Organizing Statements

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  • #30091
    • British Columbia
      • Moderator
      • ★★★
      • Posts: 46

    As part of the annual conference Anna Keenan of FVC put on a slideshow about how to plan what you are working on and why and how you do that. The idea is that you do this before strategy and tactics. She asked us to try and create our own organizing statement.

    Here is the Presentation. A summary of the presentation is copied out below. and Book: Organizing People Power and Change are good resources for further learning.

    You can reach Anna Keenan on Facebook and twitter at and


    Your “organizing statement”:

    1. We (organizers)
    2. are organizing our constituency
    3. to achieve their shared, motivating goal
    4. by our target date
    5. by following a primary, believable strategy (do this last!)

    1. Organizers
    Who are the people you are organizing with? Who is your team? You should be able to name these people individually. 3-15 people Ideally 3-7 at the core.

    2. Constituency
    who do you serve
    what makes this group unique? what do they have in common (2-5 points of commonality, shared identity/activities/places/interests/practice. How is this group diverse? (points of difference, inclusion, diversity)

    3. their shared motivating goals and 4. target date
    What motivates you constituency to want to work together, put time and effort in? What do they want to change? What problem do they want to solve and by when? How will the constituency know when they have won? How will their lives be improved? Does “Have you achieved your goal” have a Yes/No answer? If not, make your goal more specific. Deeper dive: is it a SMART goat (specific, measurable, ambitious, realistic, time-bound, inclusive, equitable)

    Anna K election campaign.
    We: a core of 9 volunteers
    Are organizing: people who support Anna K
    to achieve: triple the green vote, maybe win, in her riding
    by target: by October 21, 2019.

    Facebook Unfriend Coal Campaign.
    We: core team of 7
    are organizing: Greenpeace supporters worldwide who have facebook accounts
    to achieve: the fb corporation having 100% renewable energy as a criteria in its siting policy for data-centers
    by target: By end of 2011.

    Awareness raising is:
    – not campaigning
    – not a valid organizing pool

    Awareness raising is a tempting tactic!

    Engagement Layers
    Grow all the layers!

    1. Observing
    2. Following
    3. Endorsing
    4. Contributing
    5. Owning
    6. Leading

    The Four Questions of Strategy

    1. What is the goal?
    2. Who has the decision-making power to make this happen? (target)
    3. Why haven’t they done this yet? (2-5 main barriers)
    4. What resources/power do we have, to overcome those barriers?

    Question 1 and 2 are easy but 3 and 4 will take time and brainstorming with your team. You will need to decide on your area of focus.

    • British Columbia
      • Moderator
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      • Posts: 46

    Here was the example I submitted while participating in the discussion. It was just an idea and not something I am actually doing, but would be interested in:
    We: a team of 7 FVC North Vancouverites
    are organizing: voters in the district of North Vancouver
    to achieve: support from municipal councilors for municipal PR
    by target: the next municipal election

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