On My Watch: Leadership, Innovation & Personal Resilience

Written by Martha Johnson
Category: · Business & Money

In April of 2012, a scandal had emerged over a GSA training conference in Las Vegas, and Martha Johnson, Administrator of the General Services Administration for President Obama, was compelled to resign her position to quell the angry turmoil during Obama’s re-election campaign. Despite the uproar of that moment, Johnson asserts, the real story of GSA was of the extraordinary innovation underway at the agency. On My Watch: Leadership, Innovation,& Personal Resilience illuminates her tenure in the Obama Administration and explains her leadership strategies of innovation, interruption, transparency, and design in the face of seemingly intractable problems.

Johnson describes inventive techniques such as SLAMs, Pull Metrics, flexible and collaborative workplaces, and additional remarkable innovations that she and others brought to government. Johnson also emphasizes that leaders who change up the game deal in risk. On My Watch discusses what happens when things fall apart and how leaders can re-surface.

Johnson’s provocative and highly effective strategies for challenging bureaucratic torpor combine with her intensely personal story of resilience to offer valuable insights for leaders who want to make a big difference in the world. On My Watch is recommended for managers and leaders in government, corporations and non-profits both for its fascinating presentation of innovative strategies and insights into leadership challenges and for the unusual opportunity to window into personal resilience as an element of successful leadership.


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