Saturday, December 29, 2012

the CAO Hourglass explained

Many readers have asked about the "Hourglass " system and how it works.The diagram below makes it quite clear.All information between council and staff is routed through the CAO.The rationale for this is it keeps council from meddling with staff  .Unfortunately it also isolates council from staff and they only get the version of issues that the CAO deems fit for them to hear.No one on council spoke to Sally Mole about her dismissal and the "restructuring". They will tell you that it has nothing to do with them and is totally up to the CAO.This is the clearest example we have seen in Tofino of what is wrong with the "Hourglass" system.The concentration of power,influence and information in one individual is not healthy for the town.                                                                                                                 





49 comments:

Anonymous said...

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "the CAO Hourglass explained":

It is as clear as day that Council and Mayor had everthing to do with the dismissal of Mrs. Mole. As the diagram clearly shows Council and Mayor are at the top of the hourglass, the CAO in the middle, and staff are at the bottom. People at the top are the ones who make the decisions...always.

In this case Council would have simply had to have tabled the motion to move forward with the CAO's recomendations for the restructure, and taken a little more time to understand what it was they were doing and why. It may have been prudent to have waited for a new CAO to get a fresh perspective on the situation.

After having talked to the community (if the hourglass permits?), they could have picked the matter back up off the table and voted. They would then have had a clear vision of the purpose and structure of the "new" department and would have been able to give a more reasonable answer to their community than "well we just had nothing to do with it". They had nothing to do with one thing: understanding the issue and why it was that they were moving in such a direction.

This is simple stuff. It is simply that we don't have a expierenced CAO to guide the Aldermen through the process, and lack a strong Council and Mayor.

I appreciate the time that councillors take from their lives to do this job. I just wish they would learn to ask more questions and use some critical thought.

Anonymous said...

What a ridiculous system for a small town.Does council not understand that the CAO is primarily concern is to protect his job so all information will be filtered accordingly ? Councilors should spend a day a month with the Public Works crew to see how things are really running.Oh wait ! They would get into trouble with the HOURGLASS.What a joke

Anonymous said...

So if we have a CAO that is very intent on looking after him/herself first and foremost, we stand to lose. If we have a CAO that we can trust, that staff and council can trust and who puts the community in focus, then we're all good. Sure hope Sally put in for the CAO position! Either way, I don't like the hourglass, open communication is the way to go.

Anonymous said...

Ralph, What the diagram doesn't show is thar above mayor and council are the voters. They have very clearly been pushed aside in the same way Sally was. And yes, the CAO's primary concern was his own existance and nothing else. It's no big secret his own future was threatened with this council. Sally was his scapegoat, His smokescreen. Shame on him and shame on council for buying in!

Anonymous said...

There needs to be more checks and balances with council. Forming one's decisions with the slanted word of one individual is not good enough. There was a day at the DOT when department heads would deliver a report to council at each council meeting and be at the meeting and available for questions from council. Council got their information straght from the horse's mouth. NO BS! It's not the "hourglass", it's the censoreship board. It has to stop!

Anonymous said...

Ralph wrote:"The concentration of power,influence and information in one individual is not healthy for the town". Couldn't agree more! Council and mayor needs to make themselves much more informed. They need to get in tune with the people they work for.

Anonymous said...

From 144K to 250K.

Bullshit expands.

Anonymous said...

This was Mr.Smith's first job as a CAO.Everything he learned he learned from Bob Long.Feb. 1 2013 cannot come soon enough.Neither can the next municipal election.Rubes !!

Anonymous said...

Oh no! That model clearly shows a parks and recreation department but no resort services department. We've really screwed up royally!!

Anonymous said...

It's time for council to put the whole plan on the table. They've made a drastic change that has the town in an uproar. They seem to be confident in this change however.. So let's see it! If it's so great it must be good enough to put our peon minds to rest. What they're waiting for is to get Sally and whoever else all sealed up and gagged and my info says that ain't happening anytime soon. Happy New Year Tofitians, we start the new year knowing even less than we did last year. And with a District office in chaos with the lowest morale I've ever seen. Word is, they cancelled the Christmas party. Small wonder small minds... Progress, uh huh..

