Create a positive organizational culture.
Be explicit about your values and management style—how you will treat others, how you want them to treat you and how you expect them to treat each other. Some best practices to consider: Praise in public, criticize in private. Decide early how you are going to behave on the worst of days, and then try your hardest not to behave any worse.
Communicate, communicate … and then communicate again.
As a new leader, it is virtually impossible to communicate too much with your organization. Develop a compelling narrative of where you want to take the organization and how you plan to engage them on the journey. Tell the story again and again in forums such as meetings, internal messages or your blog.
Flournoy and Spelling, who are currently senior advisers at the Boston Consulting Group, said there are many other issues to keep in mind, but that the most important advice they can offer is for political leaders to maintain their integrity. “Every political appointee pledges an oath to support and defend the Constitution. Be true to that oath and, at the most fundamental level, you can't go wrong,” they write.
Current and former political appointees, what advice do you have for newly appointed leaders in their first 100 days in government? And career civil servants, how can these new leaders best succeed within your agencies? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below. You can also email me at email@example.com.
Tom Fox writes the Federal Coach blog for the Washington Post and is the vice president for leadership and innovation at the Partnership for Public Service. Fox also heads up the Partnership’s Center for Government Leadership.
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