Ready to Govern

To ensure a smooth and safe transfer of power, the next administration and senior level appointees need to be ready to lead and manage our government effectively on day one.

Through a four-pronged approach, the Center for Presidential Transition’s Ready to Govern® initiative will assist the 2016 presidential candidates in navigating the transition process, engage Congress and promote presidential transition reforms, develop management recommendations for the next administration to address our government’s operational challenges, and train new and seasoned political appointees to lead effectively in their new positions.

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Assisting the 2016 Presidential Candidates

Candidates for the presidency must have a strong transition team that will lay the groundwork for the first days, weeks and months of their administration. There is currently no single place to which campaigns and administrations can turn for a comprehensive collection of information regarding transition planning. The Partnership developed a presidential transition guide that fills this void and provides guidance and suggested timelines for transition teams in 2016 and beyond. We are also facilitating relationships between transition teams, the outgoing administration and individuals with prior transition experience.

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Engaging Congress and Promoting Presidential Transition Reforms

With Partnership support, Congress has taken important steps in recent years to make improvements to the transition process, including streamlining the number of positions subject to Senate confirmation and making resources available to presidential transition teams prior to the election. Building off of these important pieces of legislation, we have identified additional actions that Congress can take to improve the transition process, including codifying best practices from prior transitions, designating a federal transition coordinator, and further reducing the number of positions subject to Senate confirmation.

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Developing a Management Roadmap

Sound management is essential to a successful presidency. Strong management enables the effective implementation of policy while management mistakes can cost an administration dearly in reputation and results. Transition teams are focused on setting the president up for success and should devote the time and resources to developing a robust management agenda. In partnership with the IBM Center for the Business of Government, we are working with good government stakeholders to develop management recommendations for the next administration.

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Preparing Presidential Appointees to Succeed

The success of every presidential administration depends in large measure in choosing great leaders and preparing them to lead in the public sector. To help political appointees transition into their new roles, we offer a series of 90-minute forums conducted in a nonpartisan environment. Through these forums, political leaders build networks of peer support, promote knowledge-sharing and collaborative problem-solving, and facilitate cross-agency coordination to make further progress toward shared goals.

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