As with their previous Organise! booklet, the Fabian Society’s new constituency campaigning guide, despite taking a very Presidential approach to the role of political candidates (“strategic decision maker, moral arbiter and political athlete”), contains much content that could be in a guide produced by any British political party.
Or rather, any very up-to-date guide produced by another party, because the pamphlet – as you would expect from something with Marcus Roberts‘s name on the cover – is up-to-date with its references to measuring, testing and using the internet.
Its talk of working out your ‘win number’ and then scaling your campaigning activity reminds me of the work I did in the Liberal Democrats quite a few years back coining the term ‘the pool’ based on similar logic. I fear in some parts of the party the Liberal Democrats have since slipped backwards, with a great emphasis on Connect’s 4S target groups without a safety check of whether they are actually big enough to be able to concentrate on and win (and hence not enough attention being given to how to increase the size of the 4S groups).
One statistic, in particular, caught my eye: Labour’s rule of thumb is that one volunteer can talk to 6 voters per hour when out canvassing. But don’t take away from the pamphlet just that number; it’s all well worth a read.Labours-Next-Majority-A-Constituency-Guide
UPDATE: Given the result of the 2015 general election, you might reasonably be wondering how well, or not, this guide has aged. I still think it’s well worth a read as there is lots to learn from it. Though of course there’s also a book I’d recommend…