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FCW : December 2013
Editor'sNote 6 December 2013 FCW.COM Former Commerce Department Chief Financial Of cer Linda Bilmes and former White House Chief of Staff William Daley argued in a recent Washington Post op-ed that there is an "absence of good management in the U.S. government." HealthCare.gov's troubles, they contend, were a perfect case in point: It took a near-total implosion to get the Obama administration to deploy a truly top-notch manager in Jeff Zients. Although Bilmes and Daley raise legitimate concerns, they overstate the federal management gap. After all, Zients was tapped because of the leadership he displayed while at the Of ce of Management and Budget. Danny Werfel was deployed to the Internal Revenue Service for similar reasons, and Dan Tangherlini brought a clear make-it-better mentality to the General Services Administration. Lower-pro le management talent is there, too, if you know where to look. As this issue's cover story makes clear, the Agriculture Department's FedRAMP-compliant cloud service would never have gotten off the ground without Jim Steven and the team he assembled. There might not be enough great managers in government, but good management is far from absent. (Note: Great federal managers deserve to be recognized. Make sure the ones you know are nominated for the Federal 100 awards by Dec. 23. Go to FCW.com/fed100 today!) Like any organization, the government can always bene t from new talent. The real problems, however, lie in the systems and disincentives that push agency leaders into uphill battles. A "gotcha" approach to oversight, byzantine procurement rules and the threat of another shutdown (see Page 24) all make good management far harder than it has to be. When it comes to remedies, however, I agree with Bilmes and Daley. "The hot opportunities must be in the managerial ranks, not just in policy positions," they wrote. "We need to train our civil servants how to be managers. And managers and their programs should bene t directly from improvements in ef ciency." In short, we should do the things that FCW writes about every day: Identify problems worth xing, help those with potential, and look for the exceptional individuals who are getting it right so the rest of us can learn from their management successes. --- TROY K. SCHNEIDER firstname.lastname@example.org, @troyschneider Why management matters EDITOR-IN-CHIEF EXECUTIVE EDITOR Troy K. Schneider John Bicknell PRINT MANAGING EDITOR Terri J. Huck STAFF WRITERS Amber Corrin, Frank Konkel, Adam Mazmanian, Mark Rockwell CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Richard E. Cohen, Alan Joch, Konstantin Kakaes, Eliza Krigman, John Moore, Colleen O'Hara, Katherine Reynolds Lewis, Richard A. Spires CREATIVE DIRECTOR Jeff Langkau ASSISTANT ART DIRECTOR Dragutin Cvijanovic SENIOR WEB DESIGNER Martin Peace EDITORIAL FELLOW Reid Davenport PRESIDENT James Causey CHIEF CONTENT OFFICER Anne Armstrong CHIEF REVENUE OFFICER Wendy LaDuke CHIEF MARKETING OFFICER Carmel McDonagh PRESIDENT AND CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER Neal Vitale SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT AND CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER Richard Vitale EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT Michael J. Valenti VICE PRESIDENT, FINANCE & ADMINISTRATION Christopher M. Coates VICE PRESIDENT, INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY& APPLICATION DEVELOPMENT Erik A. Lindgren VICE PRESIDENT, EVENT OPERATIONS David F. Myers CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD Jef frey S. Klein HOW TO REACH THE STAFF A list of sta members can be found online at www.fcw.com. E-mail: Sta members can be reached by using the nam- ing convention of first initial followed by their last name @1105govinfo.com. Vienna O ce (weekdays, 8:30 a.m. -- 5:30 p.m. ET) (703) 876-5100; Fax (703) 876-5126 8609 Westwood Center Drive, Suite 500, Vienna, VA 22182-2215 Corporate O ce (weekdays, 8:30 a.m. -- 5:30 p.m. PT) (818) 814-5200; Fax (818) 734-1522 9201 Oakdale Avenue, Suite 101, Chatsworth, CA 91311
November 30, 2013