Teresa Sorrenti

Responsibilities: Sorrenti is program manager for the Integrated Acquisition Environment (IAE) at the General Services Administration. IAE will link various acquisition systems used across government.

What makes her a good program manager: Unlike most program managers, Sorrenti deals with many agencies in carrying out her mission. But she is effective because she is well organized, has an inclusive management style and knows when to compromise, said Marty Wagner, associate administrator of GSA's Office of Governmentwide Policy. And, when deadlines are tight, she knows when not to wait for permission. "Certain decisions you can't make, but [for] an awful lot of things you can read the wind," Wagner said.

How she ended up in the job: Sorrenti has overseen IAE since the program's inception in October 2001. She was working at the Federal Supply Service, where she developed and implemented logistics and acquisitions systems and also helped launch GSA Advantage, an online procurement system. She's also been active in national and international groups that are developing standards for electronic commerce.

Best advice she's received: Keep communicating with all the players — both agencies and vendors — to make sure folks are on board when decisions are made, so no one gets surprised. Stakeholders must be engaged so they see future benefits early on and are willing to work through the internal process changes required to achieve benefits.

Best lesson she's learned on the job: It is rarely the technology that is the true roadblock — it is people and processes. "Don't underestimate transition and business process change within the agency," she said. "You can have buy-in with the concept and a lot of agreement, but that doesn't mean there's not a lot of work to be done by the agencies and that they don't need a lot of assistance in transition."

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