When choosing those that represent you, it is more important to understand their mission and values.
We have noticed over the decades, many politicians and corporations promise the world, only to find that a new “thing” has happened and that becomes the excuse for no delivery.
However, the default parameters of these well intentioned politicians has been their core values. The world is complex and the changes will continue to increase in frequency. No one can promise what they will do next week, let alone next year.
So I ask you one thing. If you are going to give your vote, your precious piece of democracy, give it to someone who your values align.
My why stems from my appreciation of human life. Watching my single mother raise two kids and foregoing her own gratification to ensure the next generation does better, has always left an imprint on me.
It pushed me to do better, to find ways of becoming happier and to help those around me.
As I matured, I realized that so many other people had not had the privilege I had. Youth suicide has dramatically increased over my life-time and the cultural divide between those that have and have not, hasn’t driven more free thinkers or a get up and go attitude. It has resulted in the opposite.
My mission is to reduce suicides by improving peoples day to day life.
My aims through business have always been about finding the right outcomes that benefit each party. I admire those that stand at the bottom of the cliff with mental health, however, I focus on road ahead, trying to remove negatives and focus on the positives to make one small change in someone’s life, that may result in their position never reaching the cliff face in the first place.
This is why I start businesses, this is why I transform organisations and this is why I am in council.
This word has been over used in recent times, however, I stand by the fact I do not believe any relationship can be maintained without trust and to trust, you must have open transparency with that person.
Within my own company, I have everything on the table, we have a flat hierarchy and everyone is involved in the decision making.
I want to bring this to our local governance level. I will not sign any disclosures and I will not be a part of any secret meetings. I will share summaries of all documentation, meetings, why decisions were made and by who. Workshops in council are not open to the public but the reasonings and outcomes should be made public.
The only two exceptions that I agree with are
1 – Private information on a natural person. If you share something with me about your personal life, I will not share it with anyone else
2 – Corporate responsibility. Information gathered that has commercial sensitivity can not be shared for legal reasons, however, I will always ask WHEN can it be made available as there is always a date that it ends.
One of the key problems with organisations is their lack of objective data to back a decision. As an ex accountant and business analyst, I bring a level of scrutiny that I have yet to find a match.
In local government, we have one way of obtaining funds for the greater good and we can not waste it on items that are not objectivity going to improve our life’s for the better.
This was my take on the velodrome. I carefully provided back the economic benefits and stated quite clearly that even emotional “feelings” can be measured. Which the velodrome’s 30 million dollars would never see benefits that out weigh the opportunity cost of repairing in the first place.
Why do we even have governance? Its for the people, by the people. Everything we do socially, in business or in life; has a direct and in direct impact on the people around us.
The definition of morality comes from the idea of what benefits people. We debate solutions, instead of focusing on outcomes. I am agnostic of political parties, of corporations and of tribal dynamics that swing my decision one way of another.
I am for the people of Whanganui. I live in Whanganui East and my children are growing up here. I have a selfish vested interest that all our people, now and future generations are set up for success.
Throughout history humans have tested all sorts of governance models. Our short time on this earth, democracy has led to increased value in our life’s and a reduction in violence.
In New Zealand we have a representational democracy. This means that someone represents you based on your vote. You trust them to do what you would do. Over the past few decades, political parties represent themselves and their board of directors and not the voters.
We are continuously seeing policies put in place that do not have the majority of the population agreeing and yet people feel disempowered to do anything about it.
Local government is the last area where there is a chance for direct democracy. Direct democracy is where those that are impacted by a policy are the ones that vote on that policy. I believe in direct democracy, it is not up to Wellington to decide how Whanganui lives and I shall seek out those that are impacted by what council wishes to do and obtain YOUR feedback and YOUR vote. Your vote, will be MY vote in council.
I am merely one man in a society that will not be here in 100 years. What we do today, impacts our children and our childrens, children. It is selfish to push costs onto them, so that we may enjoy the fruits today.
There is little difference between a family budget, a company budget and a society budget. You live within your means, you invest for the future and you pivot if things don’t look good.
What I can promise is that everything I do is for the future, I will not burden our children with debt, just so I can enjoy a nice flash car today. We should be investing today, so that generations in the future have it better than we do, not the other way around.