tv Congressional Staff Diversity Retention CSPAN July 11, 2019 8:01am-9:31am EDT
>> i would not provide information the armed that which is already public in any it appears before congress. >> former special counsel robert moore is set to appear before two committees of congress on wednesday, july 17. at 9 a.m. eastern he gives testimony to the house judiciary committee and later at the day he will take questions from house intelligence committee, both open sessions. our coverage will be live on c-span3, online at c-span.org, or listen with the free c-span radio app. if you'd like to get a complete reading of the mueller report, listen on a free c-span radio app. volume one airs on friday and saturday at 7 p.m. eastern, and volume two will air monday and tuesday also at 7 p.m. eastern. >> next, , a hearing on recruitg and retaining congressional staffers. we will hear from human resources executives and the
author of three books about workplace topics. they testified at a hearing by the house modernization of congress committee. this is an hour and a half. >> the committee will come to order. without objection the chairs authorized to declare a recess of the committee at any time. this hearing is entitled cultivating diversity and improving contention among congressional staff. i recognize muscle fibers to give an opening statement. one of the ways in which we retain staff is by having it be 90 degrees in here. [laughing] my apologies to each of you. we'll be distributing fans to
the entire audience. today we're going to talk about what's really the backbone of this institution, and that's the congressional staff that is you. i think i speak for all of us on the dice and those yet to come, when i say we could do our jobs without the teams the people who work for us. anytime i get a compliment since is nice job on this or that, my response is always, i've got a really good team and i feel lucky for that. they are dedicated public servant who here because they want to be meaningful work, and they often choose careers on the hill and it are district offices despite the long hours and occasional lack of job security and since we work on a two-year contract and lower pay, compared to what they could make in the executive branch or the private sector. we are as an institution very fortunate to attract such talented people and hard-working people. however, keeping them here is another story.
turnover rates for house staff are really high with most positions the member offices turning over every two years or less. that isn't always a bad thing because a lot of staff leave one jump on hill for a different job on the hill but even when taken into account all the movement between different jobs, the typical staffer leesville after four or five years, and we hear believe because after time the desire to good answer the public is outweighed by the need for a better worklife balance and the need to make more money come to afford housing and support the films and put kids through college. and that puts congress at a disadvantage compared that only to the private sector but also to the executive branch and that doesn't serve the interest of the american people. congress needs to do more to not only attract the best talent but to keep the best talent and attract individuals represent the diverse backgrounds and views that exist across the country. how do we create an environment that makes staff want to stay here instead of heading for the offramp and make sure we have congress that looks like
america? i thought it would be a good idea to bring at the point person handles human resources for housestaff so they could talk about what benefits are available and then i found that the person does not exist. there literally is not an h.r. point of contact for housestaff. but we're still going to talk about benefits today. we're going to look about employee benefits then look what congress can do better. we will also look at what congress can do to recruit and retain diverse staff to reflect america. the 116th congress is the most racially and ethnically diverse congress in history, , and the congressional staff should represent the diversity of our constituent around the country. i'm looking forward to hearing what recommendations and members are committee have from proven staff retention and fostering diversity and inclusion in house, and i thank you all for you. i will invite our vice chair to share her opening remarks. >> thank you, mr. chairman. let me commend you for your
leadership and for making staff of this institution that were going to discuss today a focus of this committee. modernization doesn't just mean updating our technology and improving the legislative process. it also means insuring the people's house in test and professionally develop a dynamic workforce that reflects those we represent and does that both not only in our committees and offices but also on the house floor as well. those serving on this committee represent very unique districts. with northwest washington state, northwest georgia here represented, and our constituents have different backgrounds and unique experiences, and those who want a career in public service, are serving a different. i look forward to and from our expert witnesses today about how we can attract and retain a workforce comprised of different voices, different characteristics, experiences and skills in congress. with unemployment now in our nation at lowest rate in 51
years, i'm also also looking for to discussing how this institution can compete with the private sector. in hiring and retaining some of most talented persons in our country. that ultimately help us serve the american people better. i'm glad we are having this conversation. it's building on work this committee has already done and we could have a conversation or to learn more about best practices from those that have been helping to change the narrative and set new trends to increasing opportunity nationwide. with that i'm happy to yield back. >> i know representative cleaver expressed issue in sharing opening remarks and i'm happy to recognize and for the purpose. >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank the ranking member as well. i am extremely fascinated by the diversity of our nation, the heterogeneity, heterogeneity of the u.s. population.
i am frustrated by homogeneity in the upper ranks of our government, and to some degree even down to where we are now. and because i personally believe that there are at this moment in history only a few, you know, only a few people who would intentionally work toward exclusion, but that leaves people who are unconsciously excluding. and so that's the area that i think we can impact, and i'm looking forward to ways in which the panel can present that might help us deal in that realm. thank you, mr. chairman. i yield back. >> thanks very much. with that i think we will, would
anyone else have an opening? with that, we welcome the testimony of our three witnesses. first, dr. alexander alonso is the society for human resource management chief knowledge officer. during his career dr. alonso has worked with numerous subject matter experts worldwide with the aim of identifying performance standards, developing competency models, designing organizational assessments and conducting job analyses. also serve as a columnist analyzing trends at workforce for the industrial psychologist and h.r. magazine. i'm a subscriber. dr. alonso received his doctorate in industrial organizational psychology from florida international university. next up, is a laura liswood? is that right? laura liswood is the author of the loudest duck him about the dives into the main aspects of diversity to ensure fair and low point of working his or her way of the letter should national
recognize speaker, author and advisor and disc attribute leadership in the women's community for more than 20 years. ms. liswood is a secretary-general of the council of women world leaders which is composed of women presidents, prime ministers and heads of government, is the only organization in the world that dedicated to wince at the state and cover. shields at mba from harvard business school, a j. d. from inverse of california school of law. and then doctor kwasi mitchell is principal in deloitte consulting and government and public service practice with over 15 years of experience. today he served over 40 clients across the government and commercial practices that as a leader dr. mitchell is passionate about mentoring and helping the next generation of diversity. he serves as diversity and inclusion lead for deloitte consulting and schip in recruiting diverse talent through deloitte's first ever inclusion hiring blitz. he holds a phd in organic chemistry, is that right? in organic chemistry -- i'm sorry.
