Campaign Tip: Don’t run for a job you can’t excel at.

Here’s today’s tip: Don’t run for a job you can’t excel at.

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This one seems so simple that some of you are probably saying, “How stupid do you think we are, Raz?!”

The simple fact is that far too often, fitness for the actual job of being an elected official is near the bottom of the list of reasons that motivate a candidate to run.

Everything from simply thinking that it’s an easy race to win, or that it’d have really cool job perks to general love of service are all reasons I’ve seen motivate a candidate to run much more powerfully than that they truly believe they’d be the best person to execute the job they seek.

There are lots of starting points in politics. Some folks’ first campaign is for high office while others climb the ladder. Both approaches have unique pros and cons. But in neither case should you seek a job that you can’t be a rockstar at.

If you’re considering a run for public office, don’t let the cart get ahead of the horse. Start your deliberations with that questions: Can I crush it at this job? Am I the best person available? If so, THEN start designing your strategy for winning the campaign.

If you run for an office that you’re not qualified for or can’t excel at, one of two things will happen: You’ll lose because it becomes clear you’re running primarily to benefit yourself, OR, you’ll win and quickly find yourself trapped in a job you’re not equipped for.

Neither case provides an opportunity for effective public service or a long-term chance to grow your political impact.



Raz Shafer