Gallagher’s head of campaign offers election advice

Sean Gallagher’s campaign manager is just one of the political experts who will be in Cork this weekend to provide advice to women on how to get elected on the local and national stage.

Any women who have ever thought about running for election are being encouraged to attend the day-long event which will examine the election process, candidate selection, and internal party politics.

Cathal Lee headed the presidential bid for the former Dragons’ Den star before Mr Gallagher’s bid was torpedoed on RTÉ’s Frontline.

Mr Lee, a communications expert, will offer advice at the “Women for Election” event on Saturday, which will be held at the Clarion Hotel, on how to run a campaign, as he says the whole process “can be very confusing for people on the outside”.

The programme is ideally suited to party and non-party members, community activists, NGO members, or any woman who feels she has what it takes. According to its organisers, it is seeking to “inspire” and not just inform.

Self-belief is often a barrier for women who do not feel sufficiently confident that they can compete in the political arena. This lack of confidence will be tackled at the event, as will the need for communications skills.

Mr Lee believes that research is the key to a good campaign. A good campaign team is also essential.

“A potential candidate needs to know who is running in their area, who ran, who is likely to run? They need to look at the demographics in the area, where they went to school, where they worked, and whether all of this and other community involvement can help them to build up a sufficient vote? People don’t seem to realise that you need less votes than you may expect,” said Mr Lee.

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