Leaders and elected mayors are integral to the strategic direction of the council – in articulating the vision, setting priorities and overseeing the delivery of these objectives. Effective leaders will be skilled in drawing together diverse views and working across party political lines to ensure all residents’ views are reflected in council policies. They are able to oversee the day-to-day operations to ensure the council is acting responsibly, legally and in line with political priorities, and must nurture healthy working relationships with councillors, colleagues and officers.
As the public face of the council, leaders will have strong relationships with community groups and put residents at the heart of what they do. They will be prepared to answer the difficult questions and ensure that they are held accountable for decisions that are made.
The councillor who wins this category will demonstrate that they have:
- an outstanding commitment to their role as a councillor and council leader;
- set a clear vision for the council’s role and priorities that meet the needs and preferences of the community;
- successfully led the council towards achieving this vision;
- strong relationships with community groups and council partners;
- a strong commitment to transparency, accountability and scrutiny;
- successfully united the council, accommodating different views and party splits, to deliver the best outcomes for the community.
Successful submissions should:
- provide clear examples of work or projects they have carried out that have benefitted residents (either internal council structures/processes or outward-facing projects);
- focus on how the leader has gone above and beyond their statutory role;
- outline how they have effectively managed the council, particularly during the Covid-19 crisis and beyond.