Leaders In Government


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Leaders In Government - Political Vs. Where The Rubber Hits The Road

Most citizens think about leadership in government as the same thing as political leaders. Not surprising since the overwhelming majority of press about leadership in the public sector focuses on elected officials, their behavior, both good and bad.

But, that's not where all the action is. Politicians, while important in setting general departmental priorities, and of course, budgets have little to do with the day to day work of government. In fact, they truly don't know much about the details.

The "REAL" Government Leaders

The real government leaders who have a profound effect on government employees, and the lives of citizens are those in the offices, and on the line. It's those folks who inspire, problem solve, and deal with the day to day issues and decisions.

They also end up "covering" for the political masters.

A Salute To The Leaders In Government That Make Things Happen

So, here's a salute to the often maligned managers, directors, and even informal leaders in government. Let's have more of them.

Which brings us to what's below: takes on leadership in government that we think are worth reading; how to develop leaders for the future, how to help existing leaders operate in a poltiical environment, and a lot more.

Perspectives On Public Sector Leadership: Making It Better:

5 Elements of Meta-Leadership - GovLoop - Knowledge Network for Government - by Bryce Bender
Meta-leadership is an overarching leadership framework for strategically linking the efforts of different organizations to "provide guidance, direction, and momentum across organizational lines that develop into a shared course of action and commonality of purpose among people and agencies that are doing what may appear to be very different work." This framework was developed by Dr. Leonard Marcus and Dr. Barry Dorn of the National Preparedness Leadership Initiative (Views So Far 447 )

Leadership - The Link Between Planning and Doing - by Robert Bacal
Leadership is the element that links strategic planning, with doing - getting things done according to the goals of your government agency. In this extensive article, we look at reconceptualizing planning, and how leadership is essential in a climate of fiscal restraint in government. (Views So Far 257 )

Leading Those That Remain After Downsizing - by Robert Bacal
Government is under severe fiscal restraint, and staff levels are either frozen, or agencies are losing staff. How to you lead in a climate of cutbacks in government? That's our focus in this article. (Views So Far 218 )

Turning Around Negative Attitudes - by Robert Bacal
With fiscal cutbacks, morale in government is dropping drastically. In this article, you'll find some leadership tips to address the effects of downsizing, wage freezes and increased financial cutbacks. (Views So Far 244 )

Leading in Distrustful Times And A Tribute To Reg Alcock - by JERRY MECHLING
Part of the erosion of trust is a side effect of negative political advertising. Going negative clearly works. Given that it does, why don't we see Burger King going negative on McDonald's? The reason is that the private sector knows that you don't "kill the category." Negative ads about McDonald's soon would kill Burger King as well. In politics, going negative doesn't kill the category. But it does make it much harder to be successful. When government is seen as incompetent and illegitimate, governance suffers. To get the government and governance we need, we must attract many of the best from every generation into public service. (Views So Far 273 )

The Wrong -- and Right -- Way to Build a Strategic Plan - by BABAK ARMAJANI
Here's a sure-fire formula for developing a strategic plan for your organization that is guaranteed to collect dust on the shelf (Views So Far 272 )

The Leadership Dilemma in a Democratic Society - Re-energizing the Practice of Leadership for the Public Good - by na
Excellent seven part article on leading within the context of government, and in a democratic society. A little ugly looking but don' let the old fashioned web site be off putting. (Views So Far 222 )

Opinion: Numbers Don't Lie: It's Time to For Federal Leadership To Evolve - by SCOTT W. SPREIER
Three recent studies, one of which was reported here last week, confirm what many of us have long suspected: leadership in the federal government is overdue for a major overhaul. If the administration is serious about cutting costs and driving innovation, then rethinking how supervisors, managers, and executives are selected, developed, and promoted must become a top priority. The studies, done by the Partnership for Public Service with the help of my firm, Hay Group, all point to leadership as the No. 1 driver of engagement and performance. Without better leadership, they suggest, no amount of restructuring and reorganizing will solve the current resource and funding crisis. (Views So Far 240 )

Leadership in the Crucible: The Paradox of Character and Power - by Ray Blount
I have concluded is that developing future leaders lays not in the lack of systematic and intentional leadership development programs in government--what is now called human capital planning or leadership succession programs--and which does remain a gap. Rather, the larger issue lays squarely in resolving the very paradox that Lincoln understood so well. Developing character in leaders that will withstand the crucible of acquired power over others--whether as a GS-13 team leader, a senior executive, or an assistant secretary--this is the central, root issue to address. This "character gap" remains both the most discussed and yet least acted upon leadership challenge in public service today. How can I say that? Simple. It is the parable of the emperor's clothes--or at least that is the story that seems to be told most often to me. (Views So Far 215 )

Leadership and the Power of Killer Bees - by Otis White
Learning to think about systems asks a lot of overworked city managers, mayors or downtown executives who are simply trying to fix bad situations. But turning a coordinated swarm of killer bees loose on a problem can be the most effective way to clear the way for the rhino that can smash through those final barriers. (Views So Far 258 )

The Perils of Tunnel-Vision Leadership - Failed Change Initatives - by Russ Linden
The dangers of tunnel vision leadership, particularly with respect to managing change in public sector organizations. (Views So Far 225 )

Feds' view of senior leaders takes a nosedive - by Jack Moore
s employee morale stagnates and budget pressures ratchet up, strong federal leaders appear to be even more scarce than ever. Employee satisfaction with top agency leadership dipped in 2012 for the first time in a decade, following years of slight but consistent gains. Leadership scores fell to 52.8 points on a 100-point scale, a drop of 2.1 points from 2011 levels, according to a new report from the Partnership for Public Service and Deloitte. That's not the lowest score on record -- in fact, it's about comparable to 2009 levels -- however, it is the first time in the last 10 years that overall scores dropped year-over-year. The report is based on data from the Office of Personnel Management's 2012 Employee Viewpoint Survey. PPS also uses the data to create its annual rankings of "The Best Places to Work in the Federal Government." (Views So Far 239 )

Top 5 Leadership Questions from Government Supervisors - by Martha Austin
If you manage or lead in government you'll have asked these questions yourselves, and they are still relevant - Check out the one on motivating staff when there is no "carrot:. (Views So Far 213 )

Leadership Remains One of the Lowest Ranked Federal Workplace Categories - by Allison Primack
Yesterday evening, Tom Fox reported that according to the Best Places to Work in the Federal Government rankings, leadership remains to be one of the lowest ranked categories. Why are federal leaders receiving these low scores of 54.9 out of 100? (Views So Far 273 )

3 Key Leadership Mistakes Government Employees Make That Leave Them Burned Out - by Martha Austin
Popular article and discussion points to the issue of personal responsibility when it comes to leadership in government and talks about "conscious leadership". (Views So Far 235 )

The best places to work in the Federal Government Discussion - by Washington Post
Max Stier and Lara Shane discussed the 2012 Best Places to Work in the Federal Government 2012 Best Places to Work in the Federal Government. In times of restraint, leaders in government need to be sure their leadership skills are at an all time high, or risk lower morale, productivity, and lost quality employees. (Views So Far 237 )

Best Places to Work:The Big Picture - Leadership is key in tough times - by na
Recent report looking at the best places to work in government points to the importance of leadership in determining the quality of government workplace life. (Views So Far 256 )

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