Attorney Samuel Dewey Explains How to Thrive as a Congressional Staffer


Life as a Congressional Staffer can be exciting and challenging at the same time.

New Congressional Staffers are thrown to the fire from the get-go. There are immediately confronted with huge responsibility and intense pressure. This can be extraordinarily stressful, but it can also be deeply rewarding. 

Like any job, there are rules to follow and advice you should take to make your experience a more successful and enjoyable one.

Attorney Samuel Dewey, who has years of experience on The Hill himself, explains how to thrive as a Congressional Staffer.

Stay Organized

Late-night meetings, virtual get-togethers with constituents, conference calls, and committee meetings—these are just a few of the things Congressional Staffers will be asked to juggle for their bosses. And a sure way to get into trouble is to drop the ball

It can all become very overwhelming very quickly if you fail to stay organized. One great way to do this is to keep a daily To-Do List. However you decide to keep this list—on your phone or on paper—make sure it’s accessible wherever you go. 

Another key point is to remember your time is the Member’s. You are always on call. Calendar every event in your life on a master calendar—both personal and private. 

Return All Inquiries

When people reach out to you, you should aim to respond to promptly. Being on top of all phone calls and emails will show that you are reliable and that you care about what they have to say. You should always have your phone with you. As we said before, your time is the Member’s and Congressional crises have an odd habit of occurring outside of normal business hours. 

Establish Relationships

Things get done on Capitol Hill through relationships. As a staffer, it is essential that you establish relationships with other people. Meet as many people—on both sides of the aisle as you can. Samuel Dewey says this will not only serve you well in your current role but could lead to other opportunities in the future.