DoD: You have License to Think

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A June 2023 Government Accountability Office report shows that DoD has a plethora of flexible authorities for more effectively pursuing and advancing knowledge and capability that are going unused or little used.   Why?  In this episode we try to answer that.

What these authorities have in common, when it comes to R&D, is they give the government a lot of flexibility and the workforce license to think.   However, this is antithetical to how things are currently done and this seems to be a problem.  For DoD, process has become the mission, and process is horrific!  When it comes to research and development and delivering new capability, it turns out that flexibility, collaboration, and creativity are important and valuable.  DoD has a conundrum.  How do they introduce problem-solving, critical thinking, and creativity into a workforce culture, and indeed, an entire system mired deeply in process?  Flexible authorities for R&D ask the bureaucracy to give up some control to allow for greater creativity and good business judgement… and to cultivate these qualities within teams and the workforce.

Whatever is prioritized gets done… few statements are truer.  For advancing knowledge and delivering new capability, does prioritizing process over accomplishing mission goals make sense?

The time is ripe to be a virtuous insurgent, and be disruptive and innovative; current acquisition authorities permit incredible opportunities for teams to apply creativity and be inventive in pursuit of accomplishing mission goals.   That is no joke.  There are authorities sitting on a shelf that allow just that.  Pioneers needed.