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During the visit

  • ​ ​Arrive early. Get there 5-10 minutes prior to the meeting. Plan on the meeting lasting between 15-30 minutes, but be prepared for your important points in 5 minutes if that is all the time the official has available.
  • Briefly introduce yourself and other attendees. Let the official know you are a constituent that lives in or works with community associations. Tell him or her how many individuals reside in the association. Mention that you are a member of CAI, and CAI is international organization dedicated to building better communities through education and advocacy. CAI’s mission is to inspire professionalism, effective leadership and responsible citizenship—ideals reflected in communities that are preferred places to call home.
  • Identify the issues you will be discussing. Clearly explain the issue and use layperson’s terms. Have a conversation with the official and do not read from the paper.
  • Be clear on what you want the official to do. Ask directly for his or her support or opposition.
  • Ask if the official has any questions. If you do not know the answer, get back to the official in writing as soon as possible.
  • Ask the officials position on the issue and try and gain a commitment. Pay attention to the response. If he or she is talking with several groups about the issue to determine the position, simply restate that your position.
  • Never argue or act combative.
  • If any commitments are made, sum them up at the end of the meeting to make certain that everyone understands what has been decided.
  • Leave your written position paper. Offer to provide further information it on the issue to the appropriate staff person.
  • Offer to provide or arrange a community association tour for the official and staff or a meeting with other residents. This is an excellent opportunity to convey your appreciation and to help educate them on community association living.
  • Be the first to conclude the meeting. Be gracious and the official or staff member for his or her time.​

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