en English

The final event, which was held on June 14, 2016, concluded the second round of the Partnership for Change program. In addition to the exchange of ideas and experiences between employees in the private sector and government ministries, this round also brought innovative solutions to five selected challenges. Participants as well as observers of the program are excited; after successfully concluding the pilot project last year and the upgraded program this season, Partnership for Change , which was created as a cooperation program between AmCham Slovenia and the Ministry of Public Administration, is going into its third round.

Participants were solving specific challenges in public administration and the economy throughout the year, and switched their working environments for a 5-day exchange. At today’s closing event, five teams presented their solutions to challenges.

Boris Koprivnikar
, the honorary patron of the project, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Public Administration, stressed the following in his opening speech: “Partnership is a testing ground for new models of cooperation and new business models, which form the foundation for competitiveness. It has a healthy, sincere focus toward the common good. We could also call it a social experiment, which would be breaking another stereotype: namely that Slovenians don’t want to and aren’t able to work together. Ignorance reinforces stereotypes, knowledge diminishes them.”

Ajša Vodnik, MSc, Executive Director of AmCham Slovenia highlighted the following: “What we need for trust are: good intentions, as we demonstrated in the first year when we started to listen. Capabilities, which we demonstrated by addressing the challenges. And consistency, which I believe will be shown by implementing good solutions. Above all, it is important that we dare to step out of our comfort zone and leave a trace by trying something completely new, with a high degree of personal responsibility and commitment. Drop the solution and build a relationship.”

The future lies in cooperation. Today we heard five solutions that were developed by a mixed group of employees from the business sector and the public administration in response to five challenges: inter-ministerial cooperation, motivation of employees, branding Slovenia, e-public services, skills of the 21st century. Were they convincing?

What are the solutions, which are set to be implemented?

Agile teams and agile management methods are the solution for inter-ministerial cooperation. For the success of any organization it is key to have an agile organizational structure with a willingness to adapt to changes. The connecting and motivating aspects are the values: partnership, bold responsibility, playful innovation. It is necessary to establish a system of ambassadors of values and mentors within the government.

How to introduce 21st century skills to our schools? Through creating a consortium of five secondary schools across Slovenia on the basis of a successful example of the Secondary school of Economics in Ljubljana, which uses ‘design thinking’ to achieve awards at student competitions.

How to motivate the employees? ”I’m here. I want this.” Thinking and behavior, which summarizes the strategic objectives: developing leaders and a leadership culture, establishing a professional human resource manager position, establishing a culture of positive feedback and ‘coaching’, promotion on the basis of the content/quality of work and not on the basis of academic qualifications and length of service.

The challenge for e-public services is how to make them friendly and efficient for users and for the administration alike. The group addressed a life-changing event, birth. Through an animation, they presented current major administrative burdens and an innovative solution in the form of electronic public services.

Slovenia needs to be felt – how? The state should lead by example and the brand I feel Slovenia should be actively used at the governmental level. The brand must expand and address individuals. The group has already prepared several tools for use: an e-signature generator for civil servants, a guide for the use of the trademark in various situations and environments and a model generator for personalized slogans ”What do you feel”, which allows the personalization of the ”I feel Slovenia” brand.

Dr. Miro Cerar, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Slovenia, was visibly impressed by the presentations and highlighted: “Partnership for Change is actually a partnership for the right future, the future of sustainable development, the future of a better society, a society, which will see politics as partnership, cooperation, joint projects, shared vision and a common path. There are always conflicts in any society and a democratic system requires patience as well as listening to the civil society. And yet, without partnership when it comes to basic matters – if we are unable to change our thinking and habits to achieve common good – we will of course not go forward.”

“As the Prime Minister and together with other ministers, civil servants, officials and all of you citizens of the Republic of Slovenia, I will strive to ensure that Partnership for Change becomes our model for coexistence and cooperation in Slovenia, with high value content that puts people in the foreground as well as in the background. What I saw today is a proof that this is one of the most innovative and promising projects that the economy and the government are implementing together.”

Partnership for Change strengthens mutual trust, helps with overcoming stereotypes and brings optimism. In the next round, it is important to implement the solutions presented.

What were the responses from government ministers and the leading Slovene businessmen?

Tomaž Berločnik, Petrol

“The proposals are logical, we have similar projects in the private sector, but instead of inter-ministerial cooperation, we have cooperation between different workplaces/positions. I strongly support mentorship; the key is that government ministers and the Prime Minister serve as mentors too.”

Michele Leonardi, IBM

“Being reserved is a typical Slovenian personality/cultural feature, which I did not see during today’s presentations. If this continues, our future will be beautiful. “

Robert Trnovec, Microsoft

“I am glad that it has become clear that technology will not transform the educational process by itself. It is a necessary, but not a sufficient condition. Everyone’s knowledge is important – from it the leadership level to teachers and children.”

Boris Koprivnikar, Minister of Public Administration of the Republic of Slovenia

“The educational system must be configured to teach us the contents and cooperation. The system needs to be turned upside down. We must learn new ways of work and cooperation, because specific expertise quickly becomes obsolete. We have to learn how to learn, while professionalism comes with hard work. This is essential. “

Maria Anselmi, Bisnode

“With the Partnership for Change program, we are creating dreams. It is also extremely important to create harmony between the employees and the leadership, to have clear goals and expectations, and transparent communication.”

Vojmir Urlep, Lek

“I am very pleased that you emphasized the education for the leaders, as that is one of the key motivational factors, which I can confirm from my own experience. Everything starts and ends with the leader.”

Ervin Pfeifer, Avanton

“You are dealing with a topic that touches us all – childbirth. This influences the EQ, while the government can provide for the IQ. This should be the guiding principle for all public services.”

Agata Jakončič, MSD

“MSD representatives from the entire Europe are visiting Slovenia soon and I will happily share the “I feel Slovenia” brand with them, because I feel it and I am proud to be Slovene.”


5 government ministries –

Ministry of Public Administration, Government Office for Development and European Cohesion Policy, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Education, Science and Sport.

30 international and Slovenian companies –
Comtrade, MSD, Coca Cola , Siemens, IBM, Microsoft, Finance, Tajfun, Steklarna Hrastnik, AmCham Slovenija, Simobil, Halcom, Danfoss Trata, NLB, Fluidmaster, Lek , špica International, A.T. Kearney, Bisnode, Alta skladi, ZZI, SAP, KPMG, Iskratel, Petrol, PWC, Aviat, Law Firm Čad, NP Consulting in Doctrina.

67 employees.

You can see the GALLERY HERE.

You can see the highlights in the VIDEO.