It’s Election Day in Massachusetts. Please remember to vote today–and to train your volunteers all the time!
My dear wife Rona Fischman is constantly shaking her head at what passes for communication.
Here’s the story of the campaign volunteer who nearly lost her vote–in one phone call.
On the Saturday before Election Day, Rona got a live call to her business phone from an Alderman at Large candidate’s organization. (An Alderman is like a city councilor.) The volunteer asked Rona if this candidate could count on her vote.
Rona said something like this, “I have four votes. Two are spoken for. The other two are up for grabs. Tell me why your candidate should get one of them.”
The guy on the phone was gobsmacked. He could not tell her why she should vote for his candidate. After a short silence, he said “____ will work tirelessly for the good of the people of Somerville,” and hung up.
Rona went on Facebook and asked all her friends, “Should this candidate lose my vote because his calling staff don’t have a clue why he’s right for the city?”
That’s not the kind of question a candidate wants voters to ask. It’s not the kind of question your nonprofit organization wants its donors to ask, either.
Please, please, please train your volunteers. At the moment they interact the public, they are your organization. What they do and say is what you stand for–at least to the person interacting with them. And when you ask for donations, you will need that person to vote yes.