measure changes in organizational climate, culture, and individual performance. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work Environment_____ Management and Supervision_____ Community Acceptance_____

 

Accountability_____ Leadership_____ Recognition_____

 

 

 

 


R-8 (Southern Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

III. Outreach and Recruitment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a national strategic plan for Outreach and Recruitment. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment: 3 Numerical_____ Leadership: 5 Valuing Diversity_____

 

 

 

IV. Family Policy

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a family policy. ( )

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work and the Family:_____

 

 


R-8 (Southern Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

V. Standards for Accountability

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a performance element for all employees to include support for a multicultural organization

and a diverse workplace. ( X )

 

Revise existing supervisory performance elements to emphasize measuring successes in achieving

workplace diversity, stimulating employee creativity and innovation and other items as described in

the accountability goal. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

The Washington Office directed all R/S/A to identify a CR/EEO critical element for all leaders, supervisor, and managers. AU other employees have a CR/EEO non-critical performance elements.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment_____ Numerical: 1 Leadership: 1 Valuing Diversity: 1

 

 

 

VI. Recognition

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a Chief's Award(s) recognizing multicultural achievements, community acceptance, desirable work environment, outreach and recruitment, and accommodations for people with disabilities. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Recognition_____ Community Acceptance_____ Work Environment_____

 

 

 

 

Note: The Region did not identify how (or what was update) as it relates to TMO goals and objectives. Three-fourths of all employees have not been actively involved with TMO. Employees feel region concentrates on employment issues rather than the work environment.

 

 


R-9 (Eastern Region) - National Focus Areas

 

I. Training and Development

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop and adopt as policy a "national focus, vision, and philosophy for training and development." ( X )

 

Develop national standards and skill competencies. ( X )

 

Develop training modules covering such areas as interpersonal skills, multicultural and diverse organization, supervisory, management, valuing diversity and technical training. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Diversity training, conducted region-wide with the train-the-trainer session. Mandatory training in Sexual Harassment Awareness was conducted on every forest. Action Plans with specific goals and objectives with measurable timelines were developed. The Plan consisted of responsibilities for supervisors and managers in all phases of the TMO Implementation Plan. "Building Bridges" was a key area critical to this process and was part of the training modules.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Valuing Diversity: 1, 4 Management and Supervision: 1 Outreach & Recruitment_____

 

 

 

II. Work Environment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a means to measure changes in organizational climate, culture, and individual performance. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

In the Action Plan, goals were established for each category with monitoring instruments to measure progress such as clearly identified strategies that identify tasks, key individual groups, and timelines to accomplish the measures in each area.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work Environment: 1, 3 Management and Supervision: 2 Community Acceptance_____

 

Accountability- Leadership: 1, 4 Recognition_____

 

 

 


R-9 (Eastern Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

III. Outreach and Recruitment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a national strategic plan for Outreach and Recruitment. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment_____ Numerical_____ Leadership_____ Valuing Diversity_____

 

 

 

IV. Family Policy

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a family policy. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work and the Family_____

 

 

 


R-9 (Eastern Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

V. Standards for Accountability

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a performance element for all employees to include support for a multicultural organization

and a diverse workplace. ( X )

 

Revise existing supervisory performance elements to emphasize measuring successes in achieving

workplace diversity, stimulating employee creativity and innovation and other items as described in

the accountability goal. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

The Washington Office directed all R/S/A to identify a CR/EEO critical element for all leaders, supervisors, and managers. All other employees have a CR/EEO non-critical performance element.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment_____ Numerical: 1 Leadership_____ Valuing Diversity_____

 

 

 

VI. Recognition

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a Chief's Award(s) recognizing multicultural achievements, community acceptance, desirable work environment, outreach and recruitment, and accommodations for people with disabilities. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Recognition_____ Community Acceptance_____ Work Environment_____

 

 

 

Note: Region indicated a Strategic Plan, but did not identify any specific actions/accomplishments in their Civil Rights Assessment

 


R-10 (Alaska Region) - National Focus Areas

 

I. Training and Development

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop and adopt as policy a "national focus, vision, and philosophy for training and development." ( )

 

Develop national standards and skill competencies. ( )

 

Develop training modules covering such areas as interpersonal skills, multicultural and diverse organization, supervisory, management, valuing diversity and technical training. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Valuing Diversity_____ Management and Supervision_____ Outreach & Recruitment_____

 

 

 

II. Work Environment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a means to measure changes in organizational climate, culture, and individual performance. (X)

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

The Alaska Regional Multicultural Organization Strategic Plan (MOSP) signed by all managers and staff directors on 12/31/91. CIP feedback sessions are in process and action plans are being formulated (no monitoring done to date).

