Mayor Warman

Mayor's Blog - 2015 Blogs

Columns written by Mayor Tyler Warman in 2015, on a wide range of topics, including town council information, upcoming events, important budgetary issues, and local attractions. His blogs can be found here, and published in the Lakeside Leader the Wednesday after it appears online.  

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Sep 27

Communications in the 20th Century

Posted on September 27, 2017 at 4:22 PM by Jordan Schenkelberg

I have to confess that I have gained a lot of insight from being in the position of Mayor.  Politics has without a doubt changed my approach to life, how I deal with people and even how I run my business.  I have a greater appreciation for past political officials and have an even greater appreciation for good customer service. 
 
I also believe whole heartedly I have the answer to why governments change and why so few people have faith in what any of their elected officials are doing.  I understand how rumors get spread and misinformation becomes coffee shop fact.  This reason can be found in countless municipalities, and what’s worse is the higher you go up in government I think the worse it gets.  That single biggest mistake is poor communication. 
 
Most governments from my experience are horrible communicators and it consistently costs them credibility, money, time and political capital.  Now in order to defend those governments’ I have to say it is very difficult to let the average person know what’s going on.  This is because people’s average attention span is short, they want their information fast and they want it at the touch of a button.   
 
I have to confess I am quite proud of our council and their commitment to improving communications within the town.  We invested money in advertising, website design, our program guide and countless mail outs and digital media.  We are working quicker at updating our website, keeping the information current.  We invested in people by providing a communications coordinator for the town, and their sole job is to improve and constantly work on our communications.  We have exploded on social media with posts, updates, and bulletins.  We are working better with the RCMP to get their successes posted out there.  We have worked on promotional videos and print materials for the region that target businesses, tourists and new comers to Slave Lake.  We use the radio, the newspaper, and our website to promote the Mayor’s blogs where I try to share information on something you may be interested in.  I made a point to look when writing this and this is the 86th blog that I have done in the last two years.  I am on the radio every Wednesday and my blogs are usually printed in the newspaper.  
 
This all talks about the output of information though and I want to highlight we have also spent a bunch of time looking for input as well.  We have done three surveys know reaching out to the public for feedback on snow removal, development standards and Recreational uses.  Your input has helped us to make changes that positively affect the lives of residents and give us direction in your expectations moving forward.  As we move into 2016 we are conscious of every dollar spent.  We have asked departments to really look at their budgets and see where cuts can be made.  Some of those could potentially affect communication moving forward so I am reaching out to you for help. 
 
Thankfully this is the last survey I will ask you to do in 2015 but I really need your help.  I need to know, as a resident, how you want us to communicate with you.  What works for you and what is a waste of money.  If we don’t hear from you, we may stop communicating with you in ways that right now you appreciate. 
 
Communication will continue to be a focus for us moving forward, but we want to make sure we are doing it effectively and efficiently.  In order to gauge that we need to hear from you.  Should I keep writing these blogs?  Should I be going to the radio station every Wednesday?  Should we have a communications coordinator?  Does our website need to be updated?  These are the questions we need answered and you’re the best person to tell us.  Thanks for taking the time to help us make this community better.  The survey can be accessed from our town website or click here.