Power 3 min read

Make A Difference By Getting To Know These 5 People In Your Community

Improve the quality of life in your neighborhood by following these tips.

You’re familiar with the adage, “It’s not what you know that counts, but who you know.” As it turns out, there’s a dynamic truth in the notion that by expanding your personal network, you broaden the scope of your influence. Nowhere is that more important than in your own backyard. In fact, you can immediately improve your quality of life by getting to know these five power brokers operating in your neighborhood.

1. School Superintendent

The chain of command in any public school district stops at the superintendent. If you have an issue with your student’s teachers, classmates, curriculum or the route they use to walk to school, pick up the phone and call the principal’s boss. They have the authority to make executive decisions and can access district resources more quickly.

2. Mail Courier

Mail couriers are often overlooked as the eyes and ears of a neighborhood. They walk the community during the day while most folks are at work. As a result, they’re often the first to report (and sometimes, prevent) crimes like burglary. Your mailman can be an ally in protecting your property and neighborhood, so introduce yourself by extending a warm welcome.

3. City Council Member

Make it a goal to know one of your city council members on a first name basis. City council members appoint city administrators, pass city ordinances and oversee million dollar budgets. Your city council member can give you an inside contact when trying to get improvements like speed bumps on your street or increased funding for local park maintenance. Your relationship will also benefit the council member, as they’ll be better able to connect with the constituency they serve. Attend a city council meeting, listen closely, ask good questions and become a power player in your neighborhood.

4. Director Of Parks And Recreation

Public spaces are provided and maintained by the city in the interest of community members like you. Take full advantage of the parks and recreational opportunities by being plugged into the source for fun and games in your city. Most Parks and Recreation Departments offer classes, operate sports leagues and coordinate activities for residents at every age level. The best opportunities fill up quickly, so stay connected so you get information as soon as it becomes available. And if you and your family have enjoyed services provided by your local Parks and Rec office, be sure to send the director and her staff a thank you note. They’ll remember you for it.

5. Chamber Of Commerce Member

Are you interested in the economic vitality of your neighborhood? You should be. It dramatically affects your quality of life. Local business owners join the chamber of commerce in order to network with other entrepreneurs as they navigate doing business in your city. If you have your own business, consider joining the chamber immediately. Who knows, you might become friends with owner of the local restaurant or president of the bank. By connecting to the center of economic activity in your city, you’re able to connect the dots between public and private spheres of influence and power. And by doing this, you empower yourself to improve the quality of life in your neighborhood.

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