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Policy Influencer Playbook

Author: Cori Henderson

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Current strategies to successfully influence public policy and engage in advocacy, even in unpredictable times. Discover how to make real connections with elected officials and key decision influencers and how to effectively tell your story for maximum benefit. Join host Cori Henderson, MPA to learn the secrets used by public affairs professionals so you can raise your organization’s profile and have your voice heard by policymakers for the right reasons. Because 2020 made it clear that no one and no industry is exempt from government actions
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In this episode, I’m sharing some of my own experiences, thoughts and best practices on nurturing valuable relationships to advance your policy issue, cause and career.To be successful in advocacy and public policy, you must continually build and nurture valuable relationships.It’s easy to let developing new relationships and nurturing existing relationships get put on the back burner especially in today’s unpredictable world.How many times have you intended to reach out to someone or follow up with someone but haven't done it?I’m sharing my quick tips on how you can add structure and take some of the mental efforts out of growing and nurturing valuable relationships.Mentioned in Today’s Episode:Politico’s Off Message The Senators at the center of the 50-50 splitAbout the HostCori Henderson, host of the Policy Influencer Playbook podcast brings her Master’s Degree in Public Administration and 20+ years in Government Relations and Economic Development to help you and your organization engage at all levels of government to advance your agenda. From her unique perspective having sat at the legislative, regulatory, and stakeholder tables, Cori knows that passing (or killing) legislation, getting a regulatory project permitted quickly or a tax incentive package negotiated successfully all come down to the same thing: clearly communicating your message to the right person at the right time.
The power of your influence lies in your ability to impact decision making and raise awareness for your issue by persuasively communicating your right message to the right person at the right time.Podcasting is an incredible way to do that and I’m sharing how you can start a podcast in 5 easy steps.Whether you distribute your content widely on platforms like Spotify or Apple Podcast or send the episode link directly to your stakeholders or membership though newsletters and social media, podcasts provide an opportunity to communicate your message directly into the ear of your right audience. Mentioned in this episode:ATR 2100xSamson Q2UZoomStreamyardRiversideAudacityDescriptBuzzSprout (Clicking this let's Buzzsprout know I sent you and gets you a $20 Amazon gift card if you sign up for a paid plan - it also helps support this show at no additional cost to you.)cori@advocacysimplified.comAbout the HostCori Henderson, host of the Policy Influencer Playbook podcast brings her Master’s Degree in Public Administration and 20+ years in Government Relations and Economic Development to help you and your organization engage at all levels of government to advance your agenda. From her unique perspective having sat at the legislative, regulatory, and stakeholder tables, Cori knows that passing (or killing) legislation, getting a regulatory project permitted quickly or a tax incentive package negotiated successfully all come down to the same thing: clearly communicating your message to the right person at the right time.
Making an ask is easier and more effective if you’ve already developed a relationship with the decision-maker or key decision influencer. And it’s even better if they are already advocates of your project or issue.Today’s guest has a special talent for creating advocates and nurturing relationships.In this episode, she is sharing how to develop and nurture strategic partnerships and create meaningful relationships. The type of relationships that translate into momentum and support for projects as well as long-lasting, genuine friendships.Today’s takeaways include:How to bring a diverse group together for a common causeHow to create a virtual stakeholder groupAbout My GuestAllison Mcgrath is an AICP certified land use planner and an accredited member for The Congress for New Urbanism. She has almost 28 years of experience in land use planning and zoning entitlements, project management, industrial site certification, stakeholder engagement, regulatory compliance, grant writing and administration, and economic development.Allison has worked on the development of new towns and has managed consultant teams on 2,000+-acre projects in North Central Florida and Georgia to advance the sites for industrial development.About the HostCori Henderson, host of the Policy Influencer Playbook podcast brings her Master’s Degree in Public Administration and 20+ years in Government Relations and Economic Development to help you and your organization engage at all levels of government to advance your agenda. From her unique perspective having sat at the legislative, regulatory, and stakeholder tables, Cori knows that passing (or killing) legislation, getting a regulatory project permitted quickly or a tax incentive package negotiated successfully all come down to the same thing: clearly communicating your message to the right person at the right time.
