An Executive Director's point of view
March 27, 2017: Advocacy
The tactics will vary from one situation to another and will likely include a number of activities of unequal importance.
Two tactics members may rush to embrace are often the least important - legislative testimony and collection of petition signatures.
Testifying before legislative committees will score public relations points more than it will influence legislators.
And reading a lengthy, detailed statement will just bore legislators - if they are even listening.
The greatest benefit of a petition drive is the opportunity to construct a database. You can amass a list of supporters who can be contacted to participate in advocacy campaigns.
Decision-makers will judge the viability of the activity by the amount of support they believe it represents (and that has to be substantial) and by the perceived ability of the group to generate activity that can harm legislators or help them.
Submitting one thousand signatures to a legislator who represents one hundred thousand voters, for example, is pretty insignificant.
The most important tactic that can be employed is face-to-face contact with decision-makers (in person, not remote).
So, do all the things that comprise a successful advocacy campaign - coalition-building, face-to-face lobbying, public hearings, legislative testimony, submission of petitions, letter-writing and email campaigns, fly-ins, media spots, editorial support, and more.
But always be sure to speak in person to the decision-makers. That is the most important step.
March 23, 2017: Public policy fight
It is a fight in which adversaries strive to win as much as possible. Compromise is a back-up plan, only accepted when total victory is not achievable.
So, don't be squeamish about confronting opponents and engaging in battle. Develop a strategy to outmaneuver, outwit, and outlast them.
The goal is to win. If you back off because you don't like conflict, then you will lose.
March 20, 2017: Millennial-friendly job benefits
March 16, 2017: Team building
March 13, 2017: Retroactive funding
If your organization is promised a government grant or contract, don't begin work until a document is signed.
You can't be certain you'll be paid retroactively for work performed prior to the contracted start date.
If you are worried about potential clients or customers not being served or the organization missing a valuable opportunity, check with your attorney before you commit resources to a project.
Guarantees - verbal or written - may not be honored.
March 11, 2017: Religious advocacy?
March 09, 2017: Start me up
March 06, 2017: Don't play it safe
Unfortunately, most won't follow that advice.
Taking chances doesn't mean being reckless or jumping off cliffs.
It simply means being willing to do something in a way you may not have done it before - and preparing properly for it.
It means it's OK to disregard benchmarks, to challenge established "customs," to break rules, and to disagree with everybody else.
It means not doing things the way everybody else does just because everybody else does things that way.
So, don't hide from controversy, strive for unanimity, or follow "conventional wisdom."
Do things the way you think is best. Don't merely ape what others are doing.
March 03, 2017: Talk nice
February 27, 2017: The sign
Now they are extinct
Books for sale inside
Well, it caught my attention.