As we headed down to Washington D.C. last week, we had the opportunity to meet with journalists, a former lobbyist and staff from the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate.
We started our day at the National Press Club with discussions about communicating our message. The idea of trust came up. Reporting with integrity is an important part of building trust. Responsibility, Accuracy, and Fairness will guide you to communicating without compromise.
You also need to write well. This should be obvious but it’s something that I’m guilty of ignoring from time to time with last minute deadlines. The better you are at writing, the more people will read your material and follow you through your career. It will also put you ahead of your peers.
Think of that last article you had to read for the content but was so dry that you kept reading the same paragraph over and over without remembering a single word. Compare that with something that was written with the reader in mind: it makes a world of a difference.
Part of writing well is communicating clearly. Knowing your audience and catering to them will increase the likely hood that they actually read what you want to tell them and maybe even passing that piece of literature on to someone else.
The next morning, we got a lesson policy and how difficult it is to pass a bill. We were told it takes 6 years to write a good bill. Although the process is in place to give everyone a chance to review it, it makes it easy to squash a good idea. The main message I took away from this was that a lot of work goes into passing a bill and making it law.
As people, we need to communicate with our government very clearly about what we want and what we don’t want. Your representatives are there to serve you but if you don’t communicate with them they will assume you’re happy with what they’re doing. In North America we are extremely lucky to have the right to voice our opinions, let's speak up.
People in positons of knowledge should call for people in positions of power to make changes.
I challenge you to write to your representative to say what’s on your mind.
You don’t have to write the bill yourself but your idea can definitely make its way into law someday.