Responsibility of stewardship


On a Tuesday evening, around about 10pm, you’ll often find me out the front of the Wingecarribee SES headquarters taking in the view, the whole view, of the buildings and the team working among them. To a passer bye I must look odd, standing alone, in the cold and dark, silently observing what’s around me.

I use this time to reflect on what we’re creating at the service. I’m in awe of what has been created for us and I muse on the responsibility of stewardship I have been given and what this means for me and the team I lead.

I don’t take the responsibility I have been given lightly, rather, sometimes the epaulette I wear lay heavily on my shoulders. That’s why I enjoy pausing and taking it all in. In this moment I can acknowledge the responsibility and add perspective and give meaning to  it’s challenges.

In these moments, quiet, away from the decision making and planning, I look at the buildings for inspiration. Maybe one day a member of my team’s name might adorn the top of one like Arthur Thompson’s does today. Maybe we’ll build one of our own. Perhaps we’ll have other memorials to us, but in the moment, in the still and the quiet, those thoughts fade away and all that remains is the joy of contribution and realisation that there are bigger things in the world than me.

I’m a reflective and philosophical person. I often get caught up in prescribing meaning and attributing cause when perhaps reason isn’t itself beneficial. There is however something special about leadership and responsibility that lends itself to moments like these. Moments to appreciate the trust others have in you and for you, a steward, to nurture that trust and grow it into a community of beneficiaries for years to come.

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