How A Group of 6th Graders Inspired Me to Launch A Political Consulting Firm

I went to bed early on Election night. It was part fatigue and part defense mechanism.

I woke up the next morning, checked my phone, and my heart was heavy. For the first time in my adult life I was anxious about the future.

I went full Eat, Pray, Love to center myself. I didn’t watch the news; I ate healthy food, traveled, and racked my brain over ways to “do good” in highly hostile social and political climate.

As part of that, I volunteered for career day at a local middle school and asked a group of 6th graders what words came to mind when they thought of politics.  They were quick to shout jail, fake news, fighting, Republicans, Democrats and Donald Trump. One student even made a sour face! At that moment, I thought to myself, “Really? Are we that bad?” As a follow up, I asked the students what things they’d like to change at school or in their communities; one child shouted out, “I want healthier food in the lunchroom, another said “we need a playground without trash everywhere”, and from the back of the room, one said timidly, “new rules for shoes at school so my family can afford it.”  I was blown away by how substantive their answers were, addressing health, environment, and even education policy in a matter of seconds. I surely wasn’t that conscious in the 6th grade.  I went on to speak with three classes that day and the trend was the same.

That’s when it hit me; the reputation of the political industry is horrendous. There are real problems that need solutions; good people doing great work with passion but their efforts are largely unnoticed.

That’s why I created Politics with Purpose, a digital media and consulting firm for candidates, causes, companies and citizens who are committed to social change. We partner with leaders, and organizations who are moving the needle forward and leading the conversation in a tangible way. We also champion responsible citizenship and community engagement.

The political landscape is constantly evolving. If you want to affect change, your messaging must be effective-especially online.  But, between impressions, cookies, exchanges, SMS, bots, clicks, snaps, apps, and dozens of other metrics that exist, it’s hard to know what matters or even where to start. At Politics with Purpose, we work to simplify that process for you, so that you can focus on your purpose.

Advocacy and digital organizing are more than sending a tweet or a text.  You can do the right things for the right reasons but if you don’t know how to communicate with the right people people your mission will fall on closed ears. Digital organizing is about engaging with your desired audience on the platforms that they use most and in words that they can understand.

Here’s another truth, we are not all Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, or Donald Trump for that matter but we can make our mark and a difference! Politics with Purpose will show you how.

A mentor of mine always says that, “you cannot become what you cannot see.” It’s important for a class of 6th graders to see that politics is not about scandals and fighting but rather about making an impact in their communities. It is also important for society to see the diversity of leadership and work experience in the industry. A colleague of mine wrote a brilliant article about the need for more women in consulting. It’s 100% true. As someone who sits at the crux of technology, media, and politics, I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve been the only woman or person of color in a decision room. I am proud to stand in the industry as a black woman owned firm media and consulting firm.

Leadership is needed now more than ever.

So, are you ready to fulfill your purpose?

Join our mailing list. We’ll be releasing a number of digital tools and resources to help you effectively navigate this wacky world of politics.

Still searching for inspiration to impact the world?

My first piece of free advice? Try talking to some 6th graders. Then give me a call.