Philip L. Hoffman

Your father has wisdom that needs hearing, so thanks for bringing it here. Far too many federal organizations promote without adequate training, and while a few technical SME’s are good managers by nature, most are not. Yet they end up being the Office Directors – in no small part because they stuck it out.

Federal agencies need to train people to be managers, and that training needs to be an explicit part of the employee’s development and performance plans. Agencies also need to make standards of practice for managers clear, and managers in turn need to communicate that along the chain below them.

I often wonder, however, how much of the lack of real active management in our organizations falls back to the fact that our most senior managers are political appointees, and thus not really part of the culture of the agency.