A Passion for Leadership

Overview

A Passion for Leadership is an advice manual for those who want to enact reform from a position of leadership in a bureaucratic organization. It also examines the challenges of reforming public sector institutions in the United States and some of the related experiences of Robert Gates, the author.

For the determined leader, reform is possible in any organization, especially if a leader sets goals and applies a clear strategy to meet those goals. Reform is even possible in the federal government so long as the leader of a bureaucracy is sufficiently determined to achieve it and to make a lasting impression. Reform requires that leaders craft a vision for change and persuade the organization they lead of its importance. Setting deadlines and clear goals is helpful to this process. 

The creation of task forces and the need for managers to acquire micro-knowledge about an organization’s work are central to reforming any organization. But working at the highest levels of the federal government requires other skills and strategies. This includes knowing how to handle questioning before a congressional committee and managing the relationship between the White House and the Department of Defense. 

The book is dedicated to young people who might be considering a career in the federal government

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