Leadership: what does Alberta need?

MLA Don MacIntyre’s column about what is happening in Legislature

We are midway through a leadership race. Halfway to choosing who could potentially be the next premier of Alberta. This deserves consideration.

The candidates bring unique resumes to the table.

Brian and Jason have both served federally with Stephen Harper before returning to Alberta. Jean sat in the House of Commons from 2006-2014 before resigning and becoming the leader of the former Wildrose Party. Jason spent from 1997-2016 serving Canada faithfully in the House of Commons under 3 consecutive conservative parties before becoming the leader of Alberta’s former Conservative Party. Doug is a restructuring lawyer and Jeff was formerly president of the Wildrose.

With differing leadership styles the question is, what makes a truly great leader?

Is it a good platform pitch? Charisma? That perfectly timed one-liner or ad? Unfortunately, these are contributing, sometimes determining, factors for many a leadership campaign. How many times, if you think about it, have you seen politicians go back on their promises? We all know there is more than one way to spin a story.

At this critical stage, we can’t afford to elect someone of weak character, or whose actions aren’t in line with their words. We can’t give the time of day to opportunists prematurely grabbing at perceived power.

The next leader of the UCP needs to be chosen with deliberation. We need to go beyond the pitch media, emotionalism and platforms display, and consider the men running. Be bold. Ask questions. Get answers.

How do these men persevere under pressure and opposition? Do they truly value grassroots vision determining party policy? Are they taking complex ideas and making them relevant? Are they walking with transparency and integrity? Do they have the ability to see and utilize the gifts of those around them? Are they clear about what they bring as individuals?

As you ask these questions remember: a good leader possesses the humility and strength to be an example, not just expect it of others. An individual who is reliable and dependable, following through on commitments of the day to day. The transparency and authenticity of a leader in the present enables that leader to hold to the decisions and promises of broader consequence tomorrow, because that leader knows too well his own limitations and the pitfalls of promising more than can be fulfilled. As well, good leaders live a life of vision, championing those around themselves, unafraid of greatness.

Most importantly, the leader Alberta needs must know how to serve, not just be served.

I look forward to seeing how you approach, process and ultimately determine the outcome of the UCP leadership race this fall, and potentially Alberta in 2019.

Don MacIntyre, MLA

Innisfail-Sylvan Lake

#2, 160 Hewlett Park Landing

Sylvan Lake, AB T4S 2J3

E: innisfail.sylvanlake@assembly.ab.ca

P: 403.887.9575

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