Dear Mr. Donahoe,
It's been a little more than a year now since you assumed control of the United States Postal Service. What a rush that must have been, to achieve what seemed like the unachievable dream. The rush most certainly clouded your judgment or you would have turned down the horrific, God forsaken assignment of saving the United States Postal Service from extinction. Between the politicians, unions, and powerful customers (all looking for special favors) the cards have been stacked against your success from the very start. And yet you still took the job.

In my twenty-eight years of working with postal employees (great and small) I have identified two distinct groups of people that have been promoted multiple times to various management positions. There are the movers and the doers. The movers are ambitious, doing just enough to keep moving ahead. The doers are the backbone of the USPS. They are the true believers looking out for the organization and its customers. The doers are the ones that get the work done and fix the chaos generated by the movers. Doers are the ones that understand how the postal organization works internally and externally and know that without customers there is no USPS.

Due purely to self-preservation; movers promote enough doers to keep the postal organization on track, making themselves look good. My experience has been that movers don't do much of anything. As they advance they accumulate an entourage of lesser movers and customers looking for special favors. A mover's entourage rarely includes doers.

Movers are easily recognizable as they move in herds from one Postal Forum function to another. They rarely talk to or with anyone not able to significantly advance their postal career. I have met many movers in the ranks of postal management, feeling their disdain for insignificant mail service providers as I intruded upon their grand sphere of influence. I have never had to fight through crowds of bureaucrats when I wanted a word with you. Access has always been easy, your interest sincere.

Mr. Donahoe, it is obvious to me that you have become the Post Master General of the United States not because you are a mover, but because you are a doer.

I wanted to congratulate you last year at the Postal Forum but was unable to find an opportunity. The crowds around you were difficult to penetrate. The movers in your organization and some of those very special (needs) large customers had to regroup after being blindsided by your ascension to the top post. They had all written you off as an unimportant person when you became Deputy PMG. Since Deputy's never become the head guy, you were obviously headed for the slow slide to retirement. Their assumption was you could no longer help their careers so the movers and special needs customers scurried off to heap praise on more likely future PMGs.

Watching the movers jockey for position over the years has become some of the best entertainment (sport) available at the Postal Forum and other events. It was easy to see who was in ascendency and who had taken a political tumble from the size and make-up of their entourage. In scoring your promotion, I believe the movers lost the series with customers and the rest of the country getting a significant win over an entrenched bureaucracy.

It is obvious to everyone that knows anything about the USPS that there has to be a radical change in the Postal Service and the way it does business. After all the bluster over your proposed changes it is instructive to note that not one politician has submitted a bill to fund the status quo. I would suggest this represents a vote of confidence from our elected representatives in your ability to lead and make the necessary changes. No matter how they posture or what they say about you, this group of self-centered politicians knows that bowing to union pressure and preventing the necessary reduction in postal capacity is not in their own self-interest. Besides, they also know that the unions and other irate constituents will easily be placated by political blustery.

Waiting a year to congratulate you has given me time to temper my enthusiasm and critique your performance. As with most doers you wasted no time in putting your shoulder to the task at hand. I don't agree with all of the initiatives your teams have developed but agree radical changes need to be made. Your reorganization of processing plants is certainly radical and absolutely necessary. I am not sure about moving to five day delivery, I believe six days of delivery gives you a competitive advantage. I also do not believe you can get my (customer's) mail delivered in a reasonable amount of time shutting down mail processing two consecutive days a week.

Closing post offices is insignificant to business mailers, but as a citizen I believe the US Congress should pay the cost of keeping many of these post offices open, especially in the rural parts of the country. I strongly disagree with your marketing departments move into providing direct mail services through the Direct Mail Hub. I vehemently disagree with your use of my private customer information in your marketing campaigns. This breech of ethics is unforgiveable and needs your immediate intervention. MSPs across the country implore you to build a firewall between our customer data and your parasitic marketing department.

In closing, I sincerely hope your body can handle the herculean task your mind has committed it to. Keep up the good work and ignore the mudslingers and naysayers. As belated as it is, congratulation on your promotion and a very successful first year. I would wish you good luck, but have found that hard work trumps luck. A fact of life the movers of the world never figure out.

Mr. Donahoe thank you for your hard work, it is appreciated.

Todd Butler
Butler Mailing Services
eKEY® Technologies