Federation of Ontario Public Libraries

Some great advice here for anyone making town council presentations.

Municipal World: New Councillors: “Keep your stick on the ice!” by W.D. (Rusty) Russell

New councillors: “keep your stick on the ice!”

10 Rules for Surviving Political Body Checks

Summary:

Let’s take stock of some of your initial experiences.

“First, you are finding that the municipality has a ton of complex issues. …  There are no simple answers!”

“Secondly, since you are custodians of “public money,” you are constantly reminded that you must take decisions within the confines of numerous provincial statutes and regulations.”

Operating in the Fishbowl
Don’t Re-invent the Wheel

10 time-tested rules for surviving “Political Body Checks.”

1. Learn to listen with interest. Summary – Discipline yourself to listen with interest.

2. Learn the skill of asking questions. Summary – Avoid direct confrontation. Reply with a question.

3. How to get someone to stop talking. Summary – You can often end a conversation by asking the speaker to summarize his or her points.

4. When addressing council, get your facts right. Summary – When addressing council, make sure your facts are correct.

5. Do not waste your gun powder. Summary – Keep your cool. Keep your stick on the ice!

6. There are times you should apologize. Summary – There are times you should bite the bullet and apologize.

7. Be prepared to compromise. Summary – Be prepared to make compromises and trade-offs.

8. Do not use profanity. Summary – Avoid profanity like the plague!

9. Remember, you will be in the media spotlight. Summary – To a councillor, a newspaper can be a double-edged sword.

10. Respect your municipal staff. Summary – Your municipal staff can help you get the facts straight.

Information unlimited: You will be flooded with information – more facts and statistical data than you would ever believe possible.
Democracy at work