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Government Entrepreneur Learning Outcomes

This training embodies the core competencies of OPM’s Executive Core Qualification #5: Building Coalitions. At the end of this training, students will understand how to:

  • Build coalitions internally and with other Federal agencies, State and local governments, nonprofit and private
  • Develop networks and build alliances; collaborate across boundaries to build strategic relationships and achieve common goals.
  • Perceive organizational and political reality and act accordingly.
  • Persuade others; build consensus through give and take; gain cooperation from others to obtain information and accomplish goals.

Leaders of government agencies are under increasing pressure to produce more results with fewer resources. There is less tolerance on the part of Congress and the public for government inefficiency, stove-piping, and duplication of capabilities. At the same time, government agencies are responding by building coalitions internally and across agencies, including putting in place interagency and public-private partnerships to address large-scale challenges. Collaboration is on the increase – and so is competition. Almost every government agency has created a reimbursable funding model for sharing specific capabilities with other agencies.

This environment places new demands on government leaders and employees. Employees now need entrepreneurial skill and judgment, and the know-how to position their organization for future success. To be sure, entrepreneurship looks very different in the public sector than in the private sector. While some successful government employees are “born” entrepreneurs, more often people become successful entrepreneurs through training and experience. The Government Entrepreneur helps public sector professionals develop the entrepreneurial skills and judgment appropriate for use in the government sector – identifying new opportunities, deepening customer relationships, calculating risk, creating a narrative, and creating mutually beneficial partnerships.

Course Content

The Government Entrepreneur consists of three main curriculum units focused on:

  1. Building strong customer relationships
  2. Telling the story of what they’re offering
  3. Understanding the mechanics of partnerships

The ability to build strong relationships is central to entrepreneurship. Therefore, the first half of the training day is spent in unit one, “The Science of Customer Relationships.” We offer students a quick method for identifying communication and decision-making styles of themselves, their colleagues, and their customers. With this understanding, students then learn how to negotiate with, gain cooperation from, build consensus with, read, persuade, influence, and predict the behavior of their colleagues and customers. (A major side benefit is that internal teams will start to function better too!).

The second unit of the Government Entrepreneur, “The Art of Storytelling,” is focused on packaging the team’s capabilities in a story that will resonate with customers. We cover best practices in messaging as well as in creating “tools of the trade,” such as quad charts, white papers, briefings, and proposals. This unit also covers navigating internal and external politics and positioning the organization for success.

The mechanics of building a partnership with another organization is a challenge that we address in the third unit of Government Entrepreneur. This is not just about salesmanship, it is about building mutually beneficial coalitions across agencies. In this unit, we focus on closing the deal, which includes the mechanics of creating partnerships across government and non-government entities, and strategies for completing the transaction.

Course Length and Logistics

The course can be delivered in one full day of training, with follow-up training to dive deeply into topics of specific concern. Regardless of length, Government Entrepreneur offers:

  • High level of interactivity
  • Students learn by doing
  • Lectures and discussion intermixed with small group working sessions
  • Students leave sessions with a roadmap that they can immediately apply in their workplace
  • Industry tools and templates embedded in all modules

While this is considered “COTS” training, we customize exercises and discussions to focus on specific opportunities and challenges unique to our customers.