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Take time to Celebrate Legislative Successes

Posted By Owen Wirth, Government Relations Associate, Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Legislative advocacy is an important component of organizations and is one of the primary reasons members join associations. Once a legislative priority is achieved it is easy to think about what the next step will be, but it is also important to stop and recognize even a small accomplishment. Anything from a small funding increase to a major change in policy can often be considered a huge success which required hours of commitment, so it is important to take time to acknowledge each step forward. Legislative advocacy is hard work with long, demanding hours, so any success is something that should make your organization feel proud.

Spread the Good News

Effecting legislation in a positive way for organizations is tremendous news, and it is important to let members and supporters know what was accomplished. If your advocacy resulted in a funding boost, a major policy change or even fending off legislation that would have been harmful to your association, it is critical that you let people know about that good work. Be sure to acknowledge the work that legislators who championed the issue and volunteers who helped raise the awareness have done because this is their success too. Send out any information in your newsletters, e-mail blasts, and/or social media accounts so that the good news can be spread far and wide.

Celebrate!

Everyone likes to celebrate when a group experiences success, especially when they had a hand in the effort! Depending on how big the victory for your association was, you may consider having a social event to highlight the accomplishment and show appreciation to all those who worked on the issue (staff, volunteers, legislators, coalition partners, etc.). Celebrating can give everybody a chance to reflect on the work invested to achieve the goal and rally support moving forward.

Thank a Legislator

It is always important to reach out to your legislator to thank them for the work they did for you. A timely thank you note or e-mail after the legislative session is over will go a long way towards maintaining a beneficial relationship. If you met with them or exchanged correspondence, be sure to highlight that in your thank you letter. If a legislator championed an issue for your organization you should consider presenting them with a “Legislator of the Year” award, recognizing them at an event or in the association’s newsletter. If the legislator has a social media presence, post on their Facebook page or Twitter an acknowledgment of their work and thank them publicly for their support. Don’t forget that a great way to say “thank you” can be via political contributions or volunteering for their campaign. A legislator who is in your corner can continue to be an effective insider for your organization at the capitol.

Tags:  Government Relations 

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