What Does Excellence Mean For Portola Valley?
"Striving to better, oft we mar what's well." Albany, King Lear, Act I, Scene IV, William Shakespeare. We need to find a balance between striving for excellence and being paralyzed by perfection. I believe in aiming for excellence, perfection and the best outcomes, but then being pragmatic to get a solution.
A Vision for Excellence Drives a Good Solution
In my many years of consulting, I have learned that a pragmatic approach to solving a client's problem is to aim for an excellent report, then conclude it in a timely fashion to solve a problem. It may not make perfection, but it will be good enough and well-accepted. The same with town decisions. We may want the perfect place for low-income housing, and work for excellence in fire protection, terrain suitability, transportation analysis, wildlife preservation, yet have to make some compromises. By working through a framework devoted to excellence we can arrive at very good solutions.
What Is An Excellent Town Council?
An excellent town council needs to be trusted to:
Trust also comes from being responsive to residents' inputs, needs and safety. It is vital for the Town Council to carefully consider the budget. Inputs include taxes and permit fees paid to the town. I want to ensure that these funds are used wisely to keep our town beautiful and safe.
To help reduce town costs we rely on many volunteers. Many hands make light work - so we need volunteers of all ages to help our town so nobody feels overburdened with volunteer activities. I plan to encourage town committees who help residents thrive through exercise, the arts and town events.
Trust is built with clear communications and an eagerly embraced vision. Every employee at General Magic, where I worked in the 1990s, learned about the value of having an excellent vision. Some would argue it was the most important failed company in Silicon Valley. Be inspired by watching General Magic, the movie. The first products from Sony and Motorola failed, but engineers went on to develop iPhone and Android smartphones, as well as many other technologies that control our lives today. Clear communications come from having a clear vision which we can articulate in the town's General Plan. We need clear communications in emergencies. I can help the town communicate clearly to residents, as mayor Jeff Aalfs did in his letters to residents during recent fires.
Angela Hey is a candidate for Portola Valley Town Council. She is an experienced technology marketing consultant who serves nonprofits, as a volunteer.