I received an email from Beth Kanter about my decision to join her in championing the cause for the Sharing Foundation, which helps children in Cambodia receive the education and support they need. Beth asked:
What is the workflow for an effective cause ..? Suppose your
organization wanted to work with an intern to manage the cause with you. What’s on the to do list? How should the staff person manage the intern?
My initial response was two fold:
1. Build discussion
This is achieved by creating posts and questions on the Cause page so that when people click through from a blog or an invitation to join the cause, they are able to see people engaged and learn more immediately, without having to do the research themselves if they are unfamiliar with the organization. Identifying the most active participants in the cause and asking them to post a question, or better yet, asking them to respond to a question posted by the intern would be a good first step to getting conversations started on the Cause page.
2. Link to discussion
This is simply a matter of finding blogs and websites posting about and inviting others to the Cause, then putting links to them on the Cause page and thanking them for their shared support. This cross referencing will add to the information/education on the organization and therefore more people supporting it, while at the same time creating an opportunity for more participants in the conversation.
What do you think? Is conversation, the opportunity to ask or see other’s questions and answers about the work of an organization, something that positively influences your participation and support?