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RUN WITH US WORKSHOPS: Five Things to Avoid
Running in the Students’ Union General Election is an incredibly rewarding experience and gives you the opportunity to represent the students’ interests and make meaningful changes around the university. For individuals who have never participated in an election before it can be a stressful and chaotic time laced with rules which you need to pay careful attention to. All of these rules will be illustrated within your Nominations Package, but to help you out we compiled a list of the top five things to avoid while running:
- Making promises you can’t keep
Don’t promise something that you know you can’t keep. Not only does it set unrealistic expectations for yourself during your term, it also is misleading to your constituents. To learn more about what is realistic take the time to drop by the Students’ Union to talk to the staff or the Executive before you start writing your platform.
Pre-campaigning is definitely something you want to avoid. While you are still allowed to tell your friends about your intent to run you should avoid posting any campaign materials, asking for votes, or disclosing your campaign platform. This involves both physical and online campaigning so be sure not to fall into this trap.
- Not understanding the rules/deliberately breaking them
As a candidate it is your responsibility to read the Nominations Package and understand the rules and guidelines before running. These rules are put in place to ensure a supportive and fair environment for all candidates running in the election. Individuals who break these rules can face a temporary ban from campaigning, fines, or even disqualification depending on the severity of the infraction.
- Being distracted from your own campaign
The campaign period is a relatively short amount of time and can be very chaotic for many candidates. In order to have a successful campaign it is important to stay on track. This means more time focusing on your own campaign and less time chasing around your competition.
- Burning Out
While we encourage all candidates to be committed to their campaign we want everyone to take care of themselves. It looks better to your voters if you are able to manage your personal life and the campaign together. This ranges from making sure you take a shower to preparing and appearing well-composed during the forums and campaign period. There you have it! While there are other things to avoid these are the major not-to-dos of campaigning. If you ever have any questions don’t hesitate to ask the incredibly knowledgeable staff at the Students’ Union or executives.