training_christopher

Soapbox Training & Public Speaking

Soapbox Consulting is the innovative leader in interactive advocacy training seminars. Our trainers have a unique ability to make policy entertaining and important—and consequently, our trainees find themselves engaged and even excited about the material. From our signature "Hook, Line, and Sinker" preparation for Capitol Hill meetings, to our "Five Introductions" skills-building keynote, we offer unique training experiences that are ready to be put to practical use in the field.

Contact Angela Taylor to book your training. Click here to download a PDF of all Soapbox trainings.


train_advocacy_day_prep

Interactive Capitol Hill Prep 2014

60 minutes*
Trainer: Christopher Kush, MPP, CEO, Soapbox Consulting
Author, Grassroots Games & The One-Hour Activist

The One-Hour Activist Author, Christopher Kush, MPP, prepares Advocacy Day/Fly-in participants for maximum impact during congressional meetings. Participants learn the importance of a unified legislative request and how to incorporate localized and personalized details. "Capitol Hill Prep" is structured for small group participation-everyone in the room is provided an opportunity to articulate the legislative request and seasoned advocates are utilized as mentors.

Learning objectives:

  • The importance of staying "on message"
  • How to localize and personalize your meeting
  • Hook, line, and sinker: The parts of an effective legislative meeting
  • Common pitfalls and how to avoid them

train_preparing_opposition

Preparing for the Opposition

60 minutes*
Trainer: Christopher Kush, MPP, CEO, Soapbox Consulting
Author, Grassroots Games & The One-Hour Activist

Working directly with an organization's current legislative goals, small groups craft rebuttals to the actual push-back they are likely to hear in legislative meetings. They develop the confidence to answer a broad array of tough questions in their own words. This training can be used to engage seasoned advocates looking to take their skills to the next level.

Learning objectives:

  • Potential push-back arguments related to your organization's legislative requests
  • Strategic answers to each of these potential questions
  • Preparation of multiple valid responses to each argument
  • What to do if you get stuck or do not have a ready answer

train_5_intros

The 5 Introductions

60 minutes*
Trainer: Christopher Kush, MPP, CEO, Soapbox Consulting
Author, Grassroots Games & The One-Hour Activist

Although an organization's members were never officially appointed, they are regularly called upon to act as Ambassadors-whenever they interact with other professionals, community leaders, state regulators, elected officials, and the news media. This interesting and interactive session walks meeting participants through five introductions that will serve them well in a variety of situations. As a bonus, your participants meet five other participants as part of the exercise—making it a great ice breaker or keynote.

Learning objectives:

  • Simple conversations that can be used in a variety of situations, with a variety of different people, including community leaders, elected officials, news media, potential members, etc.
  • How to address misconceptions or untruths about your organization or legislative issues without cutting lines of communication
  • The power of carrying a personal story around in your pocket
  • How these conversations form the basis of almost any discussion related to proposed legislation.

train_interactive_media

Interactive News Media Training

60 minutes*
Trainer: Kevin Schultze, Vice President of Congressional Relations

Drawing on more than 15 years experience as a journalist in the Washington, DC, broadcast market, Dateline Award Recipient, Kevin Schultze, provides advocates with an interactive platform where they can practice pitching local news media stories to a former reporter. Using current issues as a launching point, Kevin Schultze helps tease out plans, details, and other important considerations by engaging in dialog with small teams. This training uniquely provides participants with the tools they need to build active relationships with their local news media.

Learning objectives:

  • Internal structure of local news organizations
  • Tips for helping "soft news" make the cut
  • Comparisons between the objectives of advocates and those of journalists
  • The sound bytes that make it on the news and what ends up on the cutting room floor

train_7rebuttals

7 Deadly Rebuttals

60 minutes*
Trainer: Christopher Kush, MPP, CEO, Soapbox Consulting
Author, Grassroots Games & The One-Hour Activist

This training is an effective way to prepare seasoned advocates or anxious novices who anticipate push-back related to your legislative issues. Advocates are prepared to remain poised and ready to engage with fair questions, even tough ones, without shutting down or ceding strategic ground. This training can be an important strategic component for organizations that find themselves championing controversial issues.

Learning objectives:

  • Push-back as an opportunity rather than an personal attack
  • Different strategies you can use to keep the conversation flowing without shaming or ridiculing your opponent
  • Ways to pleasantly detach when agreement is impossible
  • Changing minds: Realistic timelines

train_bootcamp

The One-Hour Activist Advocacy Boot Camp

Half-day*
Trainer: Christopher Kush, MPP, CEO, Soapbox Consulting
Author, Grassroots Games & The One-Hour Activist

Christopher Kush, MPP, author of The One-Hour Activist: the 15 Actions You Can Take To Fight for the Issues and Candidates You Care About, uses a variety of small group and interactive exercise to guide advocates through several skills they can immediately put into play in their home districts. This half-day training works best when Soapbox focuses on an organization's actual legislative goals and issues. Communication skills, face-to-face meetings, relationship-building, recruitment, and working with the local news media are all explored.

Learning objectives:

  • The difference between simply sending a message and building a relationship with elected officials
  • Quick and dirty bill analysis (4 things you need to know about any piece of legislation)
  • Effective Letters-to-the-Editor
  • Hook, Line, and Sinker, the parts of a legislative meeting
  • Preparing for the Opposition
  • Recruitment practice, including how to handle rejection without being depleted
  • Bringing it all together: Town hall meeting

* Special discounts are available to Soapbox clients with active contracts.