On those occasions where you wish to do your own lobbying, you can still benefit from consultation with Ray. The consulting arrangement offers you the benefit of Ray's experience and expertise as you plan and execute your strategic and tactical approach.
Ray LeBov's consulting services are available at each of the following stages of the lobbying process:
I - DIAGNOSIS
The first aspect of an effective lobbyist's approach to any effort is to diagnose all the factors and forces at play. You must ask these and other similar questions: who has a stake in the outcome? Why do they care about the issue? What can you present to them that they will respond to and why? How does the issue interplay with other issues?
II - ANALYSIS
Taking into account and building on the diagnosis, the next step is analysis. For example, if you are sponsoring a bill, you must find a legislator to be the author. To determine who you should ask to carry your bill, you will want to consider a wide range of factors, such as the potential author's subject matter expertise, their relationship with all four caucuses, their committee and/or leadership role. Other considerations include determining which legislative staff member is likely to be assigned responsibility for your bill and the potential the authorship might present for building a beneficial future relationship with the legislator.
III - STRATEGY
A keen knowledge of legislative processes, procedures and rules is necessary but not sufficient for success. Looking at the totality of forces potentially at play and how they all interrelate, you must create your "game plan." In the case of a sponsored bill, the game plan is essentially a road map that will guide you from introduction to gubernatorial signature. It includes such things as: strategies for dealing with allies and opponents; developing your best arguments in favor of, and rebuttals to arguments against, your bill; identifying your best witnesses for the various committee hearings; how and when to get positive media coverage.
Even with the best game plan (including planning for forseeable contingencies), you are still likely to encounter twists and turns in your path toward success, occasioned by unforseeable factors, forces and events not in your control. You must have the flexibility and nimbleness to re-assess and redraw your strategy as often as warranted.
IV - TACTICS
A strategist is someone who sees the whole picture, and can visualize the end-game. A tactician is the one who gets you there. Or, as Sun Tzu (Chinese General, 500 BC) said: Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.
The last part of being an effective legislative advocate is the ability to implement that wonderful game plan that you drew up in your role as strategist. This can involve a wide range of skills as you perform the day-to-day activities necessary and appropriate for attaining your goal.