Accept the Gift of Lessons Offered

Accept the Gift of Lessons Offered

Leaders shared their journeys at AIC 2022

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Following an exciting and informative Annual International Conference (AIC), AAMVA members continue to connect through jurisdiction-to-jurisdiction visits, user group meetings, chief administrator roundtables and the AAMVA Region 3 conference. These planned meetings result in exchanges of ideas and solutions that fuel the forward momentum we talked about at the AIC.

The 2022 AAMVA AIC highlighted how public agencies and private interests are leveraging, testing and deploying a host of new technologies to help customers understand what they need and get services when and where they want. So, too, are employees at the center of these innovations, both for service delivery and in seeking new technologies to support more flexible work options and allow for remote work, to help DMVs become the employers of choice for a talented, service-oriented workforce.

Among the sessions that stand out for me from our week in Baltimore is one that was devoid of high tech and rich in conversation that focused on the resilience, humility, hard work and wisdom it takes to be a successful leader and person of influence. It was a panel discussion called Leadership in Safety.

This panel featured four leaders whose years of service and influence extend beyond the AAMVA Community: Georgia Department of Driver Services Commissioner, Spencer Moore; Chief of the Washington State Patrol, John Batiste; private consultant/former PennDOT Deputy Secretary, Betty Serian; and moderator Maryland MVA Administrator and conference host, Chrissy Nizer.

These leaders shared their unique journeys to the C-suite, and discussed what and who helped them succeed. They answered questions about hardships they faced along the way as they courageously belied race and gender barriers on behalf of their agencies, coworkers and the public they serve. I was struck by the lessons they shared:

Work hard, go outside of your lane, take risks, seek formal and informal mentors.

Share your love and gratitude for those in the trenches and on the front line.

If you see a turtle on a fencepost, they did not get there by themselves.

To lead you need to be a good follower.

No one can define you. You define you.

When you read this issue of MOVE Magazine with a focus on driver safety and customer service, take in the various articles through the lens of lessons offered by these remarkable safety leaders. Chief among them: to influence the behavior of others to serve a higher good, strive to have courage, show love for your employees, be kind, be humble, persevere and let your passion for service and safety be your north star.

Spencer, John, Chrissy and Betty are extraordinary in their achievements, humility and willingness to share, in frank terms, the experiences that shaped them. I hope you are as inspired as I was by the passion for safety and service that drives them. It is exciting to know that the example they set and the mentoring they freely give to others is shaping generations of safety leaders to come.

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