Public and community engagement, involvement and participation is what we are doing as consultants. It is also what we help others do most effectively. We work with teams, companies and agencies on reaching consensus through public participation and collaboration. We usually find ourselves bridging divides by creating spaces where people are willing to participate to build solutions. Community engagement builds consensus. And below you have some of the best of the news and tips that we have found about how to engage communities. Or what happens when you do not. The latest news handpicked by our public sector consultants, all wrapped up with a sometimes snarky – yet always informed – perspective. Enjoy!

Social community cooperation concept and group crowdfunding investment symbol as a team of diverse hands nurturing a sapling tree with roots wrapped and connecting the people together i a 3D illustration style.

Community Engagement

The Worm is Turning – in Some Places

For a long time the common understanding of the purpose of corporations has been to make money for its shareholders – or its sole owners if it’s privately held. I suppose you could also argue that government’s only real purpose had been to do the bidding of the elected officials ...
read more →

The Cost of Zoom

“You’re on mute” may be the most used phrase of the times. We’ve spent nearly two years working with each other by way of Teams, Zoom, GoToMeeting, WebEx, Google Meet, Skype, or some other video conferencing/meeting platform. And it turns out a lot of people have learned to like it ...
read more →

Community Input Is Bad?

“The community-input system is unfixable and, more important, undesirable,” so says the accompanying article from The Atlantic. I say bull-cookies. With all due respect to the article’s author, they clearly don’t know what you and I know. Public engagement, done with authenticity, skill and creativity, is most desirable. The ...
read more →

Engaging the Privileged

I recently started working with a municipality confronting the growing homeowner opposition to multifamily housing adjacent to or within established neighborhoods. I’m sure you know that home prices and rents are going through the roof (pun intended) – as is demand, especially for multifamily and more affordable housing. Cities, builders, ...
read more →

The Simple Truths about Change

Change is the key. You can make a reasonable argument that the angry public, fractured state of our union, broken politics, and the present culture war being waged in the U.S. are all simply the result of changes that people were/are unwilling to accept. We need to understand change – ...
read more →

Brewing A Better Meeting

I have to admit I’m getting just a little emotional writing this because finally … after all these years … I get to marry two of the more important and instrumental things from my professional and personal lives. Better meetings, meet better beer. Beer, I’d like you to meet meetings. ...
read more →

Resisting Change

The truth is that life constantly changes. Almost all public participation issues and conflict are the result of change; mostly about the changes that you need to initiate and people supposedly need to accept. It’s equally true that we all tend to hate change, especially when someone else or some ...
read more →

The Run DMC Model of Public Meetings

Public meetings are now mostly hybrid combinations of hosting in-person people and hosting those participating by Zoom. Managing these gatherings efficiently isn’t the same or as easy as managing meetings were back in “the before times.” Most of us are pretty sure these hybrid gatherings are here to stay so ...
read more →

Virtually Helpful

The pandemic has changed all of our lives personally and professionally. The way that we now have to do our jobs with people has been the most obvious change. This profession, which has always been a generally high personal touch business, has transformed into a mostly no touch approach. And ...
read more →