Seven Principles of Good Government: Gary E. Johnson

Published October 1, 2000

1. Become reality-driven. Don’t kid yourself or others. Find out what’s what and base your decisions and actions on that.

2. Always be honest and tell the truth. It is extremely difficult to do any real damage to people who are willing to tell the truth regardless of the consequences.

3. Always do what’s right and fair. Remember, the more you actually accomplish, the louder your critics become. Learn to ignore them. Maintain your integrity and continue to do what’s right.

4. Determine your goal. Develop a plan to reach that goal. Then act–don’t procrastinate.

5. Make sure everyone who ought to know what you’re doing, knows what you’re doing.

6. Don’t hesitate to deliver bad news. Acknowledge mistakes immediately. There may still be time to salvage things or to make corrections. Take Henry Kissinger’s advice: “Anything that will be revealed eventually, should be revealed immediately.”

7. Be willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done. If your job doesn’t excite you enough to follow this principle, resign and get a job you love enough to do what it takes.