What can we learn from the Absolute Boy?
Whatever your politics, it’s hard to deny that the rise of Jeremy Corbyn has been an unexpected phenomenon that has transformed our political landscape in the last few months.
With trust in politics, the media, business and charity at an all-time low, it’s time to take stock and look at what we can all learn from these turbulent times.
That was the premise of our latest GOOD Bites, held here at GOOD on Thursday.
We were joined by a dream team of speakers, including Nikki Peters from MQ, a charity that’s building a base of support and advocacy from scratch; and Sam Tarry, a campaign manager and organiser from Momentum (and someone who’s witnessed the Corbyn phenomenon first hand).
What was abundantly clear was that the worlds of politics and charities felt surprisingly familiar. A moribund landscape, hampered by slow processes, baggage and falling trust – one that’s ripe for new methods, movements and energy.
Our own Pete Grant outlined how Jeremy Corbyn’s election success was driven by organic reach on social rather than paid advertising, with an emphasis on amazing cultural moments (like hanging out with grime star JME) rather than slick, targeted attack ads. Sam Tarry shared how this was driven by an agile, effective and informal network of communicators, film-makers and coders rather than a slow, controlled top-down management structure. And Nikki Peters talked about how MQ is building such a network, aiming for genuine advocacy, engagement and participation rather than just acquisition, retention and data capture.
This year Edelman’s trust barometer showed the largest ever fall in trust across all sectors, with over half the population believing that the system has failed and that life can only get worse. Whether you work for a charity or are trying to win an election, it’s clearly time to take note and stop acting like nothing has changed.
How could thinking differently help to turn your fortunes around? Let’s chat.