The Federal Coach: Running a ‘Hot Bench’: An Interview with SSA Commissioner Michael Astrue

Michael J. Astrue has been the commissioner of Social Security since 2007. As commissioner, Astrue has focused his efforts on reducing the disability backlog and improving service to the public, particularly through electronic services. He has served in all three branches of government and spent 14 years in the biotechnology industry. Astrue is also an award-winning poet.

What leadership lessons did you learn from your experience working in the private sector, and how have you applied them to your tenure as the SSA commissioner?

The leadership element is pretty much the same, no matter what the environment. It is finding the best people for positions, defining the mission, and giving them guidance and the positive and negative comments on performance. I was pretty surprised the first time I went into government from the private sector. Somehow I thought that it was going to be very different–and, in a lot of ways, it was, but in a lot of ways the challenges were the same.

To read this story in its entirety, click here.

Leave a Comment

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply