Collaboration is Important

Working with others is essential for leadership

If there’s one thing I’ve learned after years in the theater business, it’s that nothing worthwhile happens without collaboration. Every show, every act, every scene is the result of several different people working together. The actors on stage, the musicians in the orchestra pit, the stagehands running the light boards and the back of house all have equally important jobs to do, whether the audience sees them or not. The best shows are the result of teamwork, people pulling together, being passionate, and committed to delivering the very best they have to offer.

As any actor, director or playwright will tell you, theater is all about relationships: trust, consistent communication and mutual respect. The same is true for city government. It is impossible to lead a city without broadly cultivating and nurturing relationships. As mayor, I will work to establish strong working relationships with our department heads, city council members, metro-area mayors and leaders at the county and state levels.

City Council Relationships Count

If you have been following the mayor’s race up to this point, you’ve probably heard people say that Minneapolis has a “weak mayor system.” What this means, in a nutshell, is that the city council has more collective power than does the mayor.  As you can imagine, this makes executing a vision for the city a challenge for any mayor, especially if mayor and council don’t see eye to eye.

I have thought a lot about how I will approach this situation as your mayor and I have come to realize that the best approach is to build relationships with each council member. I will work one-on-one with each council member to find common ground so that we can move our city forward in a balanced and progressive way.  I’ll work with council members to help them be successful in delivering positive outcomes to their constituents. That way, even when there’s conflict at city hall, I’ll be able to find common ground with each of the 13 elected city council members.

Metro-area Mayors are valuable allies

Minneapolis can be the leader at the state and federal levels, but we need the support of other metro-area mayors if we really want to be more than a lone voice in the wind. We need to create a chorus that will be more effective and harder for state and federal lawmakers to ignore. I plan to work with all of the mayors in the metro area to create a coalition that can advocate for the needs of Twin Citians at higher levels of government to create real, positive impact for people.

Hennepin County and State Leaders can be our partners

Hennepin County Commissioners are in charge of a lot.  We need to have a cooperative, mutually beneficial relationship with them.   The County can be our effective partner in job training, targeted human service delivery and housing development and health services delivery, just to name a few areas.   The State needs to fully appreciate that Minneapolis is, indeed, the economic engine of our State. We are the driver of jobs and dollars!  We need a partnership that builds our success so that we can maximize the role we play in making our State successful.  This requires building relationships with those at the capitol -- even those who may see the world a bit differently (or a lot differently!) -- than we see it in Minneapolis.  Looking for and developing commonality with others is key to our mutual success.

People of Minneapolis are in charge

The most important person I will collaborate with as mayor of Minneapolis is you.  Decisions about your city should be made with you, not for you.  As mayor, I’ll visible and accessible to you 24/7!  Together, we’ll mount the best version of Minneapolis this world has ever seen!

Tom Hoch