Getting It Done: A Guide for Government Executives

Four years ago, the IBM Center for The Business of Government released a book to guide new government executives, especially new political appointees. The goal of the book was to quickly acclimate new government executives to the world of public service as practiced in Washington, D.C. The book, entitled Getting It Done: A Guide for Government Executives (this is the first version), contained a series of short strategic discussions about "the dos and don’ts" of Washington and presented useful insights about working with key stakeholders and constituencies.

Over the last four years, Getting It Done has been widely read, ordered, and re-ordered as a must-read roadmap to hit the ground running for agency leaders. With the advent of a second term for the Obama administration, a new set of leaders will arrive across the federal government in coming months. Accordingly, the Center is updating and rereleasing some key publications that have been well-received. Getting It Done is at the forefront of this effort.

Historically, second terms for a presidency have seen significant activity in improving government. The Clinton administration’s National Partnership for Reinventing Government and the Bush administration’s President’s Management Agenda both saw renewed focus in the four years following reelection. The opportunity for new leaders in the Obama administration to make a difference is great. We hope that this update to Getting It Done will prove useful in helping them to achieve success.

Part I of the book offers a straightforward to-do list to guide officials in their new leadership positions. Tips include how to act quickly on what can't wait, develop a vision and a focused agenda, and much more. Part II of the book provides short overviews of the fourteen stakeholders that government officials will most frequently encounter. These stakeholders include policy councils, Congress, unions, and the Government Accountability Office.

Order your copy here.