How To Win An Election: Strategies and Tactics

The Political Climate in Kenya is becoming hotter and with less than 100 days to elections, it can only be worse. Leaders are doing all they can to demarket those that are competing against them or their preferred candidates.

The formula for winning elections is simple, you get more votes than your opponents. Your strategies and tactics must be geared towards realizing this objective. Use Mathematics, Creativity, and an understanding of your local area to craft your winning strategy.

Winning an election requires you to use the right strategy and tactics. You must have a watertight plan of action and at the same time employ tactics to emerge the winner.  A strategy is a set of a series of unique decisions that you must make to meet your objective which is to win. A tactic on the other hand is a plan of how you will implement your strategy.

In the book The Winning Strategy, it is noted that Strategy without Tactics is the slowest route to Victory, and Tactics without Strategy is definitely the noise before death. You must therefore combine strategy and tactics to win.  Some tactics may leave some candidates feeling bad but you must remember the objective is to win not to make your opponent look or feel good.

Your campaign team is critical in winning an election. Remember as they say too many cooks in the kitchen spoil the broth. There must be clear unity of command in your camp. Your plans can easily go up in smoke with a simple comment by your campaign team to another candidate or supporter. You must ensure your team knows what is public and what must remain secret.

Understand your competitor first, if incumbents, capitalize on their weaknesses without mercy. Tell the electorate where they failed and why they don’t deserve a second term.  Your campaign team must position you and allocate any resources to the benefit of your strengths and minimize your weaknesses. They must magnify your strengths at all times.

Direct your strength at your opponent’s weaknesses all the time. Give the voters the reason to vote for you and not any other candidate. The simplicity of your message is key to winning an election. Turn your campaign into small goals, where if you need let us say you need  100,000 votes to win the governor seat, you break it into the village, ward, and constituency goals.

To win ensure you persuade those that have not decided whom to vote for and make sure your supporters get out to vote.

Let us know your thoughts in the comment section.

Dr. Mary Mugo
Strategy, Governance, and Management Consultant.


3 thoughts on “How To Win An Election: Strategies and Tactics”

  1. Patrick Murerwa

    Dr. MM, this is indeed a masterpiece. Valuable insights therein. Will immediately share with a brother vying in the forthcoming August elections.

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