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Campaign Training Is Key for Volunteers

Rephrase my Campaign Training Is Key for VolunteersEveryAction Admin
Mon, 01/08/2024 – 08:00

Alice McLoughlin

Campaign Training for Volunteers Matters for Good Campaign Management
Campaign training can make the difference between a winning and losing campaign—especially training for volunteers. Although it’s important that you have a good candidate, campaign manager, or volunteer coordinator who can gather the volunteers, if those volunteers are not provided with training, they might not be of any help. When volunteers can provide much of your people power on a campaign, it’s important to make sure they know what they’re doing. A simple and effective way to get your volunteers up to speed is to send them to campaign training!
Although we recommend campaign training for both staff and candidates as well, that will be covered in a separate blog post in the future. In this blog, I’d like to discuss how we approach volunteer training.
Your team is only as good as the information provided to them and the training they receive. Information and training can help get the whole team on the same page before the election starts to get busy. It can provide them with knowledge they may not have, such as how to knock on doors, how to speak about certain issues, and how to diffuse a situation with an angry potential constituent. It also gives them foundational knowledge about what their role is and what the role is of everyone else involved in the campaign. Their duties will be clear, and they will be able to effectively carry them out.
When we say you should provide campaign training for volunteers, we don’t mean that you need to spend a fortune sending them to an intense, multi-day program. Although that may be helpful, it’s also not always feasible, and it can be asking a lot of your volunteers to make that kind of commitment. Instead, we recommend that the first time your volunteer does some work for your campaign, you schedule them to come in 30 minutes to an hour before you need them. This time can be dedicated to giving them an overview of your campaign, a description of where you need help in said campaign, and a quick practice session with some tips for their duties, such as running through a phone banking or canvassing script. While giving an overview of your campaign and your needs depends on you, here are a few things you can do to help prepare your volunteers to stay on message when talking to voters:

Have all of your volunteers read through the script multiple times. When having volunteers help with either canvassing or phone banking, it’s important to create a script for them to use to help them answer the questions of voters or stay on message. When they first join your team, have them read this script both out loud and in pairs. This helps to familiarize them with it and can bring up any pronunciation issues they may have with names or words in the script. Knowing how to respond when questioned may for better SEO. 

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