Immutable Truths About Grassroots and PAC Leadership

I have the privilege to collaborate with smart clients. As I help them achieve their highest priority grassroots and PAC outcomes, I have observed certain habits and work practices of my more successful clients. I’m not a rocket scientist, but I am adept at observation, detecting patterns, and problem solving based on those observations.

Some of the most delight-inducing observations are the success patterns among high-achieving grassroots and PAC leaders. These “immutable truths” are a reflection of what I have observed.

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Is Anyone Reading Mass E-mails Sent to Lawmakers?

Probably not, according to a survey by the Congressional Management Foundation. Most Congressional staffers polled – 75 percent – said they believe the cookie-cutter e-mails from constituents are sent without the constituents’ knowledge.

The staffers’ skepticism over the e-mails may be related to findings from another CMF survey. That survey found that the number of letters and e-mails received by Congress has quadrupled in the past 10 years. Meanwhile, the number of people hired to read them has stayed the same.

The ...

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Befriend the Gatekeeper

So how do you start to build a relationship with someone you actively oppose? First, you have to get out and about. Many sincere grassroots influencers want to remain comfortable. That’s a problem, because you can’t build the kind of relationships that powerful people require from behind your computer. They want to see you in person.

Bob Bonifas, an Aurora, Illinois, owner of an alarm and locksmith company, has been involved in politics for 20 years. As a member of the ...

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Solutions to the Social Loafing Lifestyle

In a previous post, I talked about social loafing. Now I’m going to talk about how we change the social loafing dynamic.

Identify Contributions

Identify team member contributions. What have coalition members done to advance the cause? Be specific, and enumerate contributions that you want duplicated. Are the contributions distributed to the coalition members or posted on an easily accessible Web site?

What about your faithful PAC recruiters? What about your PAC board members who help answer tough PAC questions or find ...

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2008 I2M Survey Results

This survey is different from typical benchmarking surveys, as it goes several steps beyond the numbers to find out why certain political involvement outcomes are or are not prevalent.

Since the survey questions were largely open-ended, there is a lot of “word-crunching” to do, and we are thus releasing the results in phases, along with, where warranted, my commentary and “reality check” advice at the conclusion of each finding.

So, let’s get to the top of it!

Political Involvement Culture (“PIC”) Is Generally ...

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Insights from Innovate to Motivate® 2009

Well, I admit to being an extremely biased observer, but here are some of my “keeper” observations from the 2009 confab, followed by comments from the conference attendees.

First, the people who attend I2M truly are “different.” They don’t engage in butt-covering conversations, they are secure enough to be candid and openly discuss what’s working and what’s not, they are willing to challenge each other, think differently, and take prudent risks to move forward (not that I feel strongly about that ...

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Why People Don’t Give To PACs

In this video, I’m telling you why people do and do not give to your political action committees.

[flv: 400 300]

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The Habits of Effective State Advocacy Groups

The results of the following research have been featured in many of my advocacy workshops, as well as various national and regional publications.

In our initial research review, we saw that the specific word “grassroots” was the second highest response as one of the habits of an effective advocacy group. However, upon further review of the responses, we noted that there were numerous responses such as: “active membership,” “lots of members”, and “regular people” that refer to grassroots.

Therefore, I am republishing ...

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Who Do Your Stakeholders Trust?

The Edelman Trust Barometer has been released, and I am always intrigued by the findings, as they have implications for grassroots influence professionals.

A change in the findings from past years is a decrease the trust people place in “people like me.”

Here is Dr. Kelton Rhoads’ take on that finding:

“One could guess that in a time of crisis, people turn back to established authorities. I read it as ‘I’m less confident in my own understanding (and friends’) of reality, and ...

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What Makes a Hero? Why Should Political Involvement Professionals Even Care?

I read with interest Harris Poll® results from a cross-section of adult Americans. The survey asked them who they admire and call their “heroes.” President Obama was number one, followed by Jesus Christ and Martin Luther King. Others in the top ten, in descending order: Ronald Regan, George W. Bush, Abraham Lincoln, John McCain, John F. Kennedy, Chesley Sullenberger and Mother Teresa. The heroes were named spontaneously, and participants were not given a list to choose from.

Today’s ...

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