[laughing] will will -- i really don't know what that means. mba from drexel university ba from kalamazoo college. witnesses are reminded to oral testimony would be five minutes and without objection or written statements will be made part of the record and dr. alonso junot recognized for five minutes. they could wait. >> thank you. good afternoon chairman kilmer, vice chair greats interest in which members. my name is alexander alonso service chief knowledge officer at society for human resource management. as a voice for all things work, workers in the workplace, we're shaping the way for employers and employees thrive together by dancing workplace practices and maximizing human potential. as a chief knowledge officer for shrm, it is much up to examine and understand the issues faced by employees, employers and h.r. professionals on a daily basis. i deeply appreciate congress
leading by example and somehow it can reform and approve its own employment practices including benefits offerings. an important area we studied in congress most closely examine is the use of strategic benefits. h.r. departments and organizations in the significant resources in design benefits packages to recruit new employees and retain their top talent. in shrm's most recent survey 92% of the voice indicated benefits for a role in ensuring their overall job satisfaction. the results also showed a strong correlation between benefits and retention. this underscores the importance of organizations and their need to plan the strategic benefits to maximize return on investment and competitive advantage. this is especially true in congress. congressional employees often face long hours, a high stress a vibrant lower paid under private sector counterparts. under the circumstances benefits play a significant role in
employee satisfaction and retention. a study by the congressional management foundation in shrm fence and the 2% of congressional boys reported benefits influence their decisions to stay in the current positions. in today's labor market benefits offerings set organizations apart when recruiting and retaining top talent. while benefits offerings are important to congressional staff, they have just simply not kept up with the pace of private-sector benefits. moreover, they have not met the needs of our diverse and modern workforce. research shows the improvements in the landscape in the economic landscape and increasing diversity are driving organizations to refine their benefits programs. for example, there are five generations in the workforce with increasing racial and ethnic diversity across the country. this diversity shapes perspectives as far as workplace benefits, leading h.r. professionals to restructure benefit offerings to appeal to a more diverse workforce. congress should examine work and
benefits as result. in a tight labor market workforce development has become a big driver in supporting employees who want to upscale and employers who seek to maintain global competitiveness. 87% of employers report offering professional development opportunities as a benefit and 14% organizations organizations say the increase their investment in a professional film and offerings over the last year. more than 90% 90% of organizats offer paid leave of some type to their employees while 34% offer maternity leave, 30% offer maternity leave. remote work continues to be one of the most popular benefits and as a result teleworking options of all types are on the rise. with heavy workloads, long unpredictable hours, and limited time for family and friends, alternative schedules could be an attractive option for congressional staff. a growing number of employers have begun to offer student loan repayment benefits to their employees. shrm's survey shows repayment has doubled since 2018.
some congressional offices currently offer student loan repayment, , however, there is room for improvement. shrm strong supports amply provided education systems include expanding the benefits of student loan repayment. education assistance is an important tool for employers to attract the best employees and build and educated diverse workforce especially in a situation or a work in front such as this we have the best of all talent. in addition to retirement plans and health care coverage remain the cornerstones of employers provided benefits which i discussed further in my written testimony. while benefits offerings are critical to securing top talent, it is equally important congress address inclusion and diversity when discussing a modern workforce. the 116th congress is the most racially and ethnically diverse in american history as the chairman pointed out. capitol hill staff should reflect a diverse workforce representing its constituents around the country.
the employment process for capitol hill is vastly different than the private sector. congress should explore the implementation of a centralized talent management system. while also keeping an eye toward effective people manager development as an important part of a great culture. mr. chairman, and vice chair grades, thank you again for allowing me to share my experience and transixteen unimportance of benefits as well as inclusion and diversity in the workplace. congress can lead by example like a teaching the truth value of benefits and inclusion and diversity. what happens in washington, d.c. will, in fact, impact other workplaces and we at shrm truly believe that creating better workplace policies leads to better workplaces, and in turn a better world. i welcome your questions. >> thank you. thanks very much. ms. liswood, you are now recognized for five minutes. >> thank you -- >> you may have to hit the button. >> the only work through that
three times with me. [laughing] >> that's all right. >> thank you, chairman kilmer. >> you may have forgotten because the sweat -- >> that it. >> i forgot about in organic chemistry. it's all very challenging. you can restart her clock. i was doing shtick here. [laughing] >> and distinguished member of the committee, thank you very much for allowing me to testify. my name is laura liswood i think we know we sing and inclusion are keys to better decision-making, effective policy and innovation. we know also that homogeneity works only when problems are simple, , communication is easy, and the environment is not changing. you must have heterogeneity if the problems are complex, thank you medication is not easy, and the environment is changing. you must have heterogeneity. and it's about the number of
people who are diverse on your staff. we know that, attacking those numbers and hiring and retaining and fancy, i did that just about that. it's not about what i call the noah's ark approach to diversity, which is if we could only get to a beach in the art, will have our diversity. but that's a problem. we do know the value of diversity and inclusion, creativity, different perspectives, expenses, backgrounds, talents, ideas, cognitive diversity. think about your congressional baseball team. you don't want all catchers on your team. diversity and inclusion also avoids the risk of homogeneous thinking. also known as groupthink. it avoids the overreliance on dominant group members perspectives. it signals trust in institution for representing a reflection of america and connecting to community. yes, it is about race and gender and also about socioeconomics,
disability, sexual exportation, language, sports, religion, education background, family status, military status, language, nationality, and we could go on to diversity and inclusion are strategic tools to ensure better solutions. but what are some of the challenges? i mention noah's ark. the problem with that is that if the giraffe is looking at the zebra and is looking at mss your funny looking, how to do anything with that stupid short neck of yours? that's a problem. because with unconscious beliefs and perspectives and preferences and associations and roles and types about who people are. we also have the challenge of confirmation bias which is whatever it is i believe, i will sort the incoming information to confirm that which already believe. so, for example, we know from research if you have a non-anglo name you like to send out 50% more resumes to get the same response of some within anglo name. we also know if you send the same resume out with a female
name and the mailman you get different responses for that. we also know, groups are soon be confident until sugar incompetent and nondominant groups are simply incompetent until they prove their confident. we know these things. we also have what i call the elephant and mouse theory about things, which is if you're the elephant in the room what you need to know about the mouse? nemechek if you're the mouse what you need to know about the elephant? everything. by and large dominant groups are not necessarily as in tune with non-violent groups are with dominant groups. we also know like gravitational like unlike avoids not like. organizations i have worked with don't necessarily have an intake problem but they all have an upgrade problem. you may be getting diverse people into the organization come into your staff, but that may or may not be getting into the senior staff positions. we also know that homogeneous groups don't come to better solutions. they just think they did.
