By Chad Edwards
Ego is a tough thing to handle sometimes, and we all struggle with it at some point in our lives. This is especially true of elected officials and public employees. The nature of your role is to serve the public as best as you can and put personal views and feelings aside. Sometimes you must work with people you do not like. You do things outside your comfort zone. You concede to the majority even if you disagree with the decision. You work to make other people’s ideas happen, often with no recognition. It is all about what you can do for your community to make your city, your state, and your county a better place to live.
Unfortunately, our egos often get in the way of that mission. We make decisions that are more self-interested in nature than focused on the common good. Decisions are made based on whether a person likes a person; forget about that person’s ideas. Different entities battle over turf with complete disregard for their primary mission, serving the public. Oftentimes, a politician or a civil servant will split hairs over an issue to try to discredit someone’s work because they do not like or agree with that person. Sometimes self-interest and public good overlap, but the former should never be the main priority if your goal is to be the best public servant you can be.
We all fall victim to our own egos sometimes. And what I write here is more about me than anyone else. Every day, I do what I can to keep my ego in check and work for the betterment of our community as a whole. State, city, and county. We have elected officials who hire city managers, county administrators, administrators of various state agencies, and so on. We are all in this together at every level. If ever I am unable to fulfill my public duties as an administrator, I will resign from public employment and find something else to do. It’s only fair to the people who pay my salary which is you, the reader. With that I would like to close by saying that I am grateful every day for the opportunity to serve the City of Shinnston, Harrison County, and the great State of West Virginia.