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The President's Management Council

Letter from Clay Johnson - May 2003

I look forward to working on the President's Management Agenda with each of you, if and when I am confirmed by the Senate to be the next Deputy Director for Management at OMB. I share with you here my thoughts and observations from my time spent as a counselor to Mark Everson the past few months.

Most all of you are making great progress on your Management Agenda items. Collectively you're in the process of moving from a predominantly RED scorecard today, to one that will be predominantly YELLOW this same time next year.

The initiative owners, OMB's Resource Management Offices and I (if and when confirmed by the Senate) know that our primary responsibility going forward is to help the departments and agencies execute the management plans that have been developed over the past 18 months. We have primarily been in the "planning business" up to now, but with a good stage set, we are ready to transition over to the "doing business".

We are committed to help you develop the understanding and master the skills you need to become the high performance organizations you aspire to be. We will make sure you know what your cohorts in the other agencies have done well and not, to help you understand how best to get to green. We will help you train your people, develop good performance measures for hard-to-measure programs, identify barriers to success, track progress, better engage the rank and file, and ensure continued high priority attention to the Management Agenda.

In preparation for assuming the duties of the DDM, I have just participated in the 2nd Quarter Scorecard meetings and been briefed on where each agency is on each initiative, I observe that the agencies that are farthest along on any given initiative are the ones that have:

  • the greatest commitment to the Agenda at the highest level of management
  • the clearest picture of what they want to accomplish
  • the most aggressive timeline/milestones, and
  • the most specific definition of who's responsible overall, and who's supposed to do what, with whom, by when

I observed that an agency's progress on the Management Agenda is not tied at all to what else that agency is dealing with. Commitment, clarity, aggressiveness and accountability are the keys to success.

Yours truly,
Clay Johnson

Clay Johnson Reports on Status of PMA - July, 2003
Clay Johnson Reports on Status of PMA - May, 2003
Mark W. Everson Reports on the Status of the PMA - December 1, 2002
Mark W. Everson Reports on the Status of the PMA - September 1, 2002

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