The keys to a successful legislative effort are focused, strategic planning and consistent, effective implementation.
Planning consists primarily of determining what issues an organization is likely to face in the future as well as whether or not the necessary tools are in place to maximize the likelihood of success.
Issues spring first and foremost from an organization's legislative agenda which frequently requires considerable time and effort to determine. However, unanticipated issues often arise, frequently in the form of “crises.” Both types of issues require that areas of legislative concern and exposure are identified in advance. It is also critical to determine the desired legislative outcomes. In practical terms this planning process requires asking, in advance, “What are we going to be facing and what are
we going to try to achieve?” Too often legislative efforts fail either because issues have not been anticipated or clear cut goals have not been determined or both.
The most important tools an organization has in Washington are its relationships with those legislators who can affect the outcome on the issues of concern. Building relationships with these legislators and their staffs on substantive, political, and constituent bases long before the issue is ripe and action is necessary is absolutely essential. Going to the Hill for the first time the day before the markup is a recipe for disaster.
If an organization's legislative effort does not include a focus on consistent implementation of the plan, even efforts in which the strategy is well thought out and the necessary tools are in place can fail. All too often attention is diverted by the day-to-day routines of Washington. Downtown meetings, numerous fundraisers and discussing the latest political intrigue can fill a day in Washington. However, these activities may not provide answers to two critical questions: "Who are we going to turn to when we need something done on the Hill and have we done all we can to make sure their answer will be 'Yes'?"
A commitment to the importance of planning and implementation in the legislative process is at the core of Capitol Hill Strategies, LLC's philosophy of government relations.
Capitol Hill Strategies, LLC's philosophy requires a close working relationship with clients to determine legislative goals, priorities and vulnerabilities, as well as a consistent focus on long term implementation. In addition, it also requires face-to-face, everyday work on Capitol Hill to be able to provide clients the advice, counsel and Hill relationships that are necessary for success.
Capitol Hill Strategies, LLC is committed to working tirelessly and creatively with its clients to help them plan and implement their legislative strategies and maximize the chances of success.