Local government has a problem; we talk about customers and choice but in reality we are dealing with victims and forced purchases. Would changing the way we think about how people interact with us change the way we behave towards them.
Lets be honest, people never choose to live somewhere because of the council. They live where they do because of their jobs or cost of property or because it’s where their family are. They don’t live there because the bins are purple or the logo is nice, and almost certainly they didn’t choose their house or flat because the council call centre is open 24/7.
If we accept that people are victims rather than customers of local government, we can begin to change the way we structure our services.
Let’s assume we don’t like people being victims, we immediately should focus on reducing the amount of time they are our victims, we should help them escape and get back to their non-victim existence as soon as we can.
This means we shouldn’t be forcing people to read reams and reams of documentation or trying to distract them into reading about our latest lawnmower purchase. We should basically do everything possible to get out of their way.
all this sounds obvious more more councils are doing the opposite.