Creating a genuine two-way relationship - before you need someone’s help - is a critical component of successfully influencing advocacy issues.Today’s guest has built her career by creating and nurturing authentic relationships. The kind of relationships that benefit the organization she works for and benefit the people in her network.And that’s the key takeaway of today’s episode, how to build and nurture mutually beneficial legitimate relationships including:Being authentically curiousFollowing up after you provide value or assistanceAnd the key indicators of your impactPlease note, we recorded this episode in the spring of 2021 as Covid-19 vaccines have become more readily available.  And we don’t shy away from what that means in relation to in person meetings and events and building real relationships.About My GuestJoanne Sullivan’s career in fundraising, development and community relations in Tampa spans thirty years and includes key leadership positions at the University of Tampa, Florida Hospital Tampa Foundation (now Advent Health), Academy at the Lakes, the Tampa Museum of Art and Berkeley Preparatory School. She currently serves the University of South Florida as USF Health Director of Community Engagement.Ms. Sullivan is a graduate of Florida State University and is on the Tampa Bay regional board of Easterseals Florida and also serves on the Easterseals National Board of Directors where she chairs the Marketing and Development Committee. She is a member of Leadership Tampa Bay’s Class of 2010 and Leadership Tampa’s Class of 1991 and is a current Leadership Tampa Bay Board member. She is a member of the Tampa Bay Chapter of the Association for Fundraising Professionals, where she is a past president and is a sustaining member of the Junior League of Tampa. She is a member of USF’s Women in Leadership & Philanthropy.About the HostCori Henderson, host of the Policy Influencer Playbook podcast brings her Master’s Degree in Public Administration and 20+ years in Government Relations and Economic Development to help you and your organization engage at all levels of government to advance your agenda. From her unique perspective having sat at the legislative, regulatory, and stakeholder tables, Cori knows that passing (or killing) legislation, getting a regulatory project permitted quickly or a tax incentive package negotiated successfully all come down to the same thing: clearly communicating your message to the right person at the right time.
In today’s episode we are diving deep into the secrets of writing a powerful press release so you can raise awareness and support for your issue and organization while cutting through all the online noise bombarding your intended audience.If you think Press Releases are old news think again. In this episode we cover:Writing headlines that get clickedHow to retain control of your messageRepurposing your press release for social mediaThe best way to use quotesAnd how you can discover what reporters are currently writing about so you can pitch your message to a news outlet that is already looking for the story you want to share.My Guest:Michelle Vroom is a Marketing Coach with more than 15 years of experience with nonprofits, agencies, and big corporations. Now she helps small business owners market themselves. She understands the challenges of limited resources and time, and shares her proven methods for visibility and relationship building.You can learn more about Michelle and her marketing services here http://michellevroom.com/  or at the Market Like a Boss Group on Facebook.  She can also be reached at michelle@vroomcommunications.com.About the Host:Cori Henderson, host of the Policy Influencer Playbook podcast brings her Master’s Degree in Public Administration and 20+ years in Government Relations and Economic Development to help you and your organization engage at all levels of government to advance your agenda. From her unique perspective having sat at the legislative, regulatory, and stakeholder tables, Cori knows that passing (or killing) legislation, getting a regulatory project permitted quickly or a tax incentive package negotiated successfully all come down to the same thing: clearly communicating your message to the right person at the right time.
Political campaign digital tactics become more advanced with each campaign season and result in new best practices that public policy advocates can also use to advance their cause. In this episode, we are talking with Michael D. Cohen, Ph.D about lessons learned during the 2020 elections as it relates to technology and digital ads. Communicating your message to the right person at the right time is critical in both political campaigns and policy issue campaigns. Mike is sharing a behind the scenes look of how that’s done in modern political campaigns.  Like most people Mike made predictions about the 2020 campaigns, listen now and find out if his predictions were right! We also cover the intersection of advocacy and political campaigns, Mike’s best advice for anyone who wants to get involved in public affairs and a preview of his new book.About Today’s Guest:Michael D. Cohen, Ph.D. is CEO of Cohen Research Group, a political, public affairs, and corporate research firm.  He publishes the award-winning Congress in Your Pocket suite of mobile apps and teaches college courses on political campaigns, digital strategy, and public policy in Washington, D.C.He is a three-time graduate of the University of Florida and he has been interviewed on campaigns, elections, and political research by the New York Times, Washington Post, CBS News, CNN, Forbes, Fox News, NPR, Newsy, VICE News, and  U.S. News & World Report. Learn more about Mike on his website.And order his new book Modern Political Campaigns here:AmazonBarnes & Noble About the Host:Cori Henderson, host of the Policy Influencer Playbook podcast brings her Master’s Degree in Public Administration and 20+ years in Government Relations and Economic Development to help you and your organization engage at all levels of government to advance your agenda. From her unique perspective having sat at the legislative, regulatory, and stakeholder tables, Cori knows that passing (or killing) legislation, getting a regulatory project permitted quickly or a tax incentive package negotiated successfully all come down to the same thing: communicating your message to the right person at the right time.
