Doctoral Candidate , SCSU
The anticipated hullabaloo after the socialist party’s victory in June of 2013 was soon to be replaced by a poignant leadership crisis. As protests arose for days in front of the Prime Minister’s office, the new socialist leadership faced uncertainties while clearly failed to properly deal with a very delicate, public issue. Unquestionably, when crisis arise there is more than a sole factor causing the upheaval, in fact, in many cases there are ongoing problems intermingled with organizational, foreign or domestic policy issues.
Based on the prior experiences, the public opinion holds the belief that the Albanian governments lack insight and are not able to solve crisis situations. Therefore, the confidence in the present government is low, which might become a problem in the future as the challenges lie ahead. Generally speaking, leading and governing will never be a bed of roses; however, it does take willingness, audacity, some skills and discipline to lead a country to success. Most of all, leading is not a desire but is a duty to be accomplished.
Some of the problems that organizations generally face are the constant hurdles in the system. Systems are very fragile constructs held by the common belief that if the system works, the organization will achieve its goals, or it will disintegrate and fall into chaos if the system is defected. Chaotic movements are traits of the systems diverting out of control and usually headed in all directions, most of them unknown. In the Albanian context, even though we are able to see structures at a governmental or at a public administration level, they do not yield productivity and therefore achievability. With that being said, the system inside of these structures is not functioning properly because of the ongoing corruptive practices. The need to see reforms is imperative, and they must be deep not only in the structures, but systems as well.
Strategies that don’t work
Speaking in organizational terms, while reforms happen, they occur in a way that it is meant to improve organization health and prologue its life. The structures inside an organization are many and multilayered. Structures are as important as the systems. A solid structure is able to make the system work. Thus, without the system and the structures working in harmony, the organization stops functioning and eventually collapses. When flaws appear in the system, the downfall is inevitable unless reforms happen. The reforms are multilevel and multistep frameworks designed to make changes happen.
Speaking in practice, if a governmental or non-governmental entity feels the need to reform, it must consider all the options such as small changes in the forms of pockets of excellence, increments of change along the way, merging other organizations in one, or dividing other large entities in smaller ones, always depending on maximizing services, production and sustaining change. Keeping that in mind what types of reforms are happening in Albania as they relate to the revamping the corrupted system, it is hard to discern the way the new government is going, the mode in practices and the decision making processes.
Seen in a wider spectrum, the reforms that are currently taking place are nothing less of series of scattered actions, haphazardly taken based upon what the political situation brings. It does not exist any form of system put in place, nor discussed on how will the new government proceed with the reforming in all aspects, education, healthcare, judicial system, economy, private sector, public sector, foreign and domestic policy. If the system is not discernible, it does not exist and if it does not exist none of the reforming will be successful. In fact, it will accumulate flaws and cause problems.
The European Union, on the other hand is scrutinizing the country, the government and their decision making process, measuring improvement and pressuring for dialogue among the majority and the opposition. However, the expectations and the reforms needed to be granted the candidate status are somewhat minimal, which in this case can be interpreted as an advantage.
The ups and down are normal in a government performance, however, mixed messages can throw off the public. For example, while passing the constitutional law that prohibits the import of waste from other countries marked a milestone in setting high standards for the country, the public was thrown for a loop over the destruction of Assad’s chemical weapons inside of the Albanian territory. This type of leadership behavior is very confusing to people and can damage trust and lower the approval rate. Outraged at the government’s reluctance to deliver some form of information, the Albanian public caused uproar as the confidence plummeted even among the socialist electorate. The Albanian leadership must understand that the people of Albania should not be taken for granted.
During the electoral campaign, the socialist party laid out the platform called “Rilindja”; a packet of reformative actions aiming to deconstruct the corrupted structures and build confidence in the fight against the corruption in all levels. The program, regardless of the flaws presented a way to at least generate a minimal change in the system. Obviously, the changes can not produce positive results in a short period of time, but sporadic actions and unknown moves do not indicate a consistency or a plan of action ahead, or if there is one, the new government is struggling to follow through. All the public opinion is able to infer now is that changes are yet to come. It is hard for a politically charged public such as Albanians not to be involved in the political life of the country. There are lessons to be learned and notes to be taken; yes, there will be more protesting and good citizenship ahead, yet he government will not be able to run away. Facing the public and solving the problems has to be the preferred choice.