heterogeneous groups come to better solutions. they just don't think they did because diversity turned out to be a little more complex than homogeneity. then there's the challenge of avoiding the illusion of inclusion, which is that just because you have some programs around diversity and inclusion, it doesn't necessarily mean your organization is fair. so some of the tools i think are valuable of central human resource and diversity effort which can help overcome unconscious bias, create consistency and recruiting and developing and training, creating an office of diversity all inclusion which i know has happen, is a strong step, pay interns to avoid social economic exclusion, get referrals from minority groups, provide a clear route to advancement can understand why people leave and why they stay, learn about other representative bodies efforts on diversity through organizations like the interparliamentary union. think about i think you know the
rooney rule which is law firms committee, considering at least 30% women. lgbtq and minority lawyers for significant leader positions. creating things like a resume bank and having transparent widely available job postings is very important to attract different groups. understand that certain words when you are attracting people don't necessarily work for others. if you are looking for highly competitive ninja super warrior you may get a few people but you may be excluding a few people also. make sure the diverse voices are heard and used tools to create a level playing field. understand what i call the power of the mirror, knowing what it is you can be by who did you see. i do run a council of women said the state and government, 76 if you want to know the number, and when i talked to the present of iceland she said after should be in office for eight years, she's going around the country and she noticed that for the children
under eight they all thought only a woman could be president of iceland, and the boys had to ask if they could be president of iceland because they had never seen it. obviously most important to havg a strong and committed leadership, this is the number one requirement on the path to a more diverse and inclusive workplace. thank you for letting me testify and i welcome your questions. thank you. dr. mitchell, you are now recognized for five minutes. >> him i'm honored to have the opportunity to share deloitte's expense today. currently i serve as our chief inclusion officer for our deloitte consulting practice. at deloitte wiebe and later in diversity and inclusion since the early '90s we think of diversity as a different skills, background, attributes and perspectives that we bring to the table. for example, on one of nine
siblings raised by a single mother in the family of factory workers. i was the first member of my family to obtain a phd in organic chemistry -- [laughing] >> nailed it. >> and become a principal at a global professional servicing for. ultimately these aspects are substantially more complex than the prescript or african-american male. we have different roles, hobbies and affiliations that shape who they are and how they see the world. inclusion is leveraging all of those things which make each of us unique in a way that encourages us to be authentic,, and know that we are valued. in our experience aced upon serving clients, there are fourr distinct errors that might help you in your effort that i would like to share today. firstly, recruiting must be a top priority. we know teams with diverse backgrounds expenses are able to generate creative solutions for the most complex challenges that we face as a nation and you must extend that to the way you recruit as well.
what we do internally and one of our most successful efforts was alluded to earlier, that was our conclusion blitz. in that particular effort we had the first candidates of nontraditional background that were screened others with nontraditional background so they could obtain a view of the full potential unencumbered by potential bias. secondly, we've established and market leading approach to our people which we call inclusion counsel. these are local office groups that bring together people from different parts of the business with different backgrounds and experience. the result has been a vibrant dialogue that enabled our colleagues and professional sold more from each other, be exposed to new expenses and ways of thinking, , and shared practices on building inclusive cultures on a daily basis. this is important because this collaboration allows people in areas that are less diverse to me with those that are more
diverse, share best practice and create a common culture that benefits all. thirdly, mentorship and sponsorship are two aspects to our culture and are critical for retaining a diverse workforce. personally, my first two weeks at the firm i interacted with a partner who became a mentor, told me he thought i would be successful within the firm and that he is going to do everything within his power to help me achieve what i could potentially achieve. i have tried to pay the forward and we've established a very robust mentorship and sponsorship program that just recently, one of my initial sponsors was promoted to managing director.
it's absolutely critical to all managers going forward today and to become an industry standard,, let alone a best practice. now, , many of these transit approaches i've described are broadly applicable for improving diversity and inclusion across many organizations. i would like to discuss one thing that's particularly relevant to congress. i find more and more that strong inclusive cultures also include an element of purpose and dedication to the greater good. in fact, purpose driven work is one of the top factors that today's workforce seeking. few organizations have a strong purpose as congress.
it is important to note when it comes to diversity and inclusion there is no one-size-fits-all model. much like each of your offices in the district you represent, every organization has unique characteristics that must be taken into account how our venues like today where bess bey deserving shared our infallible to advancing the goal of diversity and inclusion, and an happy to in any way possible. thank you, chairman and vice chairman for providing this opportunity to share our experiences, , and happy to address any questions. >> thanks very much. struck the landing right at five minutes. well done. we're going to roll into question and i'll start by recognizing myself for five minutes. what to just ask you to put yourself on this committee. we have to make recommendations to the broader body around whether we talk about benefits or diversity and inclusion. put yourself in our shoes and give us some thoughts as to what
you think we ought to be recommending to improve recruitment, retention and diversity of staff in the united states house. >> i'll go ahead and start off, and argue at the same thing i would argue with any employer. from shrm's perspective we approach this as recommendations we would make to any employer-provided benefit strategy or any strategy involving workforce development or anything that has to do with retention of top talent. we would ask individuals to resurvey what it is the congressional staffers want and what it is they value. our recommendation in general it is a good starting point. when you actually get a general consensus about what it is that your workforce is looking for, whether the benefits, whether it be looking for new diversity, new inclusion programs, what have you. the other thing we would recommend is really to take a data-driven approach when thinking about what it is that is the best solution given your philosophy around talent.
if your philosophy is to retain top talent and to attract the top talent, then you're to build the systems that support that, whether it be through recruitment strategy or whether it be through recruitment tools or whether it be through talent management system as a whole. >> do others want to wait in? >> i would like to weigh in on that. from the standpoint of a very tactical aspect of diversity, i would say one of the key things that we found is in particular who screens resumes and recognizes different experience experiences. personally it's been interesting just watching as much is lost when people screening resumes that a different backgrounds than a person who is applying for a position. so from a very tactical standpoint, having a more focused perspective on how resumes are screened and shared across different opportunities is absolutely key.
