Ask Questions to Get Batter Social Change Results

Solving social problems or simply improving society in some way requires strategy. I guess everyone knows that already. Having a strategy, even a simple one you haven’t written down, is better than going on with no idea of what you want to accomplish or how. This post is about deciding how to best accomplish whatever it is you want to accomplish by way of social betterment (i.e., any effort designed to improve society in some way through alleviating a social problem or exploiting some opportunity for improvement).

Ask some questions about the issue:

What would success look like?
What resources do you have? What information, knowledge, money, or skill do you have now?
Where do you start – on what part of the problem or in what geographic location?
How do you choose a proper starting point?
Why do you want to tackle this issue?
When is the best time to act?
Where do you go for resources you need but don’t have?
How can you work around any resource shortage that can’t be corrected in a timely manner?
What factors contribute to the problem?
What factors could influence the amount of improvement you can expect?
Where are you likely to meet resistance to your plans?
What is your time frame and why?
Who are potential allies and how, specifcally, can you recruit them?
What factors in the community – cultural, ecological, economic, legal, political, technological – could help or hinder tyour efforts?

That list should suggest other questions that apply to your specific situation. Whether that’s true or not, you’ll want to record your answers somewhere. Your written answers are an important element of your plan to gain leverage in effecting the change you want to see.

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~ by chetdavis on October 22, 2007.

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