How to Choose Your Issue


Pick an issue that is winnable. Your organization may dream of a free college education for every graduating senior, but this isn’t a winnable issue. A better choice would be increased funding for Federal Aide or a tax credit for parents of college students.


Make sure it is concrete and clear. Your issue needs to be defined well enough that your target audience understands exactly what you are working towards and you can measure whether or not you’ve been successful. “Helping the poor” is not a concrete and clear issue. Raising the minimum wage by $1.00 is.


Go for something important. Select an issue that the majority of your constituents care about. If not, it will be difficult to motivate participants.


Choose unity over division. Whenever possible, choose an issue that unites, rather than divides, your group. You want to focus their energy on the issue, not on fighting with each other.


Consider the time frame. You will need to maintain enthusiasm for this issue so choose something that can be achieved within a reasonable amount of time.



Voinovich School, Building 21, The Ridges, Ohio University, Athens, Ohio 45701 · 740–593–9381

Copyright © Ohio University