Why should I hire a full-time campaign manager? by Margo Scott Dunn

By at August 6, 2013 | 11:01 am | Print

Why should I hire a full-time campaign manager? by Margo Scott Dunn

Margo Scott Dunn

The Importance of Hiring a Campaign manager

Running for office, particularly for the first time, is a daunting task. Raising money, especially if you’ve never done it before, can be overwhelming and uncomfortable.  Sometimes that leads to poor decision-making, like not hiring a full-time campaign manager because you don’t want to raise the money to pay for one.  But that is the worst idea.  Hiring a campaign manager is one of the most important moves you must make in order to win, and here’s why:

  • The candidate can’t do everything.  There aren’t enough hours in the day and while it may seem impossible, you have to delegate to stay on track and organized.

  • You need somebody to hold you accountable.  It’s easy to let yourself off the hook—we do it every day whether it’s the laundry or the gym, we let something slide.  A campaign manager’s job is to make sure you make all of your fundraising calls and knock on all your doors every day.  It will annoy you to have your feet held to the fire, but that is what it takes to win.

  • A campaign manager can be the “bad guy”.  If you don’t have a designated “bad guy” you will get stuck at endless bake sales and community meetings with people who will talk your ear off for 4 hours when you only scheduled 30 minutes per event.  You need someone who can butt in and be the “bad guy” to get you out of time-sucking situations.

  • You need someone with an objective view of the big picture.  Sometimes you’re so deep into the back and forth, the mudslinging, the petty offenses because this campaign is so personal to you that you can’t see the forest for the trees.  Someone has to be able to step back and be rational and objective – that someone is your campaign manager.

  • You need a professional with experience getting people elected.  Your manager shouldn’t be your spouse or a friend who’s part-time.  A professional knows what it takes to win and will keep you on track.

Hiring a campaign manager is an expense.  Most make between $2,000-$4,000 a month, but believe me, when you consider all the important things they do, they are worth every penny.

Margo Scott Dunn, Account Manager, The Campaign Workshop; a full-service political consulting firm that specializes in direct mail, print and online advertising for issue advocacy, candidate and ballot initiative campaigns. Margo worked for the Close Up Foundation in Government Relations. Over the 2008 election cycle, she worked at Compass Media Group.

The Campaign Workshop            1129 20th Street, NW Suite 200                 Washington, DC 20036




Management & Strategy

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