>> i would also add an addition to what was being said there,, that when you do interviews with potential staff members, that the interviewers are diverse themselves, not to ensure that you're getting a wider range of questions. with reference to job descriptions, i would recommend you perhaps get some people here who have companies that do this kind of algorithm work that can help you think about how you create job descriptions so that they don't advantage in some groups and disadvantage of the groups. to reaffirm what was said, making sure you have databases, making sure that you metrics and accountability for all of your efforts. >> dr. alonso, you mentioned in your written testimony and spoke briefly about employee benefits including things like not come
into the office, maybe working remotely or maternity and paternity leave. can you talk about some of the things that might fit under the category of creative benefits that we ought to be thinking about that might maybe not the budget busters but might positively impact the ability of people to feel valued and stick around? >> absolutely. i think the number one benefit that we see that is something that we consider to be an attractor or something that causes someone to retain his professional development and investment in professional development. when you think about a highly skilled and talented workforce, it's the opportunity to engage in a variety of different professional the filament opportunities. some that are more geared towards career rather than the actual benefits or rather than the actual business that one is in really has a real impact in terms of making sure your retaining top talent. when i think specific about your
question, what i will report to his professional development opportunities and some that are well outside the scope of what you might think whether it be in data analytics, whether it be in and coding, whether it be in a variety of other settings or other skill sets. >> him why don't i move on to ve chair graves for five and his friend ask questions? much as i want to ask dr. mitchell about compounds that don't include carbon hydrogen bombs. vice chair graves. >> got to love google. [laughing] >> i i wanted to just undertakea second and maybe expand on an idea that ms. liz what brought up, and you reference an h.r. department. you've recognize i think all three of you have 435 unique
operating entities with unique budgets and when you talk about staff retention, that also impacts us making hiring decisions. so you have maybe a person who is accustomed to hiring decisions and evaluate resumes in a certain way and creating a certain work environment within office, make change as well and then you going back to the process again. maybe you can help us understand, is it possible to have one unique h.r. department that assists all 435 offices? is that possible in this institution, or do we need to learn how to train or teach 435 unique entities how to do this? ms. liswood, you brought it up. i'm really intrigued by that idea. >> i think certainly centralized entity can assist in the 435 businesses that you have.
in other words, they can be the ones who identify the best practices. they can bring expert in to help. they can perhaps to diversity audits for your office to help you see what it is that you may need to think about. they could potentially help you think about, i mentioned what pools your fishing from an expand the number of polls. so you can get some consistency across the 435, and with the understand each office is going to have its own particular perspective on what it wants and what it needs, but to help ensure you are not doing unconscious bias kinds of things as we discussed. to give you those tools to improve that which are already trying to do. >> thank you. dr. mitchell, any -- >> i would encourage you and you think about that, especially since the rooney rule with brought up as well, , you can he an office that acts as a referee
to provide guidance that is used individually across the entire body. or going back to chemistry reference you can of the body that acts as as a catalyst to fundamental changes everything is done. i think of starting as a referee is a good initial step forward that can provide some consistency and start to move you along that particular path to see how much additional change is needed. that can be a lightweight solution that you put in place. >> any thoughts, dr. alonso? >> i meant organizational psychologist by trees to my natural tendency is to say it depends. the answer always is it depends. what i will say is in the seat i think it is exactly as my colleagues have described, a possibility, songs we consider there is a need for really one thing and that's to set a foundation for flexible so each of the 435 offices can really deliver the philosophy and the strategy as far as recruitment, retention they want.
when i think of this i think the setting a foundational set of rules or roles i should say that relate specifically to centralized h.r. function but that only enable or allow or unlock the ability to unleash potential. >> that's really helpful and i hope the committee thinks about this more, because in a political fight with of us are, obtained this position to an election and oftentimes when that happens the person that leaves your office, comes from your campaign potential and may not have much if any experience as it relates to establishing aa new office that has a multimillion dollar budget, up to 20 employees or so. and then there's the challenge and if you've if you have any n this it would be helpful, is that you have your district office and staff and jugular d.c. office staff, to come that
are sometimes very different, obviously very different roles but they come from different hiring schools as well and could a single h.r. department as centralized to be able to accomplish both of those tasks? had he given any thought to that yet? >> i'm thinking they could be a resource for you to help you identify what organizations might be useful for you in your district, for example, to find more diverse candidates or to post for jobs. i can see that as certainly a value for something like this centralized group. yes, you have this kind of disparities between d.c. and your particular -- on you and i would encourage thinking about diversity as a much broader sense of what diversity is. because you are looking for who's going to give me the
different perspectives i need? whose worldview is different than my worldview? who's going to ask questions that perhaps we can get asked otherwise? that's part of the mix of who you want in your organization. i think i centralized group can help you get to that goal. >> thank you. i no time has expired but thanks for interjecting release unique idea. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you. mr. cleaver. >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you for being here today my son is an actor, and the reason is getting a lot of work now is that the new rules governed by the actors guild, and the reason you see so much diversity in commercials is that they are not allowed now to select people for roles that are
not primarily based on personality. in other words, you don't need to get anybody to play michael jordan. nobody is going to do that. but if you need a man and a woman, they are not allowed to say we want two white, a white man and a white woman. they just had to get two people. if they start doing otherwise they are violating contracts. and so if you notice, just watch the commercials that they're coming at now. a few years ago that never would've happened. the other thing that i'd like for you, because it connects, i thought about an office of inclusion and diversity, inclusion and retention. under the auspices of house houe administration. and they collect resumes of
individuals from all over the country. one thing you have to do, the civil rights laws allow for us to hire -- fiddle so you can't discriminate so you have to hire an atheist. you know, you can hire a methodist if you're a a cathol. you can hire catholics. what you can't do is say i wanted black catholic or a latino episcopalian. so this office would have all of them and you could obviously if you're a democrat you can set what a democratic legislative director. this would be the central place where it would take place, race-neutral, gender-neutral. you just, you ask them they send it out, here are ten people that fit what you have asked for. the only thing that i haven't
worked through them in my is most people would know a woman to name from a man's name. we can press -- pass a lot everybody must be named george. i'm interested in you during that up, repairing get and suggesting something that you think might be helpful. any of you. >> i'm happy to start. i think the notion that you have spoken up of a a centralized office that would hold resumes and be able to extend the reach of the candidates the unspecific offices like core contacts and they needed networks is deathly something that would be, seems a reasonable. i have in my experience done both resume reviews that are blind, you know, without particular names, and also those with names. and more or less when you have
standard recruiters who have been trained in things such as unconscious bias, , have not no substantial difference between the two. that's just one piece that i would often view is that that might be a step, i think the training of the people who are interviewing and screen resumes and understand the background may, in fact, be sufficient. >> i would add that come in terms of resume reviews specific and think about how you go about reviewing resumes, it is much more powerful not just to focus on unconscious bias training and frame of reference training but also to focus on what is the people mentors and the people who are hiring managers make decisions around when reviewing resumes. it's not enough to focus on the central a screening of reviews. it's much more powerful to focus on what those hiring managers are looking to do, reviewed the committee cases that is a much more powerful than the initial screen. >> i might also add that besides the blind resume technique,
there's also no something known as bunching theory, which is if you bring a group of resumes together, you are more likely to appoint a disparate group of people rather than just one resume at a time. echoes exactly what you're talking about. it's also, it's a training issue to make sure when you are streaming you are not screening for a cultural fit because that's a term that can be used to exclude people. >> thank you. thank you, mr. chairman. >> mr. woodall. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i can't help but notice were spent a lot of time talking about recruiting talented staff and retain talented staff. there's no been discussion about talented congressman. i say that partially tongue-in-cheek. my question is, is give me a parallel to what it is we do appear in our 435 jobs.
