I recently heard an interview of Cory Booker, Senator from New Jersey. He was asked about the divisiveness in Washington and about how he worked with Governor Christie when Booker was mayor of Newark. Booker explained that even when you had significant differences, it was still important to make connections and build relationships. He talked about the many projects developed with Governor Christie as well as his visits across the aisle in the Senate including lunch with Senator Cruz. Booker then recounted an African proverb to explain part of his thinking:
If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.
This very much captures the work of the NC State Faculty Ombuds Office where my goal is to “go far together.” I think of the faculty ombuds’ role as working in partnership with faculty members that reach out for help. And, I’m very much a believer in going far as compared to fast. I also very much support the idea of building and sometimes even rebuilding connections or relationships. In fact, I think relationship building is a key component of resolving conflicts and I often talk with faculty about how to make a connection or repair one that has fallen on hard times.
Let me know if I can help you think though an issue and make connections. And, I’m happy if we can go fast and far together!!