The Operator's Manual for the New Administration

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The Operator's Manual for the New Administration

Wednesday, September 12th, 2012 - 9:18

The Operator's Manual is a guide of how government works and how to make it work to advance policy goals and objectives. We present, in brief and simple terms, descriptions of the most important tools and levers that executives can use to advance agency goals and the president's agenda. This Manual will help executives understand the terrain of government, become familiar with the terms and lingo used inside agencies, and know how to effectively use the tools of government.

Chapters include information on leadership, performance, people, money, contracting, technology, innovation, and collaboration. The Foreward begins, "Musing about the word 'operator,' one’s thoughts drift to the only true government insiders’ use for the word: the one that describes the intelligence officer or special military professional who works in the secret, sometimes dark, and often dangerous world of clandestine intelligence activities.

But wait a minute; that doesn’t seem to be among the topics treated in this volume. So we focus on the phrase 'operator’s manual.' Aha, that’s it: The analogy is to one of those instruction books that come with complex machines. I am reminded of the four 6-inch binders that came with the 30-foot, jet-powered, state-of the art picnic boat a friend bought recently. These how-to volumes for the craft he christened the Richard Henderson were truly impenetrable to those uninitiated in modern maritime ways.

Government is even more complex than the Richard Henderson, and so it seems audacious to think that an operator’s manual can fit in fewer than 200 pages. But that is what you will find in this book by leaders of IBM’s Center for The Business of Government."

Read individual chapters of the book or order a copy.

Chapter One: Leadership (** Read our latest version, updated 1/13, on Leadership.)

Chapter Two: Performance (**Read our latest version, updated 12/12, on Performance.)

Chapter Three: People (** Read our latest version, updated 2/13, on People.)

Chapter Four: Money (**Read our latest version, updated 12/12, on Money.)

Chapter Five: Contracting (** Read our lastest version, updated 1/13, on Contracting.)

Chapter Six: Technology (** Read our latest version updated 1/13, on Technology.)

Chapter Seven: Innovation  (** Read our latest version updated 2/13, on Innovation.)

Chapter Eight: Collaboration (**Read our latest version, updated 01/13, on Collaboration.)

 

Read our other resources from Governing in the Next Four Years.