Journal: People Science - Human Capital Management & Leadership in the public sector Volume 1, Issue 2 Spring/Summer 2014 - Page 4

Springtime For Leadership Editorial Spring is here! People across the country are enjoying the end of an especially nasty winter and the start of some glorious weather. With all due respect to T.S. Elliot’s Waste Land, I view April, and early spring as an entirely energizing time of year, more in keeping with the poem, “Today,” in which Billy Collins wrote about a spring day “so perfect, so uplifted by a warm intermittent breeze that it made you want to throw open all the windows in the house …” Spring is renewal. And that’s how I feel about this issue of People Science. We’ve brought on a very talented designer, Adam Privette (as I’m sure you’ll appreciate when you compare this issue to the last one). We’ve also formed an incredible editorial committee led by former Commerce Department CLO, Dr. Fred Lang, and made up of senior executives, consultants and subject matter experts from across government and the private sector. Our all-volunteer editorial committee members and the author contributors to People Science represent optimism. They’re a reminder of the contributions public servants make everyday to the welfare of this country, despite all the hurdles placed in their way. Leadership is the theme of this issue. It’s a well-worn topic, but before you put this magazine aside, consider that less than half the government workforce believes that its leaders are capable of inspiring them to better performance. In other words, they’re saying that their leaders can’t lead! On the flip side, consider also how hard it is to be a senior leader today, and especially in government. Our cover title: “Leading in the Dark,” captures this in dramatic fashion through the experiences of Martha Johnson, former Administrator of the GSA, who reveals lessons from the incidents that led to her resignation as it happens, on an early spring day in 2012. Spring is also a time for renewed thinking. After a winter in which federal offices were closed for at least eleven days, it’s a travesty that only about 6 percent of the US federal workforce enjoys flexible work arrangements such as telework when almost half qualify (see: “Leading a Distributed Workforce,” P. 30”). Leaders have to step up and learn to manage distributed teams – for the good of the workforce and for the good of the country. As I sit here – just outside Savannah, GA, with the French doors to my office wide open to the spring breeze and classical music playing in the background – I’m enjoying work to the fullest. I find my “flow” almost everyday and am able to produce more and better work than even on my best days in the office. I hope that “springttime” for telework might finally arrive in 2014 but it will take real leaders to get us there. Allan Schweyer Editor-in-Chief