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by Diane Benjamin
Don’t jump to the end – it will say where this information is from, but have fun reading until then!
In both previous evaluations, the council said Hales exceeded expectations, rating him an average of 3.9 out of 5 in eight areas of job performance.
In the January 2003 evaluation, which the council has agreed to provide as his most recent performance review to prospective future employers, councilors laud Hales for his integrity and hard work.
When asked, two councilors said they had no concerns about Hales’ performance during his first year on the job.
In the November 2003 review, city staff and councilors gave Hales failing grades for his work in the areas of leadership, communication and organization.
One manager called Hales ‘the worst leader I have been around, bar none,’ in a 30-year career.
The manager said Hales often went around department heads when making a decision. In one case the observer said Hales stopped a major project in his department without discussing it first.
‘(David Hales) has not elicited from department heads a sense of teamwork in approaching city issues. Discussions often take place, but we seldom, if ever, leave the discussion with a concrete sense of specific policy questions and recommended actions to be considered by the city council…This is the analysis-paralysis syndrome,” wrote one manager.
‘David has a hard time taking a position on controversial issues,’ wrote one councilor in the evaluation. ‘It is difficult to know where David is coming from. He appears adverse to taking the initiative on matters that are well within his authority to do so.’
Another councilor observed that David was a ‘nice person’ but seemed to focused on minor issues.
Some of the department heads has difficulty adjusting to his management style, Hales said.
Not everyone gave Hales low marks.
One manager said the Hales has ‘improved’ the city.
Another praised Hales for his approach to management and his depth of knowledge.
The majority of comments from staff and council, however, centered around what reviewers said was Hales’ inability to work with department heads, take strong positions and move past details to policy level decisions.
These quotes were written after David Hales left as City Manager in Bend Oregon. It looks like the local newspaper had to sue to get records released. Evaluations completed in 2002 and early 2003 showed Hales exceeded expectations, but by November 2003 Hales was given failing grades. Quote: “Former City Manager David Hales’ fall from grace at Bend City Hall was swift, dramatic and largely unforeseen”
It’s funny that government acts just like other sectors when an employee leaves under cloudy circumstances: We won’t say anything bad about you – just go!
Read the whole report here: Hales-Bend Oregon