The Greensboro City Council is looking for a new vision statement, mission statement, goals, values and all that stuff.

The City Council might want to consider, “If you can’t beat them join them,” for a mission statement because that is what the City Council is doing.

High Point has been having more success than Greensboro when it comes to economic development. Now, Greensboro has hired the same strategic consultant High Point has been using, Meredith Powell, who is going to run the City Council retreat on Monday, Feb. 24 at the ACC Hall of Champions at the Greensboro Coliseum.

Except the retreat, to the surprise of many, started out at the City Council work session on Tuesday, Feb. 18 in Plaza Level Conference Room. The item was listed on the agenda as “preview” to the City Council retreat, but it was actually a mini-retreat.

The council broke into small groups. Powell wrote things people said on a large poster-board sized pad and the small groups were tasked with going over the city’s mission and vision statements. The only thing missing were the colored dots that always seem to be part of these facilitated group-think sessions.

When asked what the councilmembers liked about the current vision statement, the answer was quick and came from several councilmembers all at once like a chorus. They said, “Nothing.”

When the council broke into small groups, the group made up of Mayor Nancy Vaughan and Councilmembers Nancy Hoffmann, Yvonne Johnson and Marikay Abuzuaiter were each immediately captivated by their own personal communication devices. Perhaps they were all searching for High Point’s vision statement, but that didn’t seem likely.

At the beginning Powell was given an idea of what she was she could look forward to working with this group. Powell was explaining why it was important “to get us down to three goals.”

Johnson said, “It’s what we want. It’s not what you might want. It’s what this council wants.”

And that was just the beginning. Powell faced constant objections to the idea of only three goals.