Meeting Minutes/2020-04-18 Hackweek - organization structure

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organization structure meeting

present: Nick, Edvard, Ludo, Marco, Dario, Mikael, Michal, Abel, Julien

time: 1h

purpose / expected outcome

initial motivations for joining meeting. what we would like to get out of it. where do you start from?

time: ~1m per person

edvard:

  • explore everyones standpoint, on how trustroots should organise itself
  • practical outcome of how to proceed, another meeting? or initial ideas? even if just to have another discussion?

ludo:

  • learn how trustroots is structured
  • would like to be involved in decision processes to feel part of community
  • first understand how it is now, then to understand how things should be changed or maintained

marco:

  • to hear thoughts from nick, and motivation for this session
  • interested in how it’s currently structured
  • skeptical how much we can fit in this session, maybe needs more
  • not too big, have discussion on a smaller number of points

dario:

  • generally, to evaluate how chaotic do-cractic approach works for us
  • see what ideas the new team has for organisation
  • would like Mikael involved too in the discussions

michal:

  • would like to listen, and speak if something comes up
  • curious about the topic in general, and for trustroots in general

mikael:

  • baby steps of humble start to understand where we are at
  • don’t need to come up with solutions right now.
  • get picture of ideas and possible directions
  • vision and mission are huge things to do, lots of meetings and talkings will be needed for those.
  • to understand and hear people

abel:

  • wider discussion, not just about trustroots
  • liking the thinking about different approach to make a sustainable life
  • getting an income coming from communities and collaborative work, different from usual work + hobby model, radical change
  • also like the idea of manifesto/philosophy that can be applied in other projects/living, will get more and more practical with the way work/remote work/vaues are going, not just job work, but care and community work
  • not expecting a outcome just in this small meeting, but good to work on this
  • would like to write this manifesto!
  • offline vs computer time harmony/bal

nick introducing the topic(s)

time: 5-10m

how trustroots is organized at the moment:

  • original structure was quite hierarchical
  • is about to change cause it prooved not to work so well, and the original team is less involved now
  • lean startup philosoph - move fast and break things
  • do-ocracy model - being able to do and not being blocked

some numbers:

  • 40.000 registered users
  • 14.000 active in last years
  • 1000 weekly active users
  • 122 slack channel members
  • 5-10 active slack members (hackweek peek 20-30 people)
  • 3 GitHub owners
  • 28 GitHub developers, of which 2 were significantly more active than the others
  • 4 people with server access
  • 8 people approx signed the paper for member data access
  • call every two weeks, 3 to 5 people joining usually
  • 3 board members Kasper, Natalia, Mikael

Reading materials

input from other people

time: … 3-5m each?

anything, but could also think about questions:

