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close this bookTraining for Elected Leadership - The Councillor as Power Broker (HABITAT, 1994, 18 p.)
close this folderPart I - The Councillor as Power Broker
View the documentDefinition
View the documentSummary
View the documentReflection
View the documentConcepts and ideas
View the documentReflection
View the documentSome miscellaneous thoughts about power
View the documentYou and your hired help
View the documentForging an effective partnership
View the documentKey points
View the documentReferences

Key points

· The power broker role is the one councillors perform that is most prone to abuse.

· It is also the one that can help them be most effective in bringing about community change.

· It is also the most complex to manage, individually and collectively.

· Authority is the legal framework, and power base, within which councillors work to accomplish changes on behalf of the community.

· Councillors have many different kinds of power sources they can tap to get things done.

· The individual councillor’s greatest power contribution is refraining from exercising power for personal gain and directing it to help the council be more powerful on behalf of the community.

· Power is not just a top-down phenomenon. Power flows in all directions.

· Power is dynamic, subject to constant renegotiation between those who think they have power and those who don’t.

· It is more important to fill power voids in the community than to engineer power surges.

· Managing the power relationship with the local-government staff is as important as managing power relationships within the community. However, it may not be quite as interesting.

· The first thing to do in any power relationship is to see that your adversary is empowered.

· Sharing power is not the same as giving it away. This is the first maxim of power brokering.