This article focuses on “partisan policy professionals” (PPPs), i.e. people who are employed to affectpolitics and policy, and analyzes their particular motivations and skills. This article focuses on the occupationalpractices of PPPs: what are their main motivations and driving forces, and what are thekey skills they deploy in their work? The main motivation for PPPs is a desire to wield power and influencethe course of affairs, while their working-life satisfaction comes from getting their messageinto the media without becoming personally exposed. The key resource of PPPs is contextdependentpolitically useful knowledge, in three main forms: “Problem formulation” involves highlightingand framing social problems and their possible solutions. “Process expertise” consists of understandingthe “where, how, and why” of the political and policy-making processes. “Informationaccess” is the skill to be very fast in finding reliable and relevant information. These motivations andskills underpin a particular professionalism based in an “entrepreneurial ethos”, which differs fromboth the ethos of elected politicians, and that of civil servants, and which has some potentially problematicimplications for democratic governance.