i could be completely without talent and get elected, and i've got caught and 515. i've got to find to keep not that the just knows how to check the four corners of the box. to find a team that believes in me, and that's going to create a whole bunch of bias for who believes in me. then i have to find folks who have a different level of trust and commitment in that. easy to find folks who believe in the book. hard to find someone who believes in the new freshman congressman and that wasn't supposed to when to begin with. six and 45 miles away in washington, d.c. what is the parallel? rather than asking you to commit all the answers, who's got a similar situation to us in congress and they're already doing it well today? >> so i've actually given this some thought, and the closest parallel i can think of it come from the private sector is the healthcare industry and especially the industry involved with physicians and residents in
general. or residency programs in general. you have the unique situation of the summer talk about the top talent in their particular field, talking about individuals that apple together an office in many cases as far as private practice with it be within the healthcare system for outside healthcare system, and have to engage in auto ownership and leadership. with almost no training in it whatsoever. when nothing specific about how they're going about that, much of what that industry is doing is looking specifically at how they build those types of training programs through a centralized system like the association for american medical colleges and efforts to refocus on how they train and build better physicians not just better physicians, better leaders. that's where i would turn to first if i was to think about i it. >> the only extension i would say to that, because i completely agree, is that you can look and instances that a partnership structures, right?
at its core. if you have institutions that a partnership structures or your people who have made partner based upon a set of skills and now must be leaders and business owners. it's analogous. >> now you have me wondering if i i goes to look at deloitte partners, i'll see a different group of young people who are attracted to your mint tea and folks attracted to the less ambitious partner down the hall from you. tell me, think about diverse, if i look down the road i see a lot of ethnic diversity or icy gender diversity i don't think a lot of age diversity. gray hair is not a, spike to particularly and personal offices. in the industry are we ranking diversity? you talk about noah's ark. which is going to get two everybody here. is there come if i'm trying to do better at edge and lovely folks are trying to do better. is there a hierarchy? will do better with race and ad
this socioeconomics second, then the better with age. is there a measuring stick for success? >> i'll jump in here, congressman woodall. there is no measuring stick or ranking, if you will. i think what we've seen is there's a strong emphasis on compliance. when thinking about complies there are certain characteristics that are regulated and require us to become point. i think what we see though is that as an industry, especially in private sector, we are seeing a great movement towards more than just visual diversity. in other words, where is the diversity that exists? isn't that easily readily available? was seeing a lot of that especially as it relates to new technologies like artificial intelligence and biases that enter artificial intelligence. >> ms. liswood said in testimony it sickens me things going a desire to embrace america. i worry we will create a compliance culture as opposed to
create a performance culture that shows we trying to embrace inclusion to reflect america. let me ask the final question, advance burnout is my biggest retention challenge the folks get this job everything because they so believe in it. we talked about family medical leave, talk about parental leave. we don't talk a lot about sabbatical leave. i can't sell it to my constituents back home, but that is my problem. i want people who give it everything and then by definition need to take care of themselves more in ways that deloitte might not ask that same think of. do i have an analogous burnout retention model i can look to? >> certainly some industries do much the same thing. let's say financial services industries or even consulting firms. you are working 24/7, if you will. some organizations have developed these kinds of offramp on-ramp kinds of approaches to
get. in the offramp on-ramp for example, some organizations they've developed what they call return ship programs which are namely directed towards women have taken family issues but also for men. it allows them to step off that stay connected with the organization, step up in court with what's going on but step off for a bit and then come back to the organization. that might be a practice that might be of interest. >> thank you all very much. >> thank you here mr. pocan. >> thank you. thanks for being you. let me talk about compensation because that's i think people assume. however in this case i think it really is an issue. this is a crazy, expensive counter people have started out low 30s, medium one-bedroom apartment, take that entire gross salary would cover one-bedroom, not paying taxes competing, doing anything else. when i first got elected when i skip and i came appear for a fundraiser for another colleague, a young professional
group that was there. about 100 people and a couple group of people is talking to come to explain to me how well as when you makes more than a member of congress. because they all worked on the outside as a fund-raising sort of group and that's a reality with a lot of outside groups that can hurt people away at higher salaries, salaries here for either most senior folks are tied to our salaries. they can't exceed our salaries by rule or on the outside those groups don't have that limit. this year we got a 1% increase. pretty hard to divide that up and make it work for people. i know there's a lot of other factors in regaining folks and you're brought up a lot of those, but just raw compensation. can we talk about that a little bit and get a a little idea of your thoughts? >> certainly our position has been compensable factors need to get account for them and would look at the sides, , what really stands out is fair evaluation of compensable factors. in my mind, the natural
recommendation i i would make o any employer when trying to be competitive is to take specific about what others compensable factors and how you counteract that. total compensation is broader. includes benefits when you think about this from h.r. perspective. it doesn't just stop at true compensation or pay or wages. what i would argue is critical, having a fair assessment of what is compensable in some way and now those factors play a role. match that specifically to the skill sets and the roles and responsibilities that one might have in their specific role. whether not that actually happens and what are not there's a true blue classification system that fits that, certainly that's something that a centralized h.r. function could take up. >> anyone else want to address the issue? >> just speaking frankly, my -- and this is at the end of my
comments as well, just with respect to, there's aspects of compensation that will always be there. and what i do and what was recorded as an organization is talk about mission. for example, i have a number of practitioners to work for me now it will, in fact, be leaving the firm to go work on campaigns. it's less than compensation. there are people of been willing to make the sacrifices because they believe encumbrance and to believe in what you do. >> i think people when you look at the research, yes, compensation is absolutely criteria. you can't avoid that. but in addition to that you could have the greatest amount of compensation, you could be paying people and according about the money, but if they are not seen personal growth, , if they are not seen -- if they are seeing themselves being excluded potentially, they don't see stretch assignments been given to them, if they're not being
mentor or sponsored, , you get y point. people will leave even in states of very good compensation. i think it is a a balance. it is a mix. it is a challenge. i don't think anyone will deny you that as a point but i think there are other ingredients that can be put to play. >> we also give people crazy long hours, too. just an added benefit within the job. often i think most people who seem to have an entry path into our office become interest because the get exposure. they need people, many people i talk to, that's how you started but, of course, it's been unpaid until now. now we have a small amount but it's a pittance is really what we have right now so we're doing a base of financial need that we ask people to fill something out that we are still underpaying vincent ms. lee. can since it does seem to be the most common intake facility, how we could maybe address that part of compensation?
>> you're the expert in this area. >> again, i would point to what it is that we want to compensate and how we go about compensating it, and what is truly value. we talk about intrinsic motivators and what drives engagement versus what are extrinsic motivators. in mind i like specifically the compensation what that starting conversation might be an say, how to offset that if it's not something that we are necessary happy with? and find ways to hit that motivational sweet spot. >> thank you. >> ms. brooks. >> thank you all and thank you for being you. i have several categories i like to cover quickly. dr. alonso, you spoke about a talent management system and our philosophy about a talent management system. could you please give us an idea of what that might look like here? very briefly.
>> when i think about talent management systems what i'm look at is how do we train based or develop our resources, human resources based upon competency-based system. how do we give them the skills they need today as well as the skills they need in the future? how do we develop a central assistant so there's learning development and people manager development across the board? pacifica with people managers, how is it we develop them so they are able to lead from day one? >> is that something you could see us doing and 435 different offices, or with that require some centralized place, it sounds like? >> i can see see a scenario wht would be centralized what i could also see a scenario where you could done at 435 different businesses, as long as you set one common core standards. >> thank you. dr. mitchell, we've heard about the importance of benefits and recruiting and retaining staff
but also know that we often focus on the student loan repayments and the student debt that is accumulating, challenges that many young people have even going to college. candy chocolate any programs you know with with the benefit of tuition payment upfront, because i used to be at a community college system and sometimes or even getting companies to invest in their employees come sometimes we would try to get them to do the tuition upfront rather than the benefit after because the individuals that get the funds to start with. any comments or programs you know about with respect to tuition payment upfront and then retention afterwards when you invest in that employee or student? whether or not that's anything you can envision here. >> a slight deviation from that, what is common in the number of distinct areas has been tuition reimbursement as people are taking the courses in of themselves. >> right, reimbursement.
>> which is relatively typical, but yes, that does involve people taking out loans, , but they're able to pay those loans back pretty really depend on what different employers are doing. it's becoming more and more common with respect to consultancies and, in fact, it's becoming more and more common for consultancies to advance those famous for the and for the upfront. >> and have you found in whether shrm, is a working? is it helping with excellent staff retention? >> i definitely it is helping with retention, right, because particularly you are allowing your workforce of the talked about a few minutes ago to develop new skills and see a path for them going forward and feeling the investment you're making them. >> is a talking with recruiting? you have an opinion, dr. alonso? >> it's just not something that is common enough to have real beat on what the trend is. what i would say is there is definite evidence from anecdotal perspective perspective that speaks to the fact it is helping retention and
serving as some measure of recruitment bonus, if you will. i do think there's also some value as far as it relates to the employer in terms of being able to lock in resettable approaches to retaining their top talent. >> ms. liswood, i'd like to ask for a briefly about mentoring programs. you may or may not know that here we have rented the women's congressional policy institute and girls inc. brought 21 21 gs this year. i participated in taking her daughters to work. so kaylee from indianapolis came and sat with me in hearings and throughout the day, and she asked spectacular questions and i think got excited. she of course, she would like to maybe the president of the united states one day. this is kaylee from indianapolis. can you talk to me a little bit about have these types of exposure mentoring programs and what more we could be doing? on 21 girls came, and because girls inc. of indianapolis paid,
i don't know if they paid for her or if her parents or mother paid for her or father, but how do we get more young people to contemplate life here, if they do not have the opportunity to come here? >> what you gave was an extraordinary experience for these 21 women. >> she was amazing. >> i'm sure she was. .. to create more mentoring programs, perhaps giving i remember inprematur to them. i want to make a point pr the
work out of nci where they have discovered for corporations that women are undermentored and oversponsored. >> would you like to quickly define that for us briefly even though my time is up. >> mentoring is providing the ideas and interaction. sponsoring is basically i'm going to sign the check that you should take-- that i'm going to back you in a position. you know, i'm going to be the one who endorses you to take that other position. i say we have to put mary in there and i can guarantee that mary is going to be successful, a guarantee program, if you will, it's very different. mentoring is more like or not like potentially and sponsoring is like to like. >> thank you, i yield back. >> thank you. >> here we go. thank you for holding thissen
thank you to the panel. for the past 15 i've been including in diversity in the legal profession with the philadelphia legal association and bar that i used to be with. i'm looking at what might translate. one of the big ones was that leadership had to come-- leadership had to be fully on board, that if it was just talk or just words, they had to walk the walk. dr. mitchell, can you speak to how that might translate here? >> i think that the statement that you made is unquestionably correct, right? and particularly when you think about millennials in the work force, they sense absence of leadership or empty words very, very quickly and immediately decide to do other things. what we've done internally, takely from the standpoint of
making sure that leadership walks to walk is transform to diversity and inclusion activities, focused on mentoring people who look different than or have different backgrounds than yourself and a variety of other things, so, to make sure that you're doing more than just that empty talk, i think we need to come to accountability, such as performance, and evaluation. it becomes much, much more deliberate. so that leads to my next question, how do you measure success? what kind of metrics might we employ here. i'm new, but there's been resistance to a lot of measuring. so what kind of metrics might we look at? i like the one you just mentioned, actually demonstrated mentoring with people who do not look like yourself or have different backgrounds. >> so i would actually like to address this question in large part because i think one what
dr. mitchell cited was a valuable point. it's incontrovertible. the leadership has to be involved in the mission of diversity. and what we've zone is the rise of diversity officers and diversity offices as a whole. one of the things we like to highlight, ultimately it's your executive leader and leadership that actually drives diversity and inclusion. so when thinking about what it is that what one should look for, it's that leader, that ceo, that president who is going to be your chief inclusion officer. relegating to one office is not effective. when it's metrics i look specifically not just at what kind of candidates you attract, but i would also recommend looking at what kind of youth-- usage rates there are around professional development. what is it that you're seeing that is a usage rate based upon
various diversity characteristics that make it clear that you have an inclusive environment and that people are using all the professional development available to them. >> okay. if i could add. >> yeah, sure. >> obviously, top leadership is most important around this, and they have to actually behave. they have to, you know, they can't just say they're for diversity and then look at their direct report and you see something that doesn't look like that. they also need to ensure that their team, that their staff also is diverse so going down the organizational hierarchy, and for senior leadership to ask the right questions, be kind of the if not, why not questions. i didn't see any women on this slate as an example. why not? come back to me when you have a more diverse slate. i also think it's important for the senior leadership and the top leaders to keep on top of what is the current research around diversity and inclusion
