An Ode to Steve Dempsey

I tip my hat to the outgoing CEO of the GHP in my column today.   Whenever someone leaves the top position at an economic development organization like this, I hope to see some sort of public debriefing exercise where the guy/gal goes through the highs and lows of the job, raises some of the road blocks and challenges in the position for the public to read (they never do this while in the job) but we rarely get it.  The Chronicle-Herald ran a little article on his departure but I think a full ‘exit’ interview would be interesting.  Again, not to throw stones but to have Dempsey say what he sees are the challenges to Halifax moving forward from his perspective after 11 years running GHP.

I have a particular reason for wanting this type of debrief.  I have talked with several ex-CEOs of high profile economic development agencies over the years and the constant theme is “I wish I could bare my soul on this stuff”.   I say bare it.  It will be to the benefit of the next guy/gal and to the public at large to hear it.

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4 Responses to An Ode to Steve Dempsey

  1. Anonymous says:

    …”I wish I could bare my soul on this stuff”. I say bare it. It will be to the benefit of the next guy/gal and to the public at large to hear it.”

    Why do you think that is? And it’s not only economic development, it’s politics, blogs, business and even sport. It seems like there is this depressed cloud hanging over this region that keeps people from expressing themselves fully. Or at least to the level other regions of this country and continent do.

  2. I am not even (necessarily) talking about acrimony. Guys like Dempsey and even the outgoing BNB DM Brian Dick could come out and say that I wish we could have done this or that better or we really need to change this or that or we won’t have the impact we want. Brian Dick’s comments upon his retirement were party line right to the end. I find it really hard to believe that there aren’t at least a few things that he would’ve done differently.

  3. Samonymous says:

    No, I hear ya. Plus, why don’t provinces get guys like this in a room and hash it out (the good and the bad), like you said. And move forward some policy proposals on how to reform these agencies. A hundred page document would suffice.

    I mean honestly, my beef isn’t that all these efforts at the federal and provincial level are useless (and all for not), it’s more a criticism that any program that depends on civil servants to decide which businesses should succeed and which businesses should fail is a program that is mistaken in principle. Why not, at the very least, take the NSBI approach, and take the business inexperience (i.e. bureaucrat/civil servant) out of the final business decision. At least then public money won’t get flushed down the toilet because politics.

  4. Anonymous says:

    “why don’t provinces get guys like this in a room and hash it out (the good and the bad)”

    > The answer is unfortunately simple: because they don’t care.

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