Last week was our annual Breakfast With The Mayors. Our opportunity to engage with Mayor Carter and Mayor Frey. Now more than ever we need leadership from our elected leaders and a keen grasp of the value business brings to the economic success of our region.
The event was stronger than ever. And our new format, a conversation moderated by Roshini Rajkumar, is fun and dynamic. Some takeaways from our mayors that we absolutely agree with: “we ARE better when we work together.” They were asked about how their approach to working with their new city councils and I really appreciated the responses we got from both. Mayor Carter talked about the need “to get beyond managing the conflict, to harnessing the energy.” Mayor Frey confirmed this as well, sharing this idea that conflict should be expected if we are to be better tomorrow than we are today. The point? Conflict is healthy, honest, and even critical to growth moving forward. If I care about you, if I care about where we are going together, my obligation to our relationship is that I speak the truth. Which sometimes causes conflict. And which isn’t always easy or comfortable. The challenge, as we’ve discussed before, is that we always assume good intent.
Both Mayors also talked about the importance of sharing good news. Mayor Carter uses a nice turn of phrase: “bad news travels, but good news needs to be carried.” I agree with that! The good news they wanted to convey is that crime is down (true). And as I mentioned in last week's blog, there is still more to do to support unsheltered residents and make environmental improvements to enhance the perception of safety.
Mayor Carter also was asked about plans for the new sales tax.The Chamber recently had a productive meeting with Public Works and Parks, where we mutually agreed transparency on sales tax expenditures is important. We offered the Chamber's assistance in conveying project information to our members and convening conversations between the City and the business community.
Overall, I felt good about how the event went, and attendees really value the opportunity to see these mayors more relaxed, more personal. I hope you’ll consider joining us next year!
See you in the trenches!