Context is significant in communications. In today’s episode with Andrea Hubbert of Hub + Company, Andrea reveals the secret of how to start difficult public policy conversations that allow for successful resolution. We also talk about what to do if your message isn't resonating and why your personality and values are important to include in your message. Stay tuned till the end to hear Andrea’s important advice!(Bear with us on the first part of this episode, but the audio will clear up after a few minutes. Stay till the end to listen to valuable tips and strategies from our guest and host!)More about Andrea:Andrea Hubbert is the founder of Hub + Company. She helps organizations and businesses amplify their message to build authentic relationships with their audiences that are grounded in principles packed with personality and styles. She serves in volunteer leadership roles helping to raise the profile and magnify the message of causes she’s passionate about. She also helps her clients start the right conversations with their perfect audience, get their ideal people excited to take action, and remove marketing technology barriers to drive growth for their organizations.Important Episode Quotes:The beliefs around the policy might not be the same but there is something both of you believe in that can be the common ground. - Andrea HubbertIt’s about the facts of the matter, and it’s not about the person.  - Andrea HubbertHow you present the issue is almost as important as the issue itself. - Cori HendersonIn advocacy and public policy, sometimes you have to reposition what people think about the issue. - Cori HendersonThere’s a lot of analysis in communication.  - Andrea HubbertIt’s not about the numbers, it’s the perception - Cori HendersonWhen you’re advocating for something your two biggest advantages are to build trust and to be credible.  - Andrea HubbertRemember who you are, stick to your principles, and think about how you and your principles fit in with whatever you’re advocating for. - Andrea HubbertAbout the Host:Cori Henderson, host of the Policy Influencer Playbook podcast brings her Master’s Degree in Public Administration and 20+ years in Government Relations and Economic Development to help you and your organization engage at all levels of government to advance your agenda. From her unique perspective having sat at the legislative, regulatory, and stakeholder tables, Cori knows that passing (or killing) legislation, getting a regulatory project permitted quickly or a tax incentive package negotiated successfully all come down to the same thing: clearly communicating your message to the right person at the right time.
When it comes to communicating your message avoid jargon, avoid acronyms, avoid language that elected officials or the general public would not be familiar with.  - Terri BehlingCommunicating the right message to the right person at the right time is the key to influencing the public policy that impacts you. And that starts with getting back the basics: great meetings advocating your position to elected officials. This week Terri Behling, former President of the Florida Public Relations Association, discusses not only how to have a great meeting but tips and tricks for preparing your advocacy strategy and doing your homework so you can achieve your goal.More about the Guest:Terri Behling is an accredited public relations professional with more than 21 years of experience in public relations, government affairs and community engagement. She has worked for non-profit and government agencies and as a certified public relations counselor, she served as the state president for the Florida Public Relations Association in 2017. She and her family live in San Antonio Texas.LinkedIn: terri-behlingInfluential Guest Quotes:Something you should always do before you meet with an elected official, watch them in action. Don’t discount legislative aids - they’re the most important staff members to build a relationship with.Visuals are important. If you have some sort of visual that tells your story, that is a critical way to communicate. Because if you leave that piece behind and a week later they look at it, they should be able to understand what they’re looking at without you in the room.Be prepared to answer questions but it’s also okay to say ‘" don’t have the answer to that right now but let me get back to you."Learn from others. Read a lot and it will help you grow in your profession.About the Host:Cori Henderson, host of the Policy Influencer Playbook podcast brings her Master’s Degree in Public Administration and 20+ years in Government Relations and Economic Development to help you and your organization engage at all levels of government to advance your agenda. From her unique perspective having sat at the legislative, regulatory, and stakeholder tables, Cori knows that passing (or killing) legislation, getting a regulatory project permitted quickly or a tax incentive package negotiated successfully all come down to the same thing: clearly communicating your message to the right person at the right time.
