How to Start a Political Career
Do you love politics? Have you been wondering how you can become a renowned politician in your society?
Do you want to gain mastery in the political sphere or see ways you could make an impact in your community? If you find yourself thinking and wondering what it takes to kick start a career in politics, below are a few things you need to have in mind.
There are various ways to get into politics, but it takes a lot of time and effort and can be really challenging.
This is mostly because it requires a lot of thinking and political strategy on how to get things to work the way you want them to and persuade people to buy into your vision.
When starting a career in politics, one key thing to understand is that your success is more often than not about who you know and not what you know.
This means that you have to develop a strong network and communication skills because political processes involve a lot of speaking and making your opinions heard by people and building strategic partnerships, and networking with many of the people who have influence in whatever society you belong to.
To start a career in politics, you also need to be well informed about the government’s policies both at the national and local levels.
In this article, we have listed some necessary and key steps you can take to achieve success in the journey of your political career. At a glance, they include;
- Join a political party
- Get a degree
- Be up to date on political events
- Be a volunteer
- Build skills and qualities of a political leader
- Start Campaigning
Join A Political Party
Becoming a politician is a gradual process, and it is advisable to affiliate yourself with people or parties that are well versed in it.
Not only will this give you the opportunity to be more visible, but it will also make you appear more authentic and credible in the eyes of the people.
Joining a political party also gives you the benefits of expanding your network with politically minded people who you can bank on for donations, recommendations or endorsement when the time comes for you to campaign for a position.
Get A Degree
The political space is really competitive, and you need to garner every qualification that gives you an edge over your competitors.
Although there is no particular academic pathway to take when you want to take up a career in politics, unlike medicine, engineering etc., it is still important to attain a reasonable level of formal education.
This will give the people the perception that you are well knowledgeable and eligible to take up responsibilities in society and more inclined to be voted for. It will also earn you respect and high regard in your party and locality.
Some degrees that may be helpful to your political career are history, philosophy, public administration, political science, international relations, economics and others.
Be Up To Date On Political Events
Before starting a career in politics, and even when you are on the journey already, you need to be aware of at least 80% of events happening both within your community and beyond.
You can achieve this by consuming lots of information from magazines, newspapers, blogs, and articles; whatsoever you can get your hands on.
This shows how determined you are to grow your career and how much you’re interested in the situations around you.
It will also help you in making decisions or creating solutions that are related to your career and be able to hold an intelligent and thoughtful conversation with other politicians.
Be A Volunteer
There are various ways that you can increase your qualification and gain more experience in your political career, and one easy way is to volunteer your time to political campaigns and functions.
Most times, when you avail yourself to be a volunteer, you might be given menial responsibilities like making phone calls, registering voters, taking minutes of meetings and so on.
Don’t let this discourage you; remember, you’re trying to build a career, so do whatever is handed to you diligently.
If you execute the job excellently, you have proven yourself capable of handling bigger responsibilities that will make you more visible and even get paid in the process.
Aside from getting visibility, you get the opportunity to understudy those above you and help you understand the process involved in a political career.
Build Skills And Qualities Of A Political Leader
It will interest you to know that people are secretly looking out for certain qualities in a person before selecting them as a leader in society.
This is why you need to take time to study those that you admire in the political space or research qualities that are expected of a political leader.
Some of the qualities and skills you need to develop include;
- Good communication skills
- Honesty and integrity
- The ability to make good decisions
- The ability to delegate responsibilities
- Strategic thinking
- Ability to motivate and inspire people
- Emotional intelligence
- And finally, good listening skills.
Politics may not be easy sometimes, but developing these skills can help you scale through challenging times and help you thrive and become successful in it.
There is a popular saying that practice makes perfect. This implies that the more you do a particular thing, the more you gain experience and become better at it.
You don’t have to wait until you reach the peak of your career before you start campaigning for any position. You can start small by contesting for positions in your school or local environment.
While doing this, make sure you focus on building a strong, reliable and trustworthy team because politics is a game of numbers and network.
It is also important to get involved in school or local community activities, focusing on making impacts rather than gaining visibility.
This will help you win the trust of the people while campaigning and make it easier for you to climb the ladder and campaign for higher positions.
A political career is not an easy profession to start, but it is not impossible to enter either, and the good thing is that you don’t have to be professional in politics before you can begin a career there.
With the few tips listed in this article, If well implemented with hard work, determination and focus, you can be sure of achieving your goals, becoming successful in your political career and making a positive impact in your society.
Before you just into a political career, you should find out what your career passion is.