We the Partnership

A leadership model for federal leaders during times of crisis

By Andrew Marshall | June 19, 2020

It’s been one year since we released the standard for effective government leadership, with our Public Service Leadership Model. And it’s clear from our work with federal leaders that these values are resonating as the nation navigates these turbulent and uncertain times.

The model is particularly important now as the public turns to leaders to listen to their concerns, share a vision of hope and make thoughtful decisions.

The model emphasizes the core values unique to public service: stewardship of public trust and commitment to public good. And it identifies the critical competencies leaders must master to achieve their desired impact.

The strong positive response we’ve received confirms the need for a clear standard in public service leadership. But we didn’t want to stop with a resonant concept. Since its release we’ve put the model into action and provided additional resources and tools to support federal leaders in their ongoing development.

Recently, the Harvard Business Review published our article highlighting the model’s practical uses. And we updated our website to help federal leaders incorporate the model into their own leadership development, providing reflective questions and resources, including videos and blog posts from our Government Leadership Advisory Council. We’ve also launched new programs centered on the model’s core tenets and made significant changes to our existing professional development courses, such as the Excellence in Government Fellows program, to align them with the model’s leadership competencies.

And we’re just getting started.

What’s next for the leadership model

In an exciting development, we’re integrating our recently released Public Service Leadership 360 Assessment Tool into our programs and partnering with agencies that want to use it to assess their employees. The 360 assessment provides leaders with a broad view of their leadership style, and insights into how their perspective differs or aligns with those of their colleagues. If the leadership model is a map to help federal leaders identify the destination of their leadership journey, the 360 assessment serves as a compass, providing guidance and focus so they can strengthen their self-awareness to shift their management behaviors.

If all federal leaders grounded themselves in the core values and harnessed the key competencies from the model, we would have a stronger government and stronger country, better equipped to respond to crises like those we’re navigating today. As we celebrate the one-year anniversary of the model’s release, the Partnership is looking ahead to its future and how the model can be used to support the vast potential for public service leadership.

Learn more about the Public Service Leadership Model on our website and on our blog:


Andrew Marshall