Government That Works, The Results Revolution in the States

Government That Works showcases the critical shift underway in state government and the inspiring results being achieved. There is a great opportunity for the states to collaborate in streamlining state government, improving the lives of our people and redefining the course of the nation.”

~ GOVERNOR JOHN HICKENLOOPER, State of Colorado, Chair of the National Governors Association

“John Bernard cares about making government work for the people. His approachable style of writing brings issues alive and helps you imagine how things could work better for all of us.”

~ LORD JONATHAN EVANS, Former Director General of MI5, Member of the House of Lords, United Kingdom

“Government That Works gives us a firsthand look at some of the bold, creative changes sweeping America. It’s more than a good read. It’s a blueprint for success at every level of government.”

~ GOVERNOR RICK SNYDER, State of Michigan

“It is not a question of whether we are moving our states left or right, but whether we are moving our states forward or back. In this search for answers, John Bernard’s Govern- ment That Works: The Results Revolution in the States offers an important path towards a better future for our states.”


“Bernard has concocted a powerful antidote for the deepening pessimism about Amer- ica’s future. He combines extracts of what’s working with a tincture of practical advice into a prescription for transforming government.”

~ DAVID GIULIANI, SBA Small Businessperson of the Year, and National Entrepreneur of the Year for Manufacturing

With forewords by Governor Martin O’Malley of Maryland and Governor Rick Snyder of Michigan.

A growing army of public servants, frustrated with “business as usual” in state government, are joining the Results Revolution. Deeply committed to delivering superb service to the citizens of their states, they have begun adopting state-of-the-art management practices that are making the work of government far more effective and efficient.

Addressing the fact that most Americans feel deeply dissatisfied with government at all levels, the results revolutionaries have resolved to eliminate waste, improve responsiveness, and deliver results that will win back the trust and admiration of their constituents.

Government That Works: The Results Revolution in the States provides a detailed and practical blueprint for a new system of management any state and its agencies can use. The system relies on collecting and analyzing accurate data, setting ambitious goals for improved performance, measuring progress toward those goals, and closing the gap. Stressing the need for utter transparency and full accountability for results, the system drives the breakthroughs and innovative solutions every state needs in order to satisfy its customers — its citizens.

The results revolutionaries are transforming “the way we do things around here,” setting high standards, empowering workers to make decisions that benefit the customer, reducing bureaucratic red tape, and borrowing many best practices from business, such as Lean and project management. All are aimed at improving everything from the waiting time for a driver’s license to the quality of education and child welfare.

In this book you will meet many heroes of the revolution — smart, dedicated, and hardworking government officials who have begun to reap the benefits of the “best of the best” management techniques, from sweeping new approaches to fostering full employee engagement to scorecards that show workers what they need to do to deliver exceptional service. Their ranks include Governors O’Malley, Snyder, Kitzhaber, Inslee and Haslam, COOs Michael Jordan and Greg Adams, and agency heads such as Colette Peters, Rebecca Hunter, Steve Arwood, Ed Burckle and John Batiste, to name a few.

The system you will learn in this book draws from the author’s previous book, Business at the Speed of Now.


john-bernardJOHN M. BERNARD, author
 of the best-selling book Business 
at the Speed of Now (Wiley 
2012), and chairman and founder
 of the consulting company Mass
 Ingenuity has won praise for his
 expertise on transforming state 
government. John and his firm have shown thousands of state officials how to build a bridge between business best practices and the complexities of state government. The company’s emphasis on results-driven management has helped dozens of state agencies incorporate total transparency, full accountability, ardent employee engagement, and Lean/process improvement into their operations.


Chapter 1: The Results Revolution

Delivering on the Promise of Social Good

  • Joining the Revolution
  • Fixing the Process
  • Improving Societal Outcomes
  • Learning a Lesson from New York City
  • Applying the New Management Philosophy to Government

Chapter 2: Models for Change

Understanding the Mechanisms of Transformation

  • Fearing Fear Itself
  • Applying the Antidote
  • Learning from Three Case Studies
    • New Mexico Motor Vehicles
    • Oregon Youth Authority
    • Colorado’s Lean Commitment

Chapter 3: The Complexity Challenge

Setting Goals and Measuring Results

  • Restoring Simplicity
  • Determining What We Want
  • Focusing on Results
  • Capturing Data
  • Defining Outcomes

Chapter 4: The Missing Link

Redesigning the Management System

  • Managing on the Edge of Change
  • Putting People Front and Center
  • Seeing the Organization as a Set of Processes

Chapter 5: The Fundamentals

Connecting the Work to the Results

  • Getting the Fundamentals Right: Michigan
  • Launching Results Washington
  • Adopting a Bottom-Up Strategy: Oregon
  • Creating a Fundamentals Map
  • Going Bottom-Up and Top-Down

Chapter 6: Big Breakthroughs

Planning and Managing the Game Changers

  • Achieving Breakthroughs: Colorado
  • Investing in People: Lead Tennessee
  • Setting Bold Targets: Washington’s Target Zero
  • Designing Innovative Solutions: New Mexico Healthcare
  • Sponsoring Large Scale Change

Chapter 7: True Accountability

Using Business Reviews to Drive Action

  • Structuring Stat Reviews: Lessons from Maryland
  • Doing it the Washington Way
  • Oregon’s Retirement System: Thinking in Terms of Process
  • Best Practices for Business Reviews
  • Taking Seven Sure Steps to True Accountability

Chapter 8: Creativity on the Frontline

Engaging Employees in Removing Waste

  • Creating a Safe Improvement Zone
  • Ridding the System of Waste
  • Learning the Vocabulary of Waste
  • Living the Lean Life
  • Building Internal Capacity
  • Making Magic on the Frontline

Chapter 9: The Results Leader

Turning Resistance into Opportunity

  • Sharing the Vision
  • Describing the Gap
  • Teaching the New Thinking, Modeling the New Behavior
  • Removing the Resistance
  • Mastering the Five Steps of Transformation Leadership
  • Mastering Resilience

Chapter 10: A Results Legacy

Sustaining a Hard-Fought Shift

  • Building a Positive Business Alliance
  • Turning Big Data into Large Opportunities
  • Passing Results-Driven Legislation
  • Creating a Sustainable Management System
  • Automating Performance Management
  • Taking Time to Get it Right

Chapter 11: Recommendations

Winning The Results Revolution

  • Implementing Your Own Results-Driven System
  • Implementing Your Transformation in Phases
  • Eight Best Practices of Results-Driven Government

Chapter 12: Conclusion

Joining the Voice for the Common Good

  • Reclaiming Our Voice and Our Common Interest
  • Meet Governor Rick Snyder of Michigan
  • Meet Governor Martin O’Malley of Maryland
  • Choosing Results Not Sides
  • The Results Pledge