What It Takes

The primary focus of a PICO organizer is the development of people's public leadership. While certain skills and techniques of organizing can be learned, a person must possess certain qualities in order to successfully develop people.


Organizing is about waking up every day with the internal drive to help people create change in their lives and in their communities. PICO organizers need a high level of self-motivation and initiative to make this happen.

Respect & Belief in People

PICO organizers spend the majority of their time interacting with people from various religious, socioeconomic, racial, and ethnic backgrounds. To build strong relationships that lead to action, organizers need to have a genuine love and respect for everyday people, and a belief in their power to create change.

Anger at Injustice

PICO organizers don’t just theorize about the impact of injustice – they feel it. Careful not to act solely out of anger, PICO organizers channel their feelings into positive, constructive action.

Understanding of Power

Positive and constructive action in the public arena requires the ability to critically analyze the policies and power structures that shape people's lives.  PICO organizers help people understand these power dynamics and how best to engage decision makers in their communities.

Comfort with Faith

A faith-based network, PICO works with individuals and communities from many different faith traditions and religious identities. PICO organizers should feel comfortable engaging clergy and lay people around their faith and how it influences their lives.


Helping other people move past barriers that have been holding them back requires that organizers examine similar barriers in their own lives. To effectively develop others, PICO organizers need to be invested in their own growth and development.