Building Trust & Effectiveness in Congress
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Everything You Need to Know About Social Media You Learned in Kindergarten

James Vaughn, Special Consultant to CMF, recently attended the Public Affairs Council Grassroots Conference where he had the pleasure of hearing Nick Schaper of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce talk about social media. Schaper's list of "Do's" when it comes to communicating with Congress were very similar to the basics we all learned- or should have learned - in kindergarten.

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Media Advisory: Behind-the-Scenes Look at the Work Life of Members of Congress

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and the Congressional Management Foundation (CMF) will release the findings of the first research to examine what members of Congress think about their jobs.

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Undergrads Shed Light on How Best to Communicate with Members of Congress [VIDEO]

CMF would like to congratulate Earlham College juniors David Schutt and Clara Stuligross for taking first prize at the Project Pericles 2012 Debating for Democracy™ (D4D) National Conference! To advance their issue, team members Schutt and Stuligross used a portion of their prize to produce “Effective Communication with Elected Officials – Tips and Tricks from Those on the Inside,” a video featuring Rep. Paul D. Tonko (D-NY) and congressional staffers. The series of one-on-one interviews reveals much of the same insight that CMF has gained through our research.

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Constituent Services: 8 Resources for Grantseekers

Congressional offices field calls from constituents seeking grants and support all of the time. When your office is on the receiving end of such requests, you might want to point them to these eight resources on the legislative support pages of the Foundation Center's website.

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Senate Budget Committee Listening to the Public

New Senate Budget Committee Chair Patty Murray recently announced the launch of “MyBudget,” the committee’s new online effort to encourage members of the public to participate in the federal budget process. This new online tool allows the public to share their stories, budget priorities, and ideas with the committee as it writes a budget.

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Key Budgeting Questions for Freshman Members

Opening a new congressional office is a difficult task for freshman legislators. You will be forced to develop a budget with little staff support, relevant information, or time. New Members and their limited staff must consider the most effective ways to allocate their money while considering the possibility of future budget cuts. CMF has compiled six key questions for New Members to consider when developing a mission and identifying the resources that will support that mission.

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#SocialMedia Cheat Sheet: Great Tips to Apply to Constituent Outreach

The 113th Congress looks as if it is quickly adapting to the changing world of social media. In fact, the vast majority of the newly elected Congress members (all but three, to be precise) have Twitter accounts. Read on to learn some useful tips on optimizing your communication through twitter.

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Five Ways to Engage Freshmen Legislators

The election is long over. By now the advocacy community is settling into 2013 legislative strategies and identifying key figures to champion their agenda. With one of the largest freshmen classes this century, which new Members will join your cause? Which Members may have a connection to your issue or your supporters?

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Challenges in Congress: CMF's Brad Fitch on C-SPAN [VIDEO]

Last month, Brad Fitch, President and CEO of the Congressional Management Foundation (CMF), was interviewed on C-SPAN's Washington Journal. Based on research done by CMF and 13 years of personal experience working on the Hill, Brad discussed a wide range of topics on the show, painting a more accurate picture of the life and work of Members of Congress. Topics ranged from the initial challenges with setting up a congressional office, hiring staff, and learning new issues, to debunking some common myths about Congress such as congressional pay and office budgets. 

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Five Ways to Manage and Capitalize on Redistricting

Ah, it’s that time of the decade again! As you know, every ten years states undergo a redrawing of districts that affects the make-up and boundaries of each district – and will impact your boss’ constituency in the coming Congress. In some districts the population might not be altered very much, but in others the Member’s constituency could be completely different.  You may end up representing a new ethnic population or add a military post. Whatever the results may be, it is important for you and your new constituents to get to know one another so that your office can provide the best possible service. CMF has outlined five areas you should keep in mind while learning about and supporting your boss’ new constituency.

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Inside of Capitol Dome

CMF is a 501(c)(3) nonpartisan nonprofit dedicated to helping Congress and its Members meet the evolving needs and expectations of an engaged and informed 21st century citizenry.

Our work focuses on improving congressional operations and enhancing citizen engagement through research, publications, training, and management services.

Read more about CMF


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Communicating with Congress The Internet forever changed how citizens and Congress interacts. The goal of this project is to facilitate a more meaningful democratic dialogue.


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Gold Mouse Project
Congress should effectively communicate with and serve citizens online. CMF assesses congressional websites to identify best and innovative practices that can be more widely adopted by the House and Senate.


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Inside the Hill
Produced by Founding Partner Fleishman-Hillard, this video series allows you to hear directly from Members and staff on how technology is changing the way Congress works.


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Life in Congress
This novel research project by CMF and the Society for Human Resource Management has two goals: identify the factors that motivate congressional staff and shed some light on Congress as a workplace.


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21st Century Town Hall Meetings CMF seeks to continue our innovative work in this area by conducting comparative research on in-person town halls, online town halls, and telephone town halls.