Our system of government allows for almost anyone to run for government office. On the local level, usually being a resident of the city or district and a registered voter is all it takes. However, many people who are tired of the way our local governments are being run have convinced themselves that they cannot run for office for many reasons.
Maybe you think that you are not the right type of person, or maybe you have convinced yourself that there is some well-hidden secret to mounting a campaign. Many think that they do not have the money, the skills or the know how to do it. Others feel that for whatever reason, only an elite few can win.
The truth is, the only impediment to you running for office is the fact that you do not know how. However, just like driving a car or riding a bike, it is a skill that can be taught if you are willing to learn.
The first thing you need to do is lose that attitude that running for office is out of your reach. If you want to run and want to run for the right reasons, you can. Most of all, you can win. You just need to know the steps,
First off, make sure you are running for the right reasons. The public may look like it can be fooled, but believe me, they will see through an opportunist in a heartbeat.
Research the requirements of the office you are running for. Find out the filing deadlines, reporting requirements and any legal or financial documents that are needed in the course of running. Many candidates end their campaign before it begins by overlooking tiny details.
Make sure that you write an effective campaign plan that will act as the road map to your campaign. In it go over how much you think you will need to mount an effective campaign; how you will raise that money; and most importantly, what the steps you need to take in terms of social media and events in order to win.
Plan your social media strategy carefully. Be sure that your message is getting out there in the way that you want to and reaching enough people. The sure way to win is to have an effective strategy to reach your voters; the best way to lose is to not reach the voters.
Plan your events carefully. Many people are under the thought process that events are either something put together in a couple days or something that takes intensive planning and preparation. The truth is that it is somewhere in between. Depending on the event you want at least a 4-6 week planning window. The social media buzz alone will take that long.
The most important word of advice that I would give you is, be confident in yourself. You looked in the mirror and felt you had something positive to give to your community. You need to leave the house everyday believing in yourself. A confident person attracts followers, a timid man attracts flies.
You can win an elected office. There is not some secret plan or secret path to winning. Most of all it takes planning, and hard work. However, the chance to change this world for the better makes it all worth it.
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