Rick Carter is my new hero. Thanks to Rick, I spent the whole weekend writing and finally finished the l-o-o-o-n-g chapter on Impact Planning! Yeay for finishing that chapter!
Rick is the ED of the Human Services Federation in Lincoln, Nebraska. (We fell completely in love with Lincoln when we were there last year, but that’s probably for another post. I’ll get the hang of this blogging thing eventually…)
Rick and I talked last week about an Impact Plan he facilitated for an advocacy group that was stuck in the classic advocacy rut: “If we just wait till the legislature changes…” The group had not had their issue debated on the floor of the legislature in over 20 years, never mind actually having it come up for a vote. So they were spending their time doing lots of background stuff, waiting until eventually, hopefully, the composition of the legislature would change and their issue could at least get a hearing, and etc.
So Rick helped facilitate an Impact Plan for them. They decided to radically change course, including the hiring of a new lobbyist. And literally within a few months, the group not only gets their first-ever floor vote, but they were defeated by only one vote – a 25 to 24 vote! I was blown away. First time at bat, and they not only got a hearing on the floor of the legislature, but they lost by only one vote!
After all these years of doing this work, how can it be that it still amazes me how fast this process works!? We were in Lincoln just a year ago. All we taught were some basic introductory workshops – just the shell, none of the specifics. Rick filled in the rest with his experience and his instincts, and look what happened in SUCH a short time!
I know that is what we developed this process to do. I know we have seen it work, over and over. One would think I would eventually stop thinking, every single time, “Oh this is SO cool!”
So I owe you a HUGE thank you, Rick. That one story had me writing all weekend, and got me to finish the chapter. You are absolutely my new hero!