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  • Testimonials
  • "Coalitions 2020™ is an excellent leadership development simulation for non-profits to confront the difference between wanting to collaborate and really doing it."


    "Coalitions 2020™ demonstrates that leadership is not just about personality -- it is being proactive to attract followers to a common cause."


    "Coalitions 2020™ set our new leadership program off to a roaring start."

    Influence Skills : Coalitions 2020TM

    Building Influence and Alliance Skills Across Multiple Organizations in Public Policy Development


    It is the year 2020, and the continued population and economic growth of the region has outpaced the water supply capacities for several communities. Participants of this coalition building simulation are members of one of six groups who have five months to develop a regional long-term water supply strategy and get it on the ballot. To do this, all cross-functional teams must create and sustain coalitions through building alliances to generate the referenda. Unless clear and concrete actions in public policy development are taken now, the region’s water demands will exceed available supplies by approximately 20 percent by the Year 2035, and by nearly 30 percent for the Year 2070, threatening the safety, quality of life, and economic vitality of the region. Following long-standing practice, most of the local governments have historically pursued independent, locally-controlled public policy development solutions to their own water needs with varying levels of success. Something regional must be done, so having at least one referendum on the ballot is important.

    Who Should Participate:

    Coalitions 2020™ is an effective coalition-building and leadership development simulation for any business or technical professionals who work in a project-oriented environment that requires building alliances as well as information or product hand-offs across individuals or across cross-functional teams. Learning leadership development through building alliances is the crux of this simulation. It is ideal for:

    • Professional Association Conferences
    • Cross-functional Teams
    • Community Groups/Grass Roots Organizations
    • Public/Private Partnerships
    • City and County Government Training and Development
    • Leadership Development Programs

    What Participants Learn:

    • How to address issues inherent in cross-functional work
    • How to build relationships for ownership and commitment
    • Adversarial assumptions between groups
    • How to identify crucial decision points in building effective coalitions.
    • How stakeholder involvement affects policy development, communication, and long-term coalitions
    • How to distinguish various principles of influence
    • The role of the media in public policy decision-making

    How Participants Benefit:

    • Participants dive into Coalitions 2020™ within the first ten minutes -- because it is startlingly real in recreating the potential, frustration, ambiguity, and opportunity for alliances that exists in community and government arenas.
    • By recognizing the timing of addressing the particular interests of various stakeholder groups, participants can better plan strategies for establishing and nurturing political relationships.
    • The media's role in Coalitions 2020™ makes it unique. Participants watch "live" broadcasts and discuss the media's agenda in covering the emerging story.

    What Happens:

    Participants work to create suitable referendums, building relationships, coalitions, and alliances to get the needed approvals and signatures in time for the vote. To be implemented, a solution must be placed on the ballot in the form of a referendum and be passed by the voters. Anything short of this will not receive the necessary funding. The groups are:

    • Landowners: Property owners whose lands will be consumed or impacted by reservoir plans.
    • Developers: These homebuilders, economic development officials, and others want immediate action to assure an adequate supply of water for the long-term. However, they also fear that new reservoirs will bring new government restrictions on the type, location, and intensity of development in the watersheds above those new lakes.
    • Media: TV reporters who cover the political beat. They are here to report the water supply challenges facing the region and those working on solutions. They will give a live, two-minute report at the end of months 1, 3, and 5.
    • Elected Officials: Each city and county in the area has appointed one of their elected officials (Mayor, Commissioner, or City Council member) to this group charged with getting a workable solution to the water supply problem.
    • State Water Quality Commissioners. This commission gets funding from the Elected Officials, mostly from the larger cities. The charge of the commission is to assure an adequate supply of drinking water for the entire Region that meets or exceeds the water quality standards established by Federal and State standards.
    • WaterWatch. This environmental and conservation group wants to be sure the land and species in the watersheds are protected and remain healthy for our children’s children. They seek to assure that any referendum passed by the voting public is as environmentally friendly as possible.


    • Welcome and Overview
    • Briefing: The Regional Crisis
    • Planning Time
    • Month #1: Situation Assessment
    • Month #2: Position Development
    • Month #3: Coalition Testing
    • Month #4: Referendum Development and Submission
    • Month #5: Referendum Discussion and Vote
    • Large Group Debrief, followed by Small Group Debrief on Learning Applications
    • Summary and Evaluation

    Setup Requirements: Click here


    Research Triangle Park, North Carolina USA