CULTIVATE AN ENGAGEMENT ETHOSCommunity Engagement means: working collaboratively to discover, understand, and address community needs and aspirations. Deeply engaged organizations tend to act in certain ways. They have interactions that are authentic, meaningful and responsive to their community's needs.
Organizations that Shift Their Thinking:Turn outward and reorient themselves toward the community.Are open to change.Innovate and experiment with new ways of working internally and externally.Focus on community needs rather than the organization.
Organizations that Start Listening:Learn how to listen appreciatively without an agenda.Keep the focus on the community rather than the organization.Bring together leaders and diverse cross sections of the community for productive dialogue.Commit to continually discovering and understanding the community'sneeds and aspirations.
Organizations that Know Their Value:Review their mission and vision relative to the organization's strategic role in the community.Intentionally leverage their assets to best serve the community.Identify the unique value they offer as a partner, community stakeholder and media outlet.Define success for the organization in terms of shared benefit to the community that can be measured, demonstrated, improved and sustained.Constantly gather information and feedback about how they can make their workmore relevant and effective.
Organizations that Build Relationships:Understand that authentic relationships are rooted in trust and shared experiences that build social capital.Tap into community networks by attending community functions and creating a consistent, in-person presence beyond promoting the organization.Constantly engage other organizations and individuals in conversations.Stretch their comfort zone by pursuing opportunities to understand the community through the lens of diverse citizens and organizations.
Organizations that Collaborate:Seek partners whose strengths complement their own.Build collaborations through established relationships that have grown over time.Identify and respect mutual organizational needs, goals and aspirations.Integrate their work with others rather than working in parallel.Clearly articulate and safeguard their editorial integrity.Actively seek opportunities to sustain the work over time.
Community Radio to Community Media
Community Radio toCommunity Media: The Big Picture
Photo by Ian Britton, available under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License.If we do not change our direction,we’ll likely end up where we’re headed.
Photo by Wesley Fryer, available under a Creative Commons Attribution- ShareAlike License.Where is your station headed?
Setting the stage…1. Stuff you already know.2. Reagan (and a promise).3. An opportunity.
The World is Changing1. Demographics2. Collaboration3. Technology
Changing Demographics Pew: Blacks and Latinos are more likely to own a mobile phone than whites. Minority internet users more likely to use digital technologies to keep up with what’s happening in their neighborhoods. Twitter use on cell phone: • White (non-Hispanic): 7% • Black (non-Hispanic): 17% • Hispanic: 12%
Trend toward CollaborationPhoto by Andrea Wiggins, available under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License.
TechnologyPhoto by Tony Buser, available under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.
Promise: the future will not looklike the present or the past. Photo by crises_crs, available under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License.
Reagan Are you better off than you were four years ago?Photo by Edalisse Hirst, available under a Creative Commons Attribution License.
Setting the stage…1. Stuff you already know: The World is changing.2. Reagan: Are you better off than four years ago? Promise: The future will be different from the past and present.3. An opportunity: How will you respond?
OpportunityIncrease… your relevance and local value Engage your community.
Relationships MatterPhoto by Edalisse Hirst, available under a Creative Commons Attribution License.
Engagement= understanding community needs andaspirations.= cultivating authentic relationships withcitizens, civic leaders, potential donors.= authentic relationships built ontrust, shared experiences and mutualgoals.
Outreach Engagement• Extension of an • Integrated with an organization’s core organization’s culture, service (value-added) strategy and practices• One to many • Builds a pathway for dialogue• Talking to people • Listening to people• Approaches audience • Works with the with answers community to identify solutions.
If the focus is on you, your station or what youdo, it’s probably promotion.(and that’s important, too)
Engaging requires a completely differentorientation from broadcasting or outreach or promotion. AND Engaging informs all of those activities.
“If you’re truly listening to thecommunity, you’ll learnsomething you didn’t expect,and you’ll have to rethink yourposition or approach.” - Mikel Ellcessor, WDET, Detroit
To Do List:1. LISTEN to your community.2. Focus on community outcomes.3. Reflect on & answer three questions: 1. Role: What is our role in this community? 2. Relevance: How is our role relevant to this community today? In 3 years? 5? 3. Return: Will our role be relevant enough to generate a return that sustains it?
Photo by d.billy, available under a Creative Commons Attribution License. What made you successful in the past is not what will make you successful in the future.