“Keep both your feet on the ground, keep your nose out of the air.  Just work hard, be a person of great integrity and character and treat others with respect.”  - Darrick McGheeWhen people hear the word lobbyist, their first thought isn’t always the best.  Maybe they envision backroom deals or the smoke filled rooms of long ago. But the reality is, lobbyists are advocates for their clients. And there is a lot to be learned from how a good lobbyist works the legislative processes to yield to the right outcome for their client.In this episode, we welcome Darrick McGhee, a well respected lobbyist and our very first guest. Darrick has worked in the legislative process for over 20 years and is sharing his personal experience working for three Governors and as a professional lobbyist.In this episode you'll not only be inspired by his journey and how he keeps the political and policy process in perspective, but you’ll learn Darrick’s top 3 tips on how you can effectively communicate your issues.Listen to this episode and learn how cultivating relationships, respecting the process and maintaining your own integrity are the real secrets to being part of the solution!More about the Guest:Darrick McGhee is the COO of the firm Johnson & Blanton with 2 decades of experience in state and local government. He’s a Florida lobbyist and former Director of Legislative Affairs for the Executive Office of Florida’s former Governor Rick Scott. Mr. McGhee also served in multiple senior leadership roles at Florida agencies including: interim Executive Director and Chief of Staff at Florida’s Department of Economic Opportunity and as Legislative Affairs Director for 3 additional state agencies.Personal websiteFirm websiteInfluential Guest Quotes:Treat everyone with the utmost respect. - Darrick McGheeStick to what is important to you and be part of the solution. - Darrick McGheeAlways respect the institution. - Darrick McGheeRelationships are everything. - Darrick McGheeYou have to be innovative in how you share your message. - Darrick McGheeMembers still want to be educated, you just need to adapt to the changes. - Darrick McGheeEvery mentor needs a mentor. - Darrick McGheeAbout the Host:Cori Henderson, host of the Policy Influencer Playbook podcast brings her Master’s Degree in Public Administration and 20+ years in Government Relations and Economic Development to help you and your organization engage at all levels of government to advance your agenda. From her unique perspective having sat at the legislative, regulatory, and stakeholder tables, Cori knows that passing (or killing) legislation, getting a regulatory project permitted quickly or a tax incentive package negotiated successfully all come down to the same thing: clearly communicating your message to the right person at the right time.
Influence can be a tricky word with all the positive and negative connotations that go with it. And it becomes even more complex when it comes to influencing government policies. How can you influence decision makers? In what ways can you inspire action?Is policymaking really about who you know? And how do you get to know them? How does being clear on your strategic agenda help you influence effectively? And what does a win really look like? If these are some of your questions, then this is the episode for you!Learn about Cori Henderson’s three-step strategy for agenda clarity, cultivating connections, and telling a compelling story, and discover why your leave behind leaves behind an impression. Let’s jump right in!More about the Show:The Policy Influencer Playbook podcast uncovers how business organizations and emerging leaders can successfully engage in policymaking and advocate for important issues, even in today’s unpredictable times. Weekly interviews and current strategies provide tools to engage in advocacy and successfully influence public policy, even in unpredictable times. Join host Cori Henderson, MPA, and learn the secrets used by public affairs professionals so you can raise your organization’s profile and have your voice heard by policymakers for the right reasons. Tune in and discover how to really connect with elected officials and key decision influencers and how to effectively tell your story for maximum benefit!Influential Quotes:Influence is about setting the stage in a way that creates opportunity for decision-makers to say yes and make the change you seek.The power of influence lies in your ability to be persuasive when you communicate your right message to the right person at the right time.You can advocate for causes, educate about policy positions and even influence government decisions without compromising your integrity.Leaders and other organizations and businesses who align with your issue can become great advocates.Successful policy advocates create an opportunity for key decision-makers to be supportive and to make the decision be advocated for.You don’t have to have all the answers, but having clarity on what you’re asking for allows you an opportunity to really and engage and influence those you meet with.About the Host:Cori Henderson, host of the Policy Influencer Playbook podcast brings her Master’s Degree in Public Administration and 20+ years in Government Relations and Economic Development to help you and your organization engage at all levels of government to advance your agenda. From her unique perspective having sat at the legislative, regulatory, and stakeholder tables, Cori knows that passing (or killing) legislation, getting a regulatory project permitted quickly or a tax incentive package negotiated successfully all come down to the same thing: clearly communicating your message to the right person at the right time.
The Policy Influencer Playbook podcast brings you weekly interviews and current strategies to engage in advocacy and successfully influence public policy, even in unpredictable times. Join host Cori Henderson, MPA and learn the secrets used by public affairs professionals so you can raise your organization’s profile and have your voice heard by policymakers for the right reasons. Tune in and discover how to really connect with elected officials and key decision influencers and how to effectively tell your story for maximum benefit.
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