I recently had the pleasure of travelling throughout the Surat Basin in south west Queensland with a client of Articulous for a week, facilitating community information sessions. There were a few key lessons that I took away from that week that I thought were worth sharing, purely from a practical perspective.
Public meetings. Ugghhhh. We often try to avoid them, but to be perfectly honest, I’ve also seen them work really well.
Recently discussions have begun to explore the concept that we are the internet and the internet is a reflection of us. This has many ramifications for the way we approach online engagement, so let’s explore what this means.
It wasn’t just about engaging people, but about changing behaviour, so the games were designed to teach people positive actions and show them the gamified result with the aim of then replicating the real life behaviour
In an age where data is king, and every transaction and enquiry is trackable, some will ask “why engage?”. Why spend the time? Why take the added expense?
Presenting your hard work can be daunting, especially when it’s to senior management, but it’s also a great opportunity to demonstrate what you have achieved and the value of your findings.
Evaluation is a common word in communication and engagement circles, and yet it is often overlooked or hastily considered at the conclusion of a project.
“…This session is part of what will be ongoing engagement with industry and the community about the project. We want to involve the industry and community in the project. But this isn’t some all empowering engagement thing…”
While the word ‘disruption’ may insinuate a problem, what is really being described is a movement or permanent change to the way business operates that can lead to benefits for the business and its stakeholders.
However this one particular session did not exactly erupt with enthusiasm from the local community. So what does this mean? Did the engagement fail?
Knowledge of who your stakeholders are and how to contact them is imperative to any organisation, yet this is one area, in my experience, that organisations do poorly.
It seems to me that outrage, confected or otherwise is being seen as a completely legitimate tool in public discourse.
In IAP2 and community engagement land there is a great saying that goes along the lines of; if you’re not at the dinner table you might be on the menu.
Over the past few months of IAP2 training there have been some very interesting discussions about community versus stakeholder engagement.c