and say, does this apply to our organization? but it might give you one example around that, some research around performance evaluations, and done by 250 companies. 65% of women, senior women's performance evaluations have some negative comments about their communication style. sharp elbows, whatever. 2% of the men's communications styles were evacuated in that way. what i would say to the ceo if it had that information, i want to know what my company looks like with that kind of data. are we better than that? are we worse than that? so, having a very curious ceo, i think, is extraordinarily important in this area. >> of course, we've got an issue where we have multiple ceo's, but i guess i would urge, yes, each office, but then some kind of leadership above that looking at that, which leads me to another tactic that seemed to work pretty well in the law firm
environment which might be that we have competitive individuals here, so if we have recognition for people doing the right thing, does that help? >> we certainly found that appreciation and recognition as a whole are a valuable tool when trying to create an inclusive culture. >> or the reverse being shame. >> and also, to make it clear, to a particular-- or potential staff members where they would like to go and who they would like to work with. we've seen that to be very, very key as well. >> thank you, i yield back. >> thanks. i'm going to invite any of the members of the committee who have more questions to dive in. i've got a few. so congress is a little bit unique than a lot of agencies in the federal government that use the gs scale, right, where you have a specific job title with a certain job description, someone may be able to either work their way up into jobs that have different
expectations and then also from a tenure standpoint, pay and benefits often improve over time. congress doesn't do that. i want to get your reaction to whether that's a good thing, bad thing, just a thing? >> something we should be looking at, not looking at? >> it all depends on how you want to use or employ that particular type of system. i would argue that when i advised employers, or when i speak to federal agencies about this topic, whether it be formally in the late 2000's, the nsps system or should we compensate based on pay for performance or some factors like that. i think it all speaks to what is your intended goal and your intended purpose. if you think it will, in fact, help a retention issue or support a retention issue or help someone be a better manager of congressional staff as they cycle in and out,
certainly, that is a reason to follow that, but you know, an estimation one way or the ear as to where it fits, all depends on what the intended purpose really is. >> anyone else want to weigh in on that? or not really? okay. i wanted to get your impression on the idea of an hr department or at least an hr kind of point of-- lead point of contact within the congress. your thoughts on that and the types-- you know, it seems like the types of functions that could be done should such an office exist would be things like maintaining a resume' bank and sharing best practices on, you know, on everything. and from diversity to retention with the 435 independent contractors who work here or even, you know, mr. hoyer when he came on memorial day
testified around offering certifications or compliance certificates on ada accessibility to goldstar for being a veterans hiring office or what have you, to, you know, being a central repository for collecting some of this information around how we're doing. i've been struck by, it's hard to actually figure out how to make improvements when we don't have great information on benchmarks. >> thoughts on any of what i just said, reactions, what's good, bad, ugly? >> go ahead. >> could i add onto that? we've been toying with the idea of having some kind of tool kit available to members, so, with best practices, but here is where you could go and having a package to hand to people, if you can add that into the mix. >> i would nt be a good consultant if i wasn't for
centralized that comes with tool kits. but i think more so than anything else, i think is being able to do some of these things at scale and share best practices which i think is really key to make forward progress. >> i think for many organizations, let's pretend it was an organization that had 435 divisions to it. they would potentially look at each of the divisions and their success or their failure and say, okay, why, why is this particular entity doing so well? you know? what is it that we can learn from, to bring the others up? you know, obviously, you can look at why the ones aren't doing well and do some audits around that, but i think one of the benefits of having so many different business units is that you have this opportunity. yes, giving people a tool kit, but who is implementing it and who is implementing it well and that's what a central group could help you do. >> at the end of the day, i think a central group would be someone that could help unleash potential for the various 435 offices.
i don't think of them as someone who is going to regulate or mandate or anything like that, but i think of them as someone who will help track the trends, help you assess how well you're doing and at the same time help you institute a culture you're thinking, have better people managers, managers who have the difficult conversations which are the hardest part when dealing with employees and employer relations. it's really a resource to the 435 offices as we're describing it. >> very good. miss brooks, you had-- >> the doctor started out mentioning and i found it interesting. you mentioned five generations in the workplace. could you quickly kind of for the record at this point in time, what are those five generations very briefly and what are the challenges we ought to be -- and we ought to be thinking about? because we have multi-generations of members. we have-- but i think it's less so in the work force, quite frankly, for the most part. so, and what is it that we
either can or could be recommending as a body, as to how we deal with that? >> so, i do not pretend to be a generational researcher by any stretch. i will look at what we've done from the census bureau, when we think about this, 1% of the work force, people who were the greatest generation if you were to think of them. and then baby boomers, 6 to 7% of the work force, gen x'ers. >> how much? >> 6 to 7%? >> yes. >> some of us are working too hard. really? only 6 to 7? >> 6 to 7. >> okay. >> then about 30% of the work force that's gen x. >> okay. >> 32% that's gen-- excuse me millennials. >> okay. >> and the rest coming up, the gen z or the i-generation, if you will by i-generation, those
born with an iphone in their hand. >> okay. [laughter] >> what we see is that-- >> there's some of them here, a few. >> i have a few at home. >> okay. with that in mind, what we see is really an opportunity to customize the employment experience for those individuals. it's not about dealing with differences amongst the generations, but rather, how do you customize the employment experience so that you foster better communication, depending upon the generational realities, if you will. i think the other piece that we see, hr professionals as a whole, really focusing on, how do we tailor, what it is that we offer from, whether it be benefits, compensation, what have you, jobs, to really fit the skillsets that best suit our diverse work force. >> thank you, and i assume there are plenty of-- anyone else want to comment or know more that you'd like to share about the generations piece of hr? >> if i could share the
unconscious bias part around that. >> okay. >> it's what the-- you know, the senior people really think about the more junior people, or what the more junior people think about the more senior people and to your point, congressman woodall what they think about the other people and vice versa and that will permeate into how you interview people, you know, who the candidates are that you potentially choose. it's based on the unconscious belief about who people are in the different generations. you can have the different generations, but if i think this particular generation is entitled and impatient and this generation doesn't know thinking about technology i'm going to embed those things in my own head and distinguish how i think about people. so that's a little bit more of a psychological element to this generational issue. >> anything, dr. mitchell? >> no. >> okay. >> i think that's actually a bigger issue here than we might
