Friday’s Thoughts: People Aren’t Widgets

“Joshua Odintz, who served as tax counsel to the Senate Finance Committee until 2009, worked with Olson for years and says her contribution to tax reform is critical. ‘She represents the broad taxpayer base who do not have a lobbying group to represent them on the Hill,’ he says. ‘Does that translate into action? Well, sometimes … but there have to be people that take up her issues.’

“In the meantime, Olson is applying thousands and thousands of Band-Aids. And she can push the IRS to better address the complexity of people’s lives—or at the very least be more helpful on the phone. ‘Taxpayers bring a whole bundle of life circumstances, history, economic circumstances, baggage, biases. … They bring a whole bundle of things to the table. Your job is to listen to what they’re bringing,’ she says. ‘Don’t think of these people as widgets.'”

–From “The People vs. the IRS,” Businessweek, 4/5/2012

(So, this quote is a little out of context, but the full article is a great read. Thanks to the wonderful HIPS community for sending it my way.)


About the Author

Jeff Raderstrong

Jeff Raderstrong

Jeff Raderstrong is the Founder and Principal of UnSectored. He has run successful, long-term online campaigns in the social innovation space, such as developing and executing the social media strategy for Leap of Reason, a book on nonprofit outcomes management … Continue reading

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