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work Environment: 1, 2 Management and Supervision: 1 Community Acceptance_____

 

Accountability: 1 Leadership_____ Recognition_____

 


R-10 (Alaska Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

III. Outreach and Recruitment

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a national strategic plan for Outreach and Recruitment. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment_____ Numerical_____ Leadership:_____ Valuing Diversity_____

 

 

 

IV. Family Policy

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a family policy. ( )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

None

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Work and the Family:_____


R-10 (Alaska Region) - National Focus Areas (Continued)

 

V. Standards for Accountability

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a performance element for all employees to include support for a multicultural organization

and a diverse workplace. ( X )

 

Revise existing supervisory performance elements to emphasize measuring successes in achieving

workplace diversity, stimulating employee creativity and innovation and other items as described in

the accountability goal. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

The Washington Office directed all R/S/A to identify a CR/EEO critical element for all leaders, supervisors and managers. All other employees have a CR/EEO non-critical performance element.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Outreach and Recruitment_____ Numerical: 1 Leadership: 1 Valuing Diversity: 1

 

 

 

VI. Recognition

 

Actions to Implement Goals and Strategies

 

Develop a Chief's Award(s) recognizing multicultural achievements, community acceptance, desirable work environment, outreach and recruitment, and accommodations for people with disabilities. ( X )

 

Reported in Civil Rights Assessment:

 

Hector Gandara Memorial Civil Rights Award for strong commitment to Civil Rights Policy. The Ketchikan and Stikine Areas of Tongass National Forests honor employees annually.

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implemented:

 

Recognition: 1 Community Acceptance_____ Work Environment_____

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHAPTER THREE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Goals Implemented Level: Regional Forester Offices

Goals

R-1

R-2

R-3

R-4

R-5

R-6

R-8

R-9

R-10

 

Work & the Family

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy 1 - Family Policy

M

 

M

M

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy 2 - Minimum Program

L

 

L

L

 

L

 

 

 

 

Training & Development

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategey 1 - Develop Focus

M

 

 

L

 

 

 

M

 

Strategy 2 - Mgmt. Accountability

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy 3 - Competencies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy 4 - Mentoring/Support

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy 5 - Developmental

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy 6 - Standards

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Accountability

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy 1 - Critical EEO Element

 

L

 

L

L

L

L

L

L

 

Strategy 2 - Same EEO Element

L

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy 3 - Measure Progress

 

 

L

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Numerical Goals

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy 1 - Minimums Accepted

L

L

L

L

L

L

 

L

L

 

Strategy 2 - Represents Society

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy 3 - NLT Sets Example

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recognition

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy 1 - Formal Recognition

M

 

 

M

 

 

 

 

L

 

Strategy 2 - National Recognition

 

L

 

L

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Goal and Applicable Strategy # Implementation Level:

H = High (5 or more activities) ;

M = Moderate (3-4 activities and/or strong write-up);

L = Low (1-2 activities);

Blank = No Action Taken
Goals Implemented Level: Regional Forester Offices - Continued

Goals

R-1

R-2

R-3

R-4

R-5

R-6

R-8

R-9

R-10

Leadership

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy 1 - Commit to Diversity

M

L

L

L

L

L

L

L

L

Strategy 2 - HRM Decisions

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy 3 - Diversity Decisions

L

L

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy 4 - Diversity Reviews

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

L

 

Strategy 5 - Diversity Customers

 

 

 

L

 

L

L

 

 

Outreach & Recruitment

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strategy 1 - Strategic Plan

 

 

 

 

L

 

 

 

 

Strategy 2 - Diverse Candidates

L

 

 

M

 

M

 

 

 

Strategy 3 - Partnerships

L

 

 

L

L

L

L