It’s hard to win on your own – especially if you’re up against corporations with deep pockets, or politicians trying to balance dozens of political pressures.
Persuading other people to join you is key. There is power in numbers. Think of your issue as an oyster. You’re a grain of sand and you need to build circles outward ’til you have a pearl.
Here’s another way to look at it: if you can’t persuade those whose interests lie with you, why would you expect those who may have to sacrifice to do the right thing to pay attention?
Today, there are tons of tools at our fingertips for recruiting others to get involved.
- Post about your issue on Facebook or Twitter and invite other people to join the conversation.
- Make an evite for a town hall meeting or organize a meeting at your house.
- Write a blog post, ask friends for their input.
- Contact local community groups, advocates, see how you can work together.
And don’t forget the old-fashioned methods of networking. The more personal contact you have with someone, the more likely they are to show up.
- Call friends.
- Post flyers at your local coffee shop, movie theatres, or bookstore.
- Talk to people you run into on the street.
Take the Workers’ Defense Project’s tactics as inspiration. WDP had an uphill battle. Many of their members are immigrants who cannot vote or do not speak English fluently. So they enlisted the help of businesses who believe in treating workers right, labor unions, students, and faith groups. Students bring energy, time, and enthusiasm. Labor unions bring political clout. Business allies broaden the appeal. And faith groups help make the moral argument of respecting workers.
When all these groups and individuals come together to highlight problems and raise public consciousness, decision makers are forced to take note. “The power that corporations have with money and resources, we don’t have that,” Cristina Tzintzun, WDP’s Director, says. “But we have people power and we have voice.”