appreciate and want to admit. i think it's in every workplace, i didn't realize we're up to five. i'm slowing down in 18 months, i'm going to join. no, thank you. yield back. >> very good. mr. wood-all? >> two quick questions about folks gear themselves towards compliance, i have a real fear, which is easy for us to try to start checking boxes around here because we all want to be successful. has anybody modeled the-- you don't, we're not going to check five boxes, but we want you to get two out of three here, two out of three here, two out of three here, i'm thinking of married, single, you can have different opinions on tax policy than otherwise, urban, rural, you're going to have different opinions, south, east, west, military service, no military service, single parent, the list is infinite and i need all of those opinions. i don't think of the folks in my staff necessarily as the
deliverers of those opinions. i'm going to call the c.d.c. for demograph inc. -- demographic information. is there a checklist-- isn't a checklist, but try to get three out of 10 that recognizes if we start listing diversity that that list goes on forever? if you're going back to my yard stick question about i want to do a good job, but i can't-- i can't tell how to measure success. >> i have not seen a checklist or a yard stick that would get exactly what you're targeting because so much of it is dependent upon what the ultimate outcomes are that you're driving for and in many respects, i think that pushing towards cognitive diversity is much more critical, rather than trying to check that i have a
black male on the staff, you know, on your staff. so i do think that there are nuances there, depending upon your outcome. but i don't think that, in my experience, that's seen an overabundance of compliance culture in the organizations that i've worked with. >> is neuro diversity the same as cognitive diversity? what is neuro diversity? >> plies correct me if i'm wrong with the ph.d.'s on both sides of me here, is more like are you an introvert, are you an extra extrovert. what's people's world view that they're bringing to you so you don't make a division that missed out on a huge issue that you should have known about. >> and what i'd add to that is diversity around what your skill sets are and experience. so, for instance, for many years we've seen research around biodata as an example or biographical data that sets
apart different information, experiences that individuals have had that helped enhance your diversity or your inclusion. that's not to say that we're looking for specifically one who is black, but as someone who has enforcement as law enforcement or experience as a pilot, say, or something like that. that leads to different experiences and different diversity, if you will. >> thinking about retention, we are of two minds here. are our staff exceptional and different or our staff just like every other federal employee? 1995, the passed the congressional accountability act. and in 2010 we kicked the federal employees, the congressional employees out of the federal health care system and said no, you have to go into a separate health care system because you happen to work for congress. is there a concensus as it
comes to retention whether mimicking what the rest of the federal government does and being, what word did you use earlier, dr. mitchell, rigorous, not top down, but you said as a consultant, i have to support a centralized process. thank you, thank you, thank you. opm has such a centralized process and i could certainly turn to them. my natural bias is to say, no, we're doing something special here. that's why we're article one and not article two. we will have a different set of rules here to achieve our in's. is it when replicating what the rest of the federal government does, providing for some exclusivity on capitol hill? >> i would not say that there is concensus. i would argue that it has to suit what your strategic objectives are and what you're looking for as an organization
and as the house. >> but so right now, that situation in terms of employee health care, is they're all required to be on the d.c. exchange, including the staff in our district offices, which, you know, if you're from washington state, providing coverage under that, is challenging and maybe challenging in georgia, too. do you have a perspective whether that's a good idea or a bad idea? >> i'll wade into this one a little bit. what i would argue, the same-- keeping in mind my experience is predominantlily the sector, every employ are, a collect of 335 employers or a broader collection of those, what i'd argue, you need to look at what it is that best suits the needs of your employee, so it starts with surveying congressional staff to see how you build the best possible package for them. seeing what is recommended for
private sector employers. ask them what are the best brokered benefits for them and the best solution given their streak spending in this area and what it is that they have allotted to them as an organization from a financial resource perspective. >> just spit bawling here for the sake of discussions, given options, if you come work in a congressional option, you have the option of being on the federal health plan that every employee is on or there may be some districts where they don't have enough providers that are covered under the georgia exchange or there may not be a georgia exchange. or an option of being on the state exchange. and so, that type of situation where you could give them an option. does that-- any reaction to that? does that seem-- that sounds reasonable or you're bonkers, kilmer? >> i would never say that
you're bonkers. >> thank you, dr. mitchell. >> but i will tell you that that's beyond my area of expertise and i could connect with your staff on that. >> it's very difficult to know why people leave, truly know why people leave. some research show when people leave they say i'm going for a higher paying job and when they interview people, one left for the a higher paying job, one third left for the same paying job and one left for a lower paying job. >> probing why people leave, it may not be an option problem or it may be. unless you do that and create those exit interviews that allow you to really understand the dynamics of what he is going on, i think you're spitballing, to use your term, sir. >> if you all would think of your committee if you'd find somebody with this parallel. we didn't find this staff on the d.c. exchange because we're trying to figure out what's better for our staff. we're trying to figure out what's best for your
politically and whatever calculation we need that made that calculation. i think it's great to sit and listen to you all talk about how we could do better for our staff if only that was our goal. so, knowing that it really is our goal in our heart, even if we can't live that out politically, if you stumble across the idea that could get us the most bang for the least amount of political buck. i'm willing to listen to derek and say, you're bonkers because my constituents at home don't have multiple health care choices and only one choice on the change and you know what, the congressional staffers they need the choices on the d.c. exchange and the choices on the fbhp. it's great staff management and lousy reelection politics. i don't want our staff to be-- and if you get us across those things for the staff the
constituents to hire i expect you have a view on that and you come across those things, i would value that submission at had a later date. thank you, mr. chairman. >> very good. >> mr. cleaver. >> my final comment. you've been very helpful to me. but we have perhaps the most unique situation in the country because you know, the staff salaries are exhibits canned indispensebly to ours. the american public hate us. and so until we can figure out a way to make the american public at a minimum just say, we're okay, or tolerate, tolerate is a good word, tolerate us, then there's--
there's always going to be any hesitation to raise the congressional salaries which means that the staff members are stuck. the federal courts were attached-- the federal judges in this country had their salaries attached. and they filed suit and i warned everybody, some of close friends they were going to win the suit because the judges are the judges. and they did. so they were decoupled and so they get 15 years back salary. court ordered. and salaries set 25% higher than ours. and so maybe the staff members need to sue us, i don't -- you know, i think, i'm, we have a weird situation, but the reality is that we've got to figure out a way for congress to function, to-- you can't fix it, but to gain
the respect of the american public and maybe we quit talking about each other. you know, maybe we ought to quit saying nasty things. i don't know. that may be going too far, but i just think that the bottom line on all of this, none of this is going to be helpful if the american public hates us. editorial. . >> you can always end it with, "don't you agree? and then it's a question. [laughter] >> and without objection all members have five legislative days to submit written questions to the chair which will be forwarded to the witness for their response. i ask our witnesses to please respond as promptly as you are able, and without objection all members will have five
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