The Public Sector Will Look Very Different in the Next Several Years

Demographic shifts will shape tomorrow’s public sector as the global population is aging, and Gen Z will make up a larger chunk of the global workforce.

Comment by Irshad Salim: Meanwhile, (according to McKinsey) hybrid and remote work arrangements and growing workforce diversity will continue to reshape demand for government services. How will these changes affect the way public sector leaders attract, retain, and develop talent in the future? By 2030, Gen Z is expected to account for about 30 percent of the global workforce.1 In Pakistan, the youth bulge is north of 50 percent, and its public sector earlier than said has to rethink how to harness demographic pressures and priorities amid ‘Quota System’ and its manifestations.

Are we going to operate as is as a massive mosaic, or take a leap of faith and transform the society into a melting pot is the billion dollar question we ought to consider.

While I characterize that we may be in a state of ‘paralysis of analysis’ and its fallout (systemic transitional fluidity) dogging us, a more informed individual calls for ‘analysis of the paralysis’ as the first step way forward.

Lest we let ourselves sit, wait and see the “house falling apart…we start anew” groupthink pull us from inertia in motion to inertia at rest.

Nevertheless, in the new article, authors explore how the public sector can keep pace with demographic trends and outline six priorities that leaders could consider as part of their talent agenda. Understand the changes ahead and strive for best-in-class talent management, the article suggests.

These priorities and suggestions are not just to be considered for a closed environment–as business organizations generally are–but in my view, some, if not most of the talking points discussed in the article overlap and extend to the open systems also–Economy, Politics and the Administration–in Pakistan to be precise.

How good fit these suggestions can be in the presence of ‘dysfunctionalism from ‘Pakistan’s perspective, and can some or all of these be opted/co-opted as part of its national and socio-economic priorities are queries that call for intense discourses on strengths not weaknesses sans polemics and chicanery albeit the culture of just power capture.

To give an overview on the situation as is on the country’s youth force, here’s an insight recently shared by renowned Pakistani scholar Dr. Adil Najam–the opportunities and challenges the ‘sunshine generation’ carry within and for the society are immense and intense:

I ask many of the sunshine generation members: “Do you want to earn money or make money?” Pat comes the answer: “Make money”. This ‘immense & intense” mindset seeks compulsive interventions for the golden mean of dollars & cents and sense & sensibilities–monetization amid intellectualization of purpose, i.e. differentiating between happiness and pleasure.