Anonymous said...

Ok.. So I don't get how they fire a longterm, well liked employee, with no notice, no opportunity to leave her job with dignity, and don't explain WHY? Where's the openess and accountability there? It's been a month for pete's sake! Though I'm not a regular for rec programs, I would always call Sally for direction on other things and she was always more than helpful. Shame on this council for losing the one who had heart with our community. You've caused a lot of unneccessary hurt here in a community that doesn't need any more hurt. Shame!

Anonymous said...

Hooray for Council for making the decision they did.
Now I'll hear the howls of protest from people blind to what wasn't being achieved. It isn't politically correct in this town or on this blog to speak the truth.

The situation that had been allowed to continue by previous councils finally came to a wake up and smell the coffee situation.

I've had my own issues with the current CAo but this time he definitely called it correctly and council heeded the message.

You could tell Parks and Rec that this or that needs to be done in their mandate and nothing, NOTHING would get done.

I believe there has been a cry for community gardens and green house n this town. I am not the only person who has noted the following and that nothing was being done about it.

We have a freaking greenhouse and a park that is used as private land in the center of town in Katie Monk's park right across from the C Loaf. The park goes from the sidewalk to within about 3 feet of the house on the next lot. Vegetable gardeners unite and take back the town. You could start your seedlings there.

Where was the leadership?

The fact nothing was done shows why the decision council made was so correct.

I could go on and on but thank you mayor, council and cao. Thank you to our wonderful town number cruncher getting us full value for our tax dollars.

Anonymous said...

The hourglass system is not about improving communication. It's about maintaining POWER & CONTROL. It was created by skilled manipulators who have never done an honest day's work in their life, but who proclaim to be in touch with the townspeople and know what's best for them. The hourglass system was implemented to serve their best interests, but not the people's.

Don't let the door hit you on the way out. And take your shitty hourglass with you when you go.






Anonymous said...

Dear 12:21,
What the hell are you talking about????????????????????????

Anonymous said...

12:21 P.M " Thank you to our wonderful town number cruncher getting us full value for our tax dollars."

What are you smoking? You call spending over 140 k per year to pay someone to run a town of 1800 people in 12.5 square miles...good value.

He may be "your' number cruncher, but not he's certainly not mine. Many other people in Tofino will agree with me. Cut the brown nosing will ya.

Anonymous said...

There's not enough sun exposure across from the common loaf for a community garden, unless you want to take out all the trees. I think a community garden on top of Lone Cone road would be ideal.

The Katie Monk's park might be a good place for a raspberry patch though.

Anonymous said...

12:21, You sound like a childish, disruntled wanna be raspberry grower. The former Parks Rec Dept. was the one feel good department at the DOT!

Anonymous said...

12:21, Are you blind or just stupid? Take a look around town at all that parks and rec has done over the years. Pretty amazing for a town this size. Parks and rec has always been highly respected in this town. ALWAYS!

Anonymous said...

2:57 PM, couldn't agree more.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
12:21, You sound like a childish, disruntled wanna be raspberry grower.

I love it!

Anonymous said...

If you want Community gardens go to Communist Cuba or North Korea.Stop looking for the taxpayer to subsidize your NDP agenda.

Ralph Tieleman said...

12:21 Thank you for your perspective. All comments appreciated. Your thoughts contradict what the Mayor has said regarding Ms. Mole's dismissal.Mayor Schmunk stated that it wasn't related to job performance or finances.

Anonymous said...

This community has supported and applauded the work of Sally Mole for 20 years. She exemplified an extraordinary work ethic and rather than being cherished as an example of commitment to the district, which reaped countless benefits as a result of her dedication, she has been recklessly disposed of. The turnover in all of the other district departments has been out-of-control for the past ten years and has generated substantial wasted wages in hiring and training for shortly held positions. What message was sent by example with her dismissal? The district places no value on job commitment, integrity, longevity, or mastery. People with these qualities ought to be considered to be precious commodities by the CAO and the council because, as we have seen, they are not easily recruited nor retained in this rural setting. There is still too much mystery about this decision. The mayor successfully quelled the crowd by suggesting Sally had options to return to the fold. I think Sally and this community deserve and need to be given nothing less than a time-lined, detailed explanation of the logic, if it truly exists, of this decision.

Anonymous said...

could it be a case of the morman vs. the bumper sticker?

Tsunami said...

6:04 P.M.

Thank-you. Very well said.

Anonymous said...

OMG. Of course... I remember Sally's famous bumper sticker - "well behaved women rarely make history". That would not have gone over well with a bunch of grey hairs and mormons.. And hello Johnna, good to see you still involved in Tofino politics!

Anonymous said...

12:21 p.m.

If I was a betting man, I'd say someone might have a hidden agenda. An extreme personal dislike for Sally perhaps. Say it ain't so.

Was it because you didn't get your pet project/ shitty garden that you're now flinging chicken manure at all of us.

Anonymous said...

Or was it " the moron" vs bumper sticker instead?

Anonymous said...

12.21 "You could tell parks and rec that this or that needs to get done and NOTHING!"
I am angry at this comment. I was on the rec commission when they did their first parks and rec master plan, which was a true community consultation. First was a new skatepark. Done. Then was a new pool. Feasability study done, not feasible. Next was a bike park and mountain bike trails. I left the community around that time but hear there is a new bike park and an awesome walking trail..! Who showed the leadership here? The community, it was the parks and rec dept that did the work.

Anonymous said...

12.21 "Thanks to our town number cruncher"
Yes, let's see the savings here! Get rid of one department head, create another, who'll need some staff, put one rec person in with Community Planning, which actually won't be enough so we have to beef that up, and oh yeah, that department head is taking on more responsibility so they need more money.. And then the lovely day/school care. They get shoved in under finance, who we all know as being so kind hearted and community minded, and now with their added responsibility, they need to be compensated. Waste of time, energy, and loss of an epic human being who really believed in our community. It's true, sometimes she was not "well behaved" but I would trust her with my life/ my kid's lives.. And I wonder if it was because she was not "well behaved" (ie spoke out of turn - the roundabout is a classic example) was the whole reason... Eff this. I'm moving to Ukee.

Anonymous said...

God bless Sixta !

Ralph Tieleman said...

Shelley and Red making a comeback bigger than Elvis in '68 !

Anonymous said...

Tofino administrators for $500 please Ralph

Ralph Tieleman said...

He was Tofino's first administrator !

Anonymous said...

Who is Larry Cruickshank ?

Ralph Tieleman said...

Well done !

Anonymous said...

Who is Charles Hamilton ?

Anonymous said...

Ian Howat

Anonymous said...

6:06 PM,It's not the Morman vs. the bumper sticker, it's moron vs. the bumper sticker! Wear it well moron!

Anonymous said...


Who is the Tofino vermin of 2012? Oh no, not him. Council scammed again ....... Happy New Year Tofino

Anonymous said...

Who was the most untrustwothy CAO since the last one? Or is it in the history of this town? Hmm? Not hard to answer.

Anonymous said...

12:21 pm, Your slant is nothing short of short sightedness. Put on some big boy panties.

Anonymous said...

Cleary council was duped by a less than reputable individual. Council asleep at the wheel?

Anonymous said...

What was his other bumper sticker? Losers rule?

Anonymous said...

The bumper sticker "Well behaved women rarely make history' quote is by a female Mormon Harvard professor, Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

Anonymous said...

Send the CAO packing sooner rather than later! Enough damage done.

Anonymous said...

the hourglass stupidity is none other than suspension of the rights of free speech including the right of access to information we pay for collecting.
enough is enough.
arbitrary highhandedness by unscupulous minds in high places.

Tsunami said...

"This is about people exercising authority it in a vain attempt to create a veneer of purpose for their pathetic lives."

Anonymous said...

the boneheads who adhere to the hourglass method of stealing peoples voices may very well be in a position to steal anything else of value.
think about it.