Leading with the Five Stages of Engagement

Getting to the Moment of Oh! and ultimately Let’s Go!

Moment of Oh! Five Stages of Engagement

While it would be much easier if all community members reached the Moment of Oh! simultaneously, the reality is that each person travels through the five stages of engagement at his or her own pace. In addition the needs of individuals change as they move through the stages. Community leaders must allow  for these various needs. In this section we will describe how to recognize an individual’s stage of engagement, how the individual can impact other community members, and what can be done to satisfy the individual’s needs so he or she can move to the next stage of engagement.

We wrote this book especially for those high-voltage situations that require an extraordinary degree of community engagement, regardless of the ultimate authority for the final decision. When facing a tough issue, community leaders must clearly communicate how the decision will be made and who has the decision authority. Community leaders must garner community acceptance of the ultimate decision—regardless of the “official” process. We have seen too many decisions derail even when the decision process followed every rule and law. Paying attention to the stages of engagement helps ensure that quality decisions are ultimately implemented for the public good.

— Previous book post: The Five Stages of Engagement

— Next up:  Stage 1: What?

Greg Ranstrom and John Blakinger are authors of the new  book The Moment of Oh! a guide to help communities make tough decisions.