Recognizing the Importance of Leadership in a Time of Crisis

Steve Adubato speaks with Kevin O'Toole, Chairman, Board of Commissioners, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, about the importance of leadership in a time of crisis.  

3/28/2020 #401






"Welcome back to State of Affairs I’m Steve Adubato I’ve just listened to the Senate President Steve Sweeney I mean so many things happening so quickly we are not a news program as I’ve said to you Before State of Affairs tries to look at the longer-term bigger picture issues once we get through this crisis the corona virus crisis on the phone right now is a longtime friend Kevin O'Toole former state senator for many years in the state legislature he is in fact the chairman of the port authority of New York, New Jersey and he writes a regular column in insider NJ Kevin good to talk to you, your family doing okay? Everybody's fine Steve how about you everybody good? Absolutely we have a great team that's making things happen remotely let me ask you this Kevin you wrote a column in insider that talked about real leadership in times of crisis it is not our place to blame point fingers help us understand what in your view real leadership looks like on every level of government in a public health crisis well listen leaders have to understand when a crisis like this comes upon them they have to seize the moment they have to make really important decisions immediately things change by the second the guys surround themselves with people that they trust they got a delegate get more than they're comfortable with and they got to be open making changes given the new circumstances or the new events with a new facts that come before them that's part of being a leader you can't this is the prime time you can't melt away and it's not for everybody Steve. It isn't for anyone and by the way Kevin’s talked about leadership with us before and the one part that's really interesting when it comes to government leadership and I want senator former senator O'Toole to share the port authority to take this on what happens when government leaders don't know the answer Kevin O'Toole do you say to the people the citizens we don't know when it ends we don't know what's going to happen is, is that level of candor appropriate in a situation like this? Two things look people look at the leaders whether it's community or political or corporate to send a message to show stability so you have to give them frank answers and you don't have the answers to hurt to those in the industry the scientists the doctors to give the facts and figures the other thing that people do in our business in politics they try to outshine each other step on each other's message you can't do that it's no time for partisan politics the government let them say their piece let the mayor's you know the chair..."