Speculation about a cabinet reshuffle this autumn risks “disrupting” the work of her department, Work and Pensions Secretary Therese Coffey has suggested.
Although she was “not worried” about talk about her own future, she told Nick Robinson’s Political Thinking it could affect those working for her.
People “may not work quite at the same pace on the current leader’s ideas” if they think change is coming, she said.
Ms Coffey is the seventh person to hold the job in the past five years.
Under her leadership the DWP has handling an unprecedented increase in claims for Universal Credit and other benefits as a result of the coronavirus pandemic,.
But Ms Coffey has kept a low profile during the crisis and, despite being one of the most senior women in cabinet, was not asked to front any of the No 10 press briefings.
This has led to speculation that she could be moved in a cabinet reshuffle expected in September.
Asked about this by the BBC’s Nick Robinson, Ms Coffey said there had been a lot of ministerial turnover at the department in recent years and further uncertainty could have an impact.
“I think it’s fair to say that the DWP have been through a number of secretaries of state and the civil service have just got on with things, which is great,” she said.
“But I think there is a wider issue that sometimes happens with reshuffles, and I don’t blame in any way the civil service for this, which is if you think you’re going to get a change of leadership then you may not work quite at the same pace on the current leader’s ideas and all of the rest of it.
“It’s more that sort of thing that’s a bit more disruptive. It’s best not to worry about these things and I don’t.”
Ms Coffey replaced Amber Rudd after she resigned last September in protest at the government’s Brexit policy.
She is the sixth minister to have led the department since March 2016. None of her immediate predecessors spent more than a year in the job.
This week’s Political Thinking podcast will be published later on Friday and will be broadcast on Radio 4 at 17.30 BST on Saturday.