Take responsibility for Communications Failures

Take responsibility for Communications Failures

Progressives are often frustrated that our messaging and ideas aren’t breaking through, whether it’s in a meeting with a campaign target, to members on your email list, or in the traditional media. There are a lot of reasons this might happen, but there are a few I rarely hear mentioned: sometimes the point just isn’t relevant to the audience, is too complicated, or uses language that is difficult for the audience to understand. If what you are trying to communicate does not actually get communicated, the best thing you can do is take responsibility for how you communicated and change it up. Ask yourself the following questions when your message fails to catch on (or, ask them beforehand and give your message a better chance to succeed!): How could you be presenting what you’re trying to communicate in a more effective way? What language could you be using that would make it easier for others to hear what you’re communicating? Who is the best messenger given your audience? When crafting a communications plan or just preparing for a meeting, consider the audience and what you want them to hear. You may not always get the answer you want, but you will have at least delivered the point in a way your audience could hear it — and you can deal honestly with the consequences with respect to the substance from there. How have you re-assessed your communications to make them more effective? Share your self-correction tips in the comments! A post by: Shaunna Thomas, NOI alumna and community member

The New Organizing Institute’s Inaugural Training

The New Organizing Institute’s Inaugural Training

This intense week-long online organizer training was modeled on Campaign Corps’ “Campaign Schools” – a mixture of lectures, discussions, exercises and intensive campaign simulation that took place long into every night of the training. The training produced a class of talented and trained online organizers who understand politics and people, as well as the Internet and technology. A phenomenal success, the NOI’s first training was like no other. Learn more about the New Organizing Institute’s inaugural training: Trainees The Institute selected exceptionally talented trainees from a diverse range of backgrounds, actively recruiting outside of technologist stereotypes, and we were rewarded with a fantastic and diverse class of trainees. Among our trainees were experienced programmers, recent college graduates, computer science majors, community organizers, campaign professionals, individuals with little to no technology experience, web designers, and those looking to break into the emerging field of new organizing in politics.The diversity of backgrounds and experiences resulted in a far better learning experience, as trainees gained new ideas and insights not just from NOI trainers, but each other. Curriculum The curriculum incorporated basic campaign training as well as Internet and technology skills. NOI trainees do not just understand how to raise money online — they understand how their online efforts fit into an overall fundraising, communications, or field strategy. This first training was designed, not to produce IT staff for campaign, but to train campaign professionals extensive to make effective use of email, websites, voter files, and volunteer mobilization tools.during a campaign. Trainees learned the best practices of: Email list building Technology of mass emailing Writing effective emails Fundraising online Website development Mobilizing volunteers online Online “house party” tools Working with campaign staff Trainers The trainers at the New Organizing Institute training were almost as diverse in backgrounds and experiences as the trainees. Many of the trainers are experienced campaign professionals and experts in areas ranging from finance to field operations. Their presence ensured that NOI trainees have a solid grounding in campaign basics. The training also featured some of the biggest names in online organizing, including individuals from Moveon.org, the Kerry and Dean […]