Gov. Bill Haslam addressed delegates Tuesday afternoon and answered questions from the audience.
These questions are excerpts of several questions that can be found in Wednesday's Boys' Stater.
Q: How can you get the legislature on track to address important economic issues instead of social issues?
A: We discuss that a lot. I ran with the thought that my main job was to create jobs and make continuous progress in education. Others ran for other reasons. This is a democracy. There are also scores of newspapers and television stations covering you. It was an adjustment to the relentless media coverage. So, you have to balance leading, considering the interest of the legislature and dealing with media coverage.
Q: How did your first-hand experience in business affect your beliefs about leading?
A: It is both same and different. It’s different in business because you don’t have media writing about your small decisions. In government those end up on the front page of the newspaper. In government, the process matters as much as the result. The money belongs to the people. They are similar in other ways. In both, it’s all about hiring great people to come with you. You can’t do everything yourself. What you really should ask leaders you are choosing is “Tell me about the people you have hired before.” The other thing is people say we want you to run government like a business. But when you do, people don’t like it. You have to understand the financial numbers and restrictions of what you do. You have to understand restraints and possibilities. And in Tennessee, revenue and expenses have to balance.
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