Identifying values

The first step in this approach is to investigate the values of your target group. This is qualitative research, as we have seen in the previous lesson.

The work of some sociologists is very useful to identify the values that people hold. The Theory of Basic Human Values, elaborated by sociologist Shalom Schwartz, tries to measure universal values that are recognised throughout all major cultures. His work led to the identification of a range of values that seem to be occurring in all settings. These values were then mapped out in a “landscape” of 10 emotional clusters as is featured in the graphic below.

Analysing values is not an easy task and should ideally be performed with the help of professionals, but when you don’t have this at your disposal it’s still better to do it with your own resources than not at all.

As we have seen in the video, the sweet spot or the “heart” of an influencing strategy is at the intersection between the values of your target group and your own. Let’s see if you can identify this “heart” in your own advocacy strategy.

Draw the heart

Where do you imagine is the overlap between your values and the values of your target group? In other words, what values do you think you might use in order to move your target group towards your cause?

This exercise is at the very heart, indeed, of your strategy. We strongly suggest you do this exercise in the real life setting of your program. It is important that there is a real broad ownership of this step, so we encourage you to bring together people from different departments  in your organisation and do this exercise jointly.