How to build a 21st century government for citizens

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Alan Balutis, senior director and distinguished fellow at Cisco Systems, discusses his five-step plan to modernize the federal government, and why reviving the 70-year-old Hoover Commission may help reorganize the executive branch.


The Trump administration says that their reorganization plan will modernize the government, and work better for citizens. Alan Balutis, senior director and distinguished fellow at Cisco Systems, recently wrote in FCW about a five-step plan to build a 21st Century government — suggesting moving quickly on the parts of the reorg that don’t need congressional approval, revive the post-war Hoover commission, provide early-out authority across government, find new government models and update the workforce. Balutis says that in order to accomplish that last goal, there needs to be less “baby boomers” in government.

 

“I have taken personal abuse for this particular statement from my baby boomer colleagues,” Balutis laughed. “More often than not, when they talk about government problems, they’ll say it’s not the technology, it’s not the structure, it is the culture. Culture to me is habits and ways of doing business that are embedded in the people. If we are going to change the culture we need to change the people. This new generation, that is more IT savvy, relies much more on collaboration to get things done. I think we’re better off giving them the opportunity to lead, especially if we are going to create a 21st century government.”