Ops View: Labor Union Teletownhall Production Special Processes

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As a TTHM Operator, we listen to all kinds of different subject matter while screening questions and collecting participant data. Some of the most interesting teletownhalls that I have had the pleasure of working have been for union outreach. We’ve worked with labor unions like SEIU (Service Employees International Union – that includes health care workers, nurses, nursing home aides, and childcare providers), Allied Pilots (Transit workers from several large municipalities), and AFSCME – the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees. These unions do both big national teletownhalls and smaller forums with specific locals who need international support or who are engaged in negotiations, organized demonstrations or strike actions.

It’s empowering to have a forum where organized labor can speak on their concerns in the workplace during a call with leadership. When labor union leaders are negotiating a contract with an employer, members often have a myriad of questions including whether or not they need to prepare to go on strike. Oftentimes, pilots and transit workers have complicated and specific questions about their routes, their pay, and what to expect from the union in terms of support. Operators like me make sure we get the details correct and send the question up to receive a live response. With leadership in the union facilitating a live forum, critical messaging is amplified and questions from members are answered immediately and accurately.

Some of the special processes utilized by TTHM during these teletownhall forums include patchthroughs to legislators for advocacy or transfers to training opportunities. We also run live polls to get feedback from union members, or to take votes on motions where each vote is tracked to the individual participant. TTHM operators occasionally facilitate giveaways to participating members, and these giveaways keep the audience engaged and involved in the subject matter all the way through to the end when a prize is announced. Voicemails left during or after the teletownhall are another easy way to receive feedback from participants. We also send a recording of each teletownhall so that it can be shared with members who missed the live call, and some unions cut out critical segments to highlight on their website or social feeds.

A recent telephone town hall meeting I was involved in was geared toward helping home health aides stay up to date on the latest changes and requirements for their position. This labor union teletownhall focused on answering questions about required testing, discussing a new timeclock app for tracking hours, conducting polls for people who want to do additional training, and offered a patchthrough to go to a training immediately through a key press transfer. Find out more about the dynamic work we do with labor unions.

Labor unions know how important it is to communicate well with members, and a telephone town hall meeting is an engaging way to do it. These virtual forums also allow those with complex schedules and members dispersed across large geographic regions to join in a labor union town hall. Some international unions run teletownhalls by time zone or region, running multiple events over the course of an afternoon or evening. You can always Contact Us to see our production process and discuss how our team of moderators and operators can best serve your union members.

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About Becca:

As a TTHM Operator since 2020, Becca has collected thousands of e-newsletter opt-ins and processed even more live questions for a myriad of telephone town hall events. Producing forums for school districts, political campaigns, medical insurance providers, labor unions, sitting legislators and cities around the country has helped Becca to gain a wealth of knowledge from client speakers and event participants. Becca works from her home office on Florida’s Gulf Coast, but she has produced live forums while working remotely from Colorado, Montana, Iowa and lots of other places in between!