Yesterday I wrote about the nightmare-waiting-to-happen parking situation on Main Street. I would bet that once the full impact of the scarcity is realized, there will be protestations by people who want something done about it.

Where were these people when the building permit was being reviewed? Most likely, they were oblivious to the fact it was even happening.

It is ironic that all of the money and attention is paid to the prominent elected positions when so much of what really impacts people happens at a much lower level. Committees and boards comprised of mostly volunteers often create the rulings that affect the average citizen.  Zoning boards members are not elected but decide if multiple businesses can be on the same block with only 10 parking spaces. Even in higher offices, appointed staff members draft legislation for elected officials to vote on, but it is the behind-the-scenes author that shapes the details and truly determine the real impact.

And yet at the working meetings, it is rare if anyone shows up to voice an opinion. People don’t pay attention until something is passed that they don’t like and then they come to complain. How much more effective it would be if different voices were heard in the beginning. If there was an efficient system to let people know what was on the docket, not just what is a foregone conclusion via the minutes.

Government goes to those who show up. Yes, it takes an effort to know what is coming but making changes is much easier on the front end. Do your work to be informed or do your work to protest. You pick when you want to use your voice.

I'm the chief connector at leadership dots where I serve as "the string" for individuals and organizations. Like stringing pearls together to make a necklace, "being the string" is an intentional way of thinking and behaving – making linkages between things that otherwise appear random or unconnected – whether that be supervising a staff, completing a dissertation or advancing a project in the workplace. I share daily leadership dots on my blog to provide examples of “the string” in action. I use the string philosophy through coaching, consulting and teaching to help others build capacity in themselves and their organizations. I craft analogies and metaphors that help people comprehend complex topics and understand their role in the system. My favorite work involves helping those new to supervision or newly promoted supervisors build confidence and learn the skills necessary to effectively lead their team.

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