Week 2: Developing Communication Skills

week 2

Week 2: Developing Communication Skills

In connection with the self-awareness exercise you should develop some thoughts about how to develop your communication skills. As part of the exercise, you need to identify a person (such as a roommate, a parent, a friend, or a coworker) with whom you have had a disagreement and reflect how your communication styles impacted the conversation. You will then record in your personal journal the specific ways in which you can improve your communication style to build positive interpersonal relationships.

State, Local, and Intergovernmental Relationships


  • State-local relationships
  • Intergovernmental relations at the local level

The specifics and organization for this assignment must include one of the above topics and focus on your city/county/state and contain the following:

A short description of the problem that includes an overview of the present situation in regard to the problem.
The resources and constraints (for example, social, political, or economic) in dealing with the problem.
Outline and evaluate at least two alternative approaches to resolving the issues and recommend the best course of action to solve the problem.

In any governmental activity, there will be competing interests between and among the various functions. When we refer to intergovernmental relations, it is the result of the Kastnbaum Commission discussed in our readings. The Commission’s focus was centered at the federal level. Our text suggests that as a result of those commission recommendations, there has occurred what is referred to as the unraveling of the cooperative paradigm which has led to the concept of opportunism between and among administrative activities/functions at all levels of government. In that regard, there are often competing bureaucratic subsystems as described in our readings.

For this assignment, you hold the principle administrative office, as described by Weber, in a governmental agency. This can be in a local- or state-level agency. The function that you choose could include, but is not limited to, water, sanitation, health, law enforcement, or any bureaucratic subsystem. You are currently engaged in a debate with the legislature, council/commission, or whatever policy-making board in your community or state. You have discovered that your function is not meeting the desired goals established by the legislative policy. Without more resources, the ability of your function/activity will be unable to even meet minimum standards in the delivery of the service/product. In every political subdivision, there are finite resources; improving your department’s share of those resources will require a sound argument because whatever you are successful in getting will necessarily mean some other activity will get less. Make an argument as to why your budget should be increased over another function of your choice.


Submit your answers in a double-spaced, 4- to 6-page Microsoft Word document, not counting the cover and reference pages.


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