NR 506 Challenges in Lobbying Strategies
NR 506 Challenges in Lobbying Strategies
As far as meeting with local legislators or policymakers, I am sure that the best approach would be trying to find a time to meet face to face with them. However, due to the current circumstances, I think a telephone call or e-mail may work best. Illinois State Representative, Norine Hammond, is running for re-election this year and the Primary election starts on Tuesday. I feel that she has much more important things to do for her own success than to take time to meet with me. Of course, I have never met her, so she could be willing to take the time to sit down and talk, but I will understand if she would rather not due to the timing. Timing could also be a factor as I am due to have another baby at any time in the next 2 ½ weeks. I would hate to schedule a time to meet with her and then have to back out due to being in the hospital or trying to recover at home. As I mentioned, if she would meet with me, I would make sure she was aware of my circumstances in case I had to cancel at the last minute.
I think e-mail is less personal of course, but I also think it is much easier for people who have a busy schedule, because it then allows them to respond at their convenience. With the Primary election beginning this week, Ms. Hammond will definitely be busy. However, it is said that someone would need to ask six people in person to have the same power of an email with 200 recipients (Bohns, 2017). For that reason, I would prefer a phone call conversation over an email conversation. I also think that conversations over email or text can easily be misinterpreted and I think there is great significance in immediate responses as well as changes in voice. I know for me personally, it is much easier to say “no” in an email than it is on the phone or in person. It is also easier for me to argue my case in person rather than in text form.
Because Ms. Hammond will be helping me out with my class, I will be appreciative of whatever she has to offer.
Bohns, V. (2017). A face-to-face request is 34 times more successful than an email. Harvard Business Review. Retrieved from: https://hbr.org/2017/04/a-face-to-face-request-is-34-times-more-successful-than-an-email
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I liked your post. I think meeting with a state representative that is currently going through a re-election year is interesting. If you could possibly meet with this person face-to-face that would mean so much more than just discussing healthcare policy issues. You could speak about her future election and the implications that may have on her career. The side that she takes on your healthcare policy issue could even play a role into how may vote in the coming election (barring that you are in her district to vote). However, like you stated, having an e-mail conversation can essentially provide you with the proper means of attaining all the information you will need for this class and your healthcare policy issue. Here’s what I found during my research related to e-mail communication with legislators, Results indicate that e-mail is much more useful to communicate with some audiences than others. In particular, legislators in our sample are very likely to see e-mail as a positive development for communicating with constituents and policy insiders with somewhat less positive views on e-mail with intermediary groups” Richardson (2006).
Richardson, J. E., & Cooper, C. A. (2006). E-mail Communication and the Policy Process in the State Legislature. Policy Studies Journal, 34(1), 113-129. doi:10.1111/j.1541-0072.2006.00148.x
Communicating with Legislators
Before approaching a policymaker, it is wise to know the background of the person you will be interviewing
(Kachel, 2014). You should know what their stance is on the issues you will be discussing (Kachel, 2014). Since my husband works in the Jacksonville North Pulaski School District, I have been able to ask both him and his coworkers about Daniel Gray, the President of the Jacksonville North Pulaski School Board. Mr. Gray is involved in the district’s athletic department, so I feel children and physical activity are important to him. I surmised he would be a good person to speak with since he shares a similar interest in children’s health. By knowing your subject’s background, you will know the best way to explain your policy that will peak interest in your audience (Kachel, 2014). It is important when speaking about your policy that you can show some personal connection to the issue (Kachel, 2014). By showing how this issue affects you, the policymaker will be able to understand your passion and realize the importance of the issue (Kachel, 2014). On the other hand, if someone is presenting a policy and acts as if they have no investment in the issue or could basically care less, why would the policy maker care? Working in an orthopedic unit has allowed me to see what long-term effects childhood obesity can have on adults. Eating habits and physical activity are created as children. If schools implement avenues to address the obesity issue, they can prevent many people from developing medical conditions and even an early death. I feel my current jobsite then provides me with topics I can personally discuss with Mr. Gray. Like any conversation, presenting a policy is going to come across best if it can be done in person (Kachel, 2014); this approach adds a face to the issue. Discussions done by electronic communication can sometimes cause information to get lost in translation or come across differently than the presenter is intending. I plan to contact Mr. Gray via email to set up a meeting time that is convenient for him. Ideally, I would like to be able to speak with him in person, but a phone call might be the only option. Before the initial meeting, it is helpful to send information on the topic you will be presenting (Kachel, 2014). This step will enable your policy maker to list questions and concerns for the discussion. Sending information before the meeting provides time for the other person to perform his own research on the issue. Likewise, being prepared for the presentation hopefully demonstrates the importance of your issue to your policy maker; it emphasizes the need for supporting your viewpoint. Researching the background on the issue is the first step. To hit a homerun, you must convey the importance of the problem by being well prepared for your presentation.
KACHEL, D. E. (2014). Communicating with Legislators. School Library Monthly, 30(5), 8-10.
I would agree with you that it is the best to speak with a policy maker that has a vested interest in your policy topic. I also like the fact that you have a smart approach to understanding the policy maker, being able to have a personal connection with them as well. Not only do you have the advantage of a more personal connection, but a way of speaking to the policy maker face to face. I think that being able to speak face to fact is very important and makes a greater impression than any other way when it comes to presenting your policy priority and hopefully making a change for the better. It is hard to express your enthusiasm or passion for your policy priority with the other forms of communication. But in any form of communication you must be well prepared to present your policy and have the information to back up your plan. We all have things we would like to change, especially in healthcare, but to make those changes we have to put the work and time in to make those changes and show those in charge that we did devote the time so they understand the importance of the issue.