JVA Group educates newly elected officials in LA and DC

Ed Coghlan fields question from Tappan Town Councilmember Michael Maturo

Ed Coghlan fields question from Tappan Town Councilmember Michael Maturo

JVA Group was recently invited to give presentations to newly elected officials from two national organizations.

In Los Angeles the Young Elected Officials Network invited us to talk to their members at their Education Policy Academy. Fifty elected leaders from across the country came together to listen to experts in the field of education policy and hopefully leave with a clearer vision for education reform in their respective communities.

In Washington DC, we provided three presentations to newly elected Latino officials at NALEO’s National Institute for Newly Elected Officials. Those presentations included media training in English (which Ed did) and in Spanish (by Janeth Hernandez). We also did a presentation on the power of storytelling in policy development.

Our pitch to these and other groups always focuses on the importance of making storytelling a critical part of policymaker’s communications strategies. When used effectively, storytelling can be used to shape the narrative around any issue. When you control the narrative, you can ensure your story gets told first and best.

How important is shaping the narrative when it comes to policy development or any other campaign? Ask Gov. Romney who ended up controlling the narrative of his campaign after his “47% speech.” Watch Congress wrestle with the president on who controls the narrative behind the fiscal cliff negotiations. When you can control the narrative, you have the best chance of determining the outcome of any debate or discussion. That’s why we always ask potential clients — “who’s telling your story?”