Nelson Leader : September 5th 2013
2 THE NELSON LEADER, SEPTEMBER 5, 2013 POLITICS Picton NELSON CITY Stoke Richmond Wakefield Brightwater Nelson Lakes Murchison Karamea Westport Rai Valley Okiwi Bay French Pass D'Urville Island Mapua Collingwood Takaka Motueka Tapawera 5454562AA Having problems with your community paper delivery? email: firstname.lastname@example.org phone: 0800 800 515 and let us know. This means if you place your advert into both papers 56,000 people will be reading! No other local media can give you this sort of coverage! Nelson Leader Readership - 26,000 people per week Tasman Leader Readership - 30,000 people per week 56,000 Reach a whopping 74% of the Nelson Tasman Region! Abel Tasman National Park Atawhai Farewell Spit Contact us! Reporters: Nelson 03 546 2885 Richmond 03 543 9601 Motueka: 03 528-1263 email: email@example.com Advertising: Nelson 03 546 2835 Richmond 03 543 9600 Motueka 03 528 1261 Classifieds 03 548 0119 fax 03 546 2705 email: firstname.lastname@example.org 5592217AA Authorised by Matt Lawrey, 31 Orsman Cres, Nelson Legends in their own lunchtime Kenn Butler Kenn Butler gives his views on what we should be looking for in our politicians. One of the striking oddities about New Zea- land these days as we head into another local body election cycle is noting how more and more people become confi- dent about their own special identity. I sometimes think it is an increasing climate of silliness combined with a cringe factor of colonial proportions. All these people we have never heard of, and with such great potential? So, what sort of qualities makes for a good councillor? Do you just need to be well known and a well-intentioned citizen? And I wonder how many candidates honestly believe they can promise any outcome, given they are essentially each just one vote at the table. I suspect you need a good reason to stand and I would have thought it was important to have read the councils long- term plan which sets out the direction your council has already agreed. In addition, I suspect rates have already been set for the next year, based on this plan and the annual reviews, so a banner on lowering rates is simply just not good enough! It is the council s job then to set direction, provide resources and audit outcomes. This is governance. In the political maelstrom we are currently experiencing, much of the mud-slinging which is levelled at current performan- ces is often focused on the per- sonality and style of leadership. It raises questions for many about leadership communication -- how different personal styles influence people and the import- ance of authenticity in order to maintain credibility. There is no doubt some people carry a very different person- ality and style to others. John Key for example appears per- sonable, warm, charming . . . and could muster up a grin at any given opportunity a chesh- ire cat worth his salt would envy. At ease in almost any social situation, nobody would be sur- prised to see him at a pop con- cert, social event or during New Zealand Cup week in Christ- church, grinning away heartily as the statesman in touch with his people. Bill English, on the other hand, is more of an introvert, his passion for his job and all things related, hidden behind a grim and sombre veil. The very thought of him lift- ing the phone to enquire after the health of a New Zealand s Got Talent contestant (or chort- ling smilingly away to a stranger s baby in a photo oppor- tunity) makes me smile. It is my perception this is so . . . just not him. But whatever your political views and personal opinion of our politicians today, it begs the question of whether a good leader has to be an extrovert to be credible and keep people on board in times of change and turmoil. In my view, the answer is no. Authenticity is what makes people credible, whether shy, quiet and serious, or an ebul- lient, magnetic and truly charis- matic character. As a leader you will only cut the mustard if your people see you as you really are -- not trying to be something you re not. Authenticity is everything; in the stories you tell, the manner in which you tell them, your body language and personal style of interaction. Of course this is not to say leadership communication can- not be improved -- and training or coaching can do a lot to help. But here s a warning. If charisma , sunny person- ality and magnetism are not words you would use to describe yourself, do not try to adopt such traits to get people to follow you. They ll follow you if they see you are sincere, caring, trust- worthy, authentic, fair and unp- rejudiced -- and someone who is willing to listen, communicate regularly, honestly and with respect for your people s opin- ions as much as giving your own. Leave the big personality traits to the big personalities. Good leadership is about depth, honesty and trust. Politicians (and potential councillors) take note. Kenn Butler of Nelson has had a long career in insurance, has worked as a police alcohol intelligence analyst and is a former president of the Nelson Tasman Chamber of Commerce. See: www.kennbutler.com.
August 29th 2013
September 12th 2013