13 Oct Delivering Relevant Information to your Stakeholders
It’s Wednesday morning, the day after the election. Regardless of the winners, everyone is breathing a collective sigh of relief that another campaign season has come to an end. You’ve made it through countless TV ads, wild candidate debates and even wilder Saturday Night Live skits. Now it’s back to reality and time to report to your organization’s stakeholders … by close of business.
Whether you need to deliver an election outcome report to your boss, your board of directors or your membership, you can avoid the November 9th reporting scramble with a little planning. And by taking a few simple steps, you can deliver the best possible wrap-up to your stakeholders.
Determine reporting metrics before the election
In the weeks leading up to Election Day, identify key outcomes that are most relevant to your stakeholders. Is your membership interested in a basic overview, such as seats gained or lost in the House and Senate? Is your corporation laser-focused on how the results affect a particular committee or jurisdiction? Or is your organization more interested in gubernatorial races? Understanding your stakeholders’ appetite for information should drive your reporting.
If you’re still in a quandary about what to share, consider a tiered approach. Think about high-level deliverables like red or blue seats won or lost in the House and Senate. The next tier might include members on key committees. A lower one might be incumbents in areas of high employee or membership concentration or state-level challengers with experience in your industry.
An infographic on election outcomes is another method to consider. This may be as simple as a GOP/Dem array representing the new House and Senate makeups or a nationwide map that tracks gubernatorial outcomes. Complex information including statistics are best communicated with visual representations.
Put a new twist on election results by using alternative metrics
Is your department head or board of directors bored with your recycled campaign outcomes email? Then let’s skip over the usual stats and think outside the box. If you’re a health care company, consider reporting on any incumbent or newly elected official with a background in health care or who sat on a relevant committee in a state legislature. Don’t overlook spouses or family members of these elected officials in the same field, either. You should also never underestimate the impact of a caucus membership. Think through alternative vehicles to raise your core legislative and regulatory issues.
Maximize Synergies with Key Partners
Government Affairs organizations frequently partner with departments like Communications, Community Relations, Membership Services and Legal. Check in with your organization’s other influencers and stakeholders to evaluate their specific needs around elections, and think about pulling double-duty when it comes to developing election outcomes content. Take full advantage of other partners that may also be engaged with elected officials to tag-team and deliver on quick turn-around reporting. Even nominal coordination will help avoid duplicating efforts.
Tell your stakeholders how the election outcome impacts your organization
There are many metrics when it comes to predicting outcomes, ranging from numbers of seats lost or gained to updates in committee ratios. You’ve provided basic stats on the elections, now take the extra step to enhance your report to stakeholders. Tell them what to expect and your strategy for determining the impact on your organization.
An update might include some of these samples:
Democrats picked up 22 seats in the House of Representatives; this will alter committee ratios by two to three seats per committee. As an energy corporation, we anticipate the need to introduce ourselves to at least three new members of Congress and their staff. Several Representatives-elect have experience in our industry, and we are committed to making them champions of XYZ organization.
With the elections just a few short weeks away, simple steps like determining reporting metrics, partnering with others in your organization and communicating election impact will prepare you to distribute an election recap in record time.
Contact Heather Cutler at [email protected] or at 202-715-3907.