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How do we create strong EMS leadership at the national level? 

By  Robbie MacCue

Join national advocacy groups, participate and contribute.

What are you and your organization doing to educate the public (that includes elected officials.) The phrase: “All politics is local” since most of EMS’s funding stream comes from local municipalities.

Lobby Days at the State & National level - help educate politicians and share emotionally connecting stories. Find a balance of facts & figures and compelling stories.

Also, consider running a multi-day Appreciative Inquiry summit, which brings stakeholders from all fascents that your organization touches.

Video Transcript

Welcome to today's EMS Q&A. And we really have a great question here about, do we need strong leadership at the national level or more of a statement, right? We need strong leadership at the national level. And how do we create that? So I think there's some very interesting resources that are already out there. Number one, get joined the national advocacy group and participate,

contribute to that group. There is, there are several ones out there we're going to link below the video and in this article and put links to those national advocacy groups. And most of them have state divisions so that you can join your States, maybe chapter. And I think they usually have some type of lobby day at the Nash at the state level where you can help educate the politicians and really share not only the facts and figures,

but I think what really connects with, with people are the stories, the stories that you have and the perspective that you bring is so valuable and that you can really help influence their perspective on what EMS is. How is it different from the fire department, right? Where does your funding actually come from? How many calls you actually do? Because if you're like most organizations,

it's multiple times more than, than what people think. I think what you and your organization can do is really educate the public as well. That includes the elected officials, right? You may have heard the phrase, all politics is local. Since most of EMS funding comes from th those funding streams come from your local municipalities. So I think those are some great,

actionable steps that you can take. And really, if you're not seeing the advocacy you want at the state or national level, get passionate about it, get a group of people together and start advocating on your own. Sometimes there's nothing better than the grassroots advocacy efforts and reach out to some advocacy specialists and they may be able to help direct you and maybe advise you a little bit.

There is, there are different restrictions involving lobbying, but really there's nothing that restricts most nonprofits from lobbying as long as most of it's disclosed from paid lobbying, if it's disclosed, but it can definitely be done on a volunteer basis and advocate for, for your profession, for your industry. But Lisa, if you could just mention and talk about one really useful concept that can help change on a,

on a massive scale, whether it's local or national or global level, the concept of an appreciative inquiry summit. Yeah. I'd be happy to. And I just want to say before I jump into that quickly, you know, the question was, how do we create that? And I think we have to be it right. And, you know, attributed to Gandhi who said,

you know, be the change you want to see in the world. And often we're looking to others, do what we think should be done rather than saying, well, why not me? Why not? Why not create that by being a leader and, and being at a national level and working my way towards that. But I do think the appreciative inquiry summit or the concept of appreciative inquiry is an excellent mindset or an excellent method for engaging stakeholders at all levels.

And essentially that's what a summit is an appreciative inquiry summit, or the, the appreciative inquiry is about wondering what works and getting perspectives from all different levels. So whether it's the, the paramedics and EMT and the drivers and, and the volunteers within your organization and the paid staff, getting all their input, getting input from leaders, but also from, from elected officials,

from constituents, from folks you've, you've helped from your donors, like getting their perspective. And there's a particular way to do that when you're not just asking, you know, what w what's wrong here, but you're looking from what's worked w you know, what attracted you to our organization? What was a high point story that you had about your involvement with our organization or with our staff or with our,

our, our members it's really questioning and curiosity from a whole nother perspective. You're not out to solve a problem. You're out to discover what works and look for the root causes of that success. There's a phrase, success leaves clues. And if we're willing to have eyes for those clues, have eyes for what works and what's, what are, is that the source of what works,

then you can do more of it. And people love stories, as you said, and they love success stories. So it's a way to, even if you're not able to bring everybody together for a summit, which is a, you know, two or three day event, even if you are able to dispatch people from your organization to go do interviews,

too, to get curious about what's working w in, in one organization, you and I worked with, we actually looked interviewed long-term members and law people who have used the service and gathered stories about what worked and what were the high points. And then, you know, disseminating those stories and especially disseminating them at town meetings. And, and with public officials was just invaluable.

So I do think, you know, people should check out the links that we're posting and at the risk of self-promoting, I highly recommend our book because there's all kinds of appreciative questions in there originally designed for use at a meeting, but honestly, they can be used for any, any kind of interview. So it's a great place to find appreciative questions,

or just Google appreciative inquiry, and you'll find out more information. All right. Well, thanks everyone for watching.


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Robbie MacCue


Robbie is the cofounder of the EMS Leadership Academy, host of the EMS Leadership Summit, and paramedic captain in Albany, NY where he serves in the Special Operations Division for ground rescue, flight, & tactical medicine. He performs international medical flights with North America's largest fixed wing Air Ambulance service. For more than 14 years, Robbie served as President of a non-profit EMS organization advocating for increased funding and raising the bar of excellence. In addition, Robbie is an American Heart Association advocate who is passionate about empowering others to save more lives. He has taught physicians, nurses, and other medical providers Advanced Cardiac Life Support at medical schools and hospitals throughout Manhattan. Robbie has undergraduate degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and a MBA from Case Western Reserve University and provides business consulting that combines his love of technology with healthcare.

Robbie MacCue

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