Well Done Is Better Than Well Said

MDSO address to the Executive Committee of the DSO’s Board of Directors delivered by musician representatives Shelley Heron and Larry Liberson – April 27, 2011.

In our capacity as this year’s musician representatives, we will provide a report at each board meeting in an effort to open up communications between the orchestra and Detroit Symphony board members.

We wish to begin this series of reports by acknowledging that things have been difficult for everyone at the DSO for some time now. During this period, words failed to provide a path to the future and as a result, each of us needed to act according to our convictions. The actions taken were necessary.

The DSO is at a crossroads even though we now have an agreement in place. Questions abound. How do we move forward? What will it take to bring us together? Where are we headed?

Ultimately, all words will fall away and it will be actions that will define if and how the many questions are answered. What will count at the end of the day is not what we say, but what we do and how well we do it. As Benjamin Franklin said, “Well done is better than well said.”

What we do and how well we do it has the potential to generate respect and it is respect that will open the door to trust. Respect and trust are what will unite this institution — respect and trust grounded in actions. The fewer the words said, the better.

Our success in moving forward will largely depend on whether we have been effective in getting each other’s attention with the goal being – trust and respect. Again, what we do and how well we do it will dictate the future – our future.

Today, we would ask, “What do you need from the two of US?” What do you need US to do?”


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