Survivor Island: Your office

It’s got to be a sobering thought when you consider that your brand new boss made his television bones hosting a show (The Apprentice) where people routinely got fired as the studio audience cheered him on. Which is sort of the situation many federal workers face (or believe they face) right now.

President Donald Trump, a well-known, yet in many ways mysterious real estate developer (sort of like calling Babe Ruth a good pitcher), demolished his GOP opponents to win the nomination. Then he confounded virtually all the experts with a strategy that concentrated on electoral, rather than popular, votes that minimized his opponent’s huge leads in California and New York.

Like many new presidents, one of his first orders of business was to slap on a 90-day hiring freeze (with beaucoup exceptions). Now he’s looking for ways to beef up Defense while putting places like HUD, Health and Human Services, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Food and Drug Administration on a diet that would put Jenny Craig to shame.

Federal unions (which with one exception supported Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton) send out daily warnings to their members that the end is a lot nearer than it was just a month ago. They do this by reflex anytime a Republican is elected, but this time they could be right.


Or not.

With Republicans controlling both the House and the Senate, long-stalled, round-up-the-usual-suspects bills are being revived. So what’s possible and what’s likely? How do you survive (maybe even thrive) in this very new environment?

Today at 10 a.m. on our Your Turn radio show, we’ll talk with Federal News Radio reporter Nicole Ogrysko, who’s been diving into the complex hiring freeze trying to figure it out while also tracking five to eight bills that, if they become law, could impact your career big time.

In the worst-case scenario, they would, among other things, make it much easier for your boss to fire you, allow individual members of Congress to single out individuals for a pay cut, weaken the power of unions (etc.), and make it much, much easier to fire you.

If you’re in the upper levels of the civil service, stay tuned for a chat with Carol Bonosaro. She’s the retired president of the Senior Executives Association and she’s got lots of tips for surviving — maybe thriving — the transition.

That’s 10 a.m. EST at or in the D.C. area, 1500 AM. If you have questions for Nicole or Carol send them to me (before show time) at

Nearly Useless Factoid

By Michael O’Connell

The average lemon has eight seeds.

Source: Lemonography