The year 2020 has been filled with uncertainty thus far. Uncertainty regarding whether or not counties will need to chip in a large portion for Medicaid expansion. Uncertainty regarding what property tax changes and restrictions may be coming our way. Uncertainty about whether or not the state will be shut down due to COVID-19. Uncertainty regarding how to re-open your county and when. The list of 2020 uncertainties could go on and on. With all of the uncertainty comes a large amount of fear of the unknown. What else does 2020 have in store for us? While we don’t know the answer to that question, the uncertainty we feel may have a positive effect if we are able to use it to prioritize what our needs are versus our wants.
Being realistic about the fact that things will happen that are out of our control whether we want them to or not allows us to face reality as it really is. This, in turn, can aid us in making tough decisions. During times of uncertainty, people are looking for leaders they can trust. They desire order and stability. As leaders, we have an opportunity to instill more trust in county governments by leading by example. As we analyze what the needs of the county are and plan thoroughly for those needs, we will be able to assure our citizens that they have elected competent leaders to steer them through these difficult times. All of this uncertainty provides you with an unplanned opportunity to build trust with your constituents. When they see you making decisions that are in the best interest of the county, they will feel more comfortable with your leadership and public service. History will recognize 2020 as a unique year when leaders were forged in the fires of uncertainty and adversity. Leaders who demonstrated competence, resilience, empathy, and positivity will not be forgotten.