Author Archive

Mark A. Abramson

Management

The Future of the Secret Service: A Conversation with Carol Leonnig

The agency needs a mission overhaul, new technology and a promotion system focused on performance, not loyalty, says the author of "Zero Fail: The Rise and Fall of the Secret Service."

Management

‘The Premonition’: Two Takeaways for Government

Michael Lewis’ new book about the pandemic highlights public servants’ enduring challenges in navigating messy bureaucracies.

Management

Big Government Is Back. Is the Civil Service Ready?

The administration must seriously consider whether the civil service is equipped to effectively implement Biden’s vision. A new book offers guidance.

Management

How New Agency Leaders Can Get Off to a Successful Start

Whether you’re a new appointee or a career executive starting a new assignment, take some advice from your predecessors.

Management

After Confirmation: The Golden Hour for Political Appointees

What senior leaders should expect and how they can make the most of the opportunity they’ve been given.

Management

Reflections on Public Service During a Pandemic

A conversation with Paul Lawrence, the former Under Secretary for Benefits at the Veterans Affairs Department.

Management

The Deputy Secretary: Linchpin to Making Government Work

Sixteen former deputy secretaries share insights about a critical—but often ambiguous—job.

Management

What to do Between Nomination and Confirmation: Insights for Political Appointees

Interviews with dozens of previous officeholders offer guidance for handling what can be a very difficult period.

Management

Waiting for a Call From the Biden Team With a Job Offer?

The new administration will be filling thousands of jobs. There’s only one reason to say yes, but many to say no.

Management

While Biden’s Cabinet Is Important, Watch the Sub-Cabinet

The skills and background needed for managerial positions are significantly different than those for policy positions.

Management

Whoever Wins the Election, There Will Be a Transition

A veteran of previous transitions offers program implementation strategies for a new administration—whether that’s Trump’s 2nd term or a Biden presidency.

Management

History Does Repeat Itself: Lessons from the Polio Vaccine

Creating a safe vaccine is one thing; distributing it fairly and effectively is an altogether different challenge.

Management

When Government Does Not Work: A Primer

A new book chronicles the Trump administration’s efforts to upend the U.S. immigration system.

Management

The Challenge of Managing Up

What’s interesting about Gen. Jim Mattis’ new book is not his views on leading others, but his discussion of his frustration with bosses above him.

Management

Four Leadership Takeaways from Ash Carter

The former Defense secretary has important advice for both political and career executives.

Management

Going to the Moon: Reflections on a Government Success Story 50 Years Later

“The real heroes of Project Apollo were public servants,” says historian Douglas Brinkley.

Management

You Don’t Need Leadership Training to Lead

An interview with retired Gen. Stanley McChrystal on the nature of leadership.

Management

How To Be Successful in the Trump Administration: Four Lessons From Previous Political Appointees

The average wait time between nomination and confirmation is three months—use it wisely.