Now you're a councillor

Now you're a councillor

A site for women councillors in Victorian local government

Being an elected councillor is about communicating.  Get ready to polish your communication skills through meetings, the media – traditional and online, presentations, speeches – and by talking to your constituents.

Meetings and virtual meetings…

Becoming a councillor means going to meetings.  Always be clear about your role and what is expected of you.  As a councillor, you need to know how to create and participate in different kinds of meetings from full on council meetings to informal community meetings.  You can think of  social and traditional media as meetings of a sort, because they are tools for communicating with the community.

For many new councillors, formal meeting procedures present an immediate challenge.  To be effective in council meetings, you will need to know these requirements inside out.  No matter what “hat” you are wearing at a meeting, the bottom line is be prepared.

Learn the ropes

You are one of a team … Marg Attley was first elected to Mansfield Shire Council in 2005. Her advice on learning the ropes is

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The scoop – working with the media

Tips to remember… Councillors have many duties and perform many roles.  When talking to the media make sure you know your council’s media policy. Then

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A journalist’s view

My own lessons in local government took years to learn, but chief among them was that the relationship between the media and local government is not as adversaries, but partners. The keys to productive relationships between local government and the media today are still – education, communication and understanding.....

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Alana Schetzer

Get to know your local journalists

Journalists aren’t always chasing negative stories , they’ll also promote community events and achievements as part of a balanced newspaper. Ultimately, what we both share is our desire to serve our communities; they who hold the power as readers and voters.....

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Using social media

Social media connects councillors and constituents on a personal and interactive level. It allows you to drive the conversation, without the say-so of traditional media. You can bypass the local newspaper and connect directly with those you’re elected to serve.....

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Stay safe online

A great way to engage… Ruth McGowan OAM, a consultant in local government and former Councillor and Mayor at Baw Baw Shire 2007 – 2011

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