You May Be Doing Customer Service All Wrong

by John Kamensky Senior Fellow, IBM Center for the Business of Government

In the current issue of Harvard Business Review, two researchers who have worked with global commercial clients over the past 25 years offer some counter-intuitive advice for improving customer service. Jochen Wirtz and Ron Kaufman said it is important to focus on deep cultural change in the ... Read & React

How We Can Fix the VA Appeals Process

Earlier this year, Secretary of Veterans Affairs Bob McDonald called for a massive overhaul of the veterans’ benefits appeals process, calling it “cumbersome,” “clunky,” “antiquated” and “confusing.” According to its highest official, the VA appeal process is failing our nation’s veterans. It is ... Read & React

Leveling the Playing Field by Design

by Iris Bohnet

Back in December, journalists were surprised when President Obama called exclusively on female reporters during a press conference. The president is not the only one explicitly focusing on getting women to have more of a say. Google’s technical employees recently found this message in their inbox: ... Read & React

Why Congress Needs to Lift the Pay Cap on Administrative Law Judges

by Erin Masson Wirth

One thing both political parties agree upon is the need for qualified people to handle our nation’s most important duties. Public service has always been just that: a service. No one joins the federal government hoping to get rich; they join because they choose to participate actively in our ... Read & React

The One Word Everyone Needs to Stop Using in the Office

In the Bible, Eve is created to serve Adam. “It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him,” muses God in Genesis 2:18. Twenty-first-century office culture is no exception. More than 3,000 years later, the word “help” is used all the time—particularly in ... Read & React

Once Again, the GS System Is Failing Government

Some agencies find it difficult to compete for health care specialists and other high-demand professionals.
by Howard Risher Workforce Management Consultant

Government Executive’s April 4 story “How Poor Pay and Bad Planning Led to Diminished Medical Care for Federal Prisoners” discussed a problem that rarely warrants a headline but its impact goes well beyond the Bureau of Prisons. The article pointed out ongoing problems BOP is experiencing in ... Read & React

You Can Teach Yourself How to Be a Leader

Most people who are good at school follow a pretty straightforward strategy: study hard, get good grades, repeat. This basic approach to achievement stays the same from elementary school all the way through college. But while school is strategically simple, business is among the most complex of ... Read & React

How to Hire the Perfect Worker

In the summer of 2006, Todd Carlisle, a Google analyst with a doctorate in organizational psychology, designed a 300-question survey for every Google employee to fill out, The New York Times later reported. Some questions were straightforward: Have you ever set a world record? Other queries had ... Read & React

Closing Gender Wage Gap Is Good for the GDP

by Gillian B. White

For years, women’s pay has slowly increased relative to men’s, but, strangely, in 2015 that trend seemed to stall (or even reverse course). This apparent stagnation is discouraging for lots of reasons: More women are working and many are the primary, if not sole, earners in their households. And ... Read & React

Finding Your Center of Gravity When Things Could Spin Out of Control

This image by the Hubble Space Telescope reveals thousands of colorful galaxies swimming in the inky blackness of space.
by Raphael Hernandez

The moon and the stars lit up the desert sky and the cool breeze washed over me as I reflected on the days that had brought me to this point in time. I had made it a habit to take time to reflect in the evening after assuming a new role in the organization I was about to lead into Iraq. The ... Read & React