Involvement

CAMPAIGN CODE OF CONDUCT

  1. Be serious but have fun. Energy and excitement are infectious. Politics is serious business, but if you are not having any fun or getting something out of the campaign, get out, because chances are that the folks you are trying to get on-board will also "get it" and get out. 
  2. Take care of yourself -- physically and emotionally. Working on a campaign means too little sleep and too much stress. Take care of yourself. Yes, this is your mother: eat vegetables, drink in moderation, stay focused, get regular amounts of sleep, exercise and make the time to stay healthy emotionally and physically. 
  3. You are part of a team, and the team is why you are here. You win campaigns by working as a team, not by trying to be the superstar. If you badmouth a co-worker, you hurt the team. If you badmouth the candidate, you hurt the team. If you badmouth the campaign, you hurt the team. 
  4. If you have a problem, address it with the appropriate person in an appropriate way. Frustration and aggravation are normal. Being pissed off is normal. Wanting to scream is normal. But yelling and swearing in front of the office (or in front of volunteers) is unprofessional, demoralizing, and annoying. Problems with supervisors, co-workers, the campaign, or a volunteer should be dealt with privately with the appropriate person or people. 
  5. Find one close friend as a "vent partner." In WW2 it was "Loose lips sink ships." In politics, loose lips -- indiscriminate complaining and venting -- sink campaigns. Gossip is fun … about the other person's campaign. But since everyone also needs to vent, find that one confidant to "tell all" to and who you can trust will not "tell all" to anyone else – sometimes this person is NOT a fellow campaign worker – all the better to trust someone outside of your world. 
  6. Do not leave campaign papers/plans lying around. Not to be too paranoid, but you need to assume that other campaigns and the media are paying attention to your desk, your trash, and your regular campaign "haunts." Too many campaigns have been undermined by carelessness with confidential inside information. 
  7. If you think you are being paid too little, ask for more, but don't complain about it. If you went into politics primarily to make money, get out. You won't be happy, you won't be any good, and you won't make any money. It's okay to be interested in what everyone else makes, but if knowing this makes you crazy, don't ask. There are plenty of other things to focus on. 
  8. Sexual harassment is a crime. No means no. Don't pressure co-workers or volunteers into romantic encounters or sexual relationships. If what you do makes the other person uncomfortable, stop what you are doing. The campaign's purpose is to elect someone, not pick someone up. 
  9. Remember you are always an ambassador for the candidate. For most voters, you will be as close as they get to the candidate. How you act, what you say, what you do, what you wear reflects back on the campaign and candidate. 
  10. Clean up. Moldy rotten food, old pizza boxes, half-filled cups of coffee, and crushed beer cans may make for an interesting "campaign atmosphere" (or frat house) but most people and volunteers just find such things disgusting and it sends a bad message about the campaign. Energy and excitement are infectious. Politics is serious business, but if you are not having any fun or getting something out of the campaign, get out, because chances are that the folks you are trying to get on-board will also "get it" and get out.