The Community Council dives into S3

2020-06-17 00:17
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Since April 2020, the first elected CiviCRM Community Council is a fact and I am proud to be a part of it! We have had our first two digital meetings across a few continents. The first meeting was basically just getting to know each other and have an initial chat about what we think our role should be. And accepting that we are never going to make everyone happy, do whatever everyone thinks the Council should do and meet the diverse expectations across the community.

But we certainly want to be transparent and tell you all about what we are doing and why. From our second meeting, we have a few initial actions like liaise with the Core Team and engage with the community. Other Council members can tell you about those actions in the coming weeks as we have decided to tackle the actions in various groups. I want to tell you a little bit about the action I am taking part in, together with Alice Aguilar, Neil Planchon and Rose Lanigan.

We (and I think I can safely assume that 'we' in this context is not just the Community Council but a lot of us) feel we need some kind of organizational structure, a collection of processes that help us to reach decisions and stuff like that. And we also agree that the hierarchical structures that we all grew up with do not match the character of the community, our do-ocracy, our global diversity or 'scratch your own itch' character.

Luckily there are some new organizational structures (for want of a better word) out there that seem to promise a closer match to our character: holacracy and sociocracy. During the Establishment Committee period I read up on Holacracy and it seems to be less applicable to our situation. It is an “all or nothing” structure which I am sure can do amazing things in organizations but makes it almost impossible to apply to the CiviCRM community. I also started investigating Sociocracy 3.0 or S3, which is a kind of mix between Sociocracy and Agile/SCRUM. It describes a number of patterns which you can implement at your own speed and to match your own needs.

So what we are starting to do now is seriously investigate what this S3 is about as we think it has the best fit with our community, what patterns we think we would like to use and how we can help the community with those patterns. Quite an interesting field!

Feel free to read up on S3, below you will find some introduction videos and a book I really liked. And we would love to hear any feedback or your thoughts on the subject so contact us on MatterMost: @ehommel, @neil, @aliceaguilar or @rose.

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