With political debates heating up the nation and presidential candidates rallying support all across the country for the 2016 election, it is an exciting time for starting a career in politics, particularly political campaigns. Any political candidate running for office, whether that be on the town, county, state or national level, requires support from many people. There are so many factors that make a political campaign successful; including finance, public relations, operations and research. Every person involved has an essential role in the political campaign, no matter how small it is. If you have a passion for politics, and the ability to work under pressure, there are a variety of jobs to choose from on the political campaign trail that may be worth pursuing:
1) Campaign Manager
This is an extremely important role, as the political campaign manager oversees all aspects of the campaign and its moving parts, from beginning to end. This team member takes responsibility of ensuring the campaign runs effectively, meanwhile freeing up the candidate to focus on gathering support on the political campaign trail. This means hiring staff, and making sure they are all performing their jobs effectively. This person should be organized, skilled at assigning responsibility, and very familiar with the election process and election laws.
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2) Press Secretary
The press secretary is a public relations professional that handles all the media and news aspects of the political campaign. This means arranging interviews and press conferences, building relationships with media outlets and writing press releases and other documentation surrounding the candidate’s campaign. In some campaigns, the press secretary also serves as the candidate’s speechwriter. The press secretary is the key player in establishing a positive presence for the candidate in the public eye.
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3) Fundraising Manager
Obviously no political campaign will do very well without financial contributions. The fundraising manager is responsible for coming up with ideas of how to gather contributions, organizing fundraising events, building relationships with financial contributors, and then keeping track of how much money comes in from different sources. In order to convince the public that this is a cause worth giving financial support to, the fundraising manager must be persuasive. To be an effective fundraising manager, you should be comfortable with people as well as finance.
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4) Campaign strategist
This job requires knowledge of public relations and methods for advocating a winning candidate. To be an effective campaign strategist requires extensive experience working on political campaigns so that you can be familiar with what is and isn’t effective. The person to fill this role must also have deep expertise of the political climate and public policy, so they can offer valuable advice to the candidate to influence their responses to big political issues.
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5) Campaign Researcher
This job requires gathering extensive information and data to support the political candidate’s opinions and statements. The political campaign researcher must keep up-to-date with any recent developments in not only politics, but economics, real estate, and many other areas. They should also stay abreast of what is going on in the political campaigns for opposing candidates.
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6) Political Campaign Intern
If you lack experience, this is an excellent first step to starting a career in politics. Your duties as intern may be heavily administrative in nature in the beginning, but you will also have the opportunity to attend meetings and events, and have a front row seat to the ins and outs of multiple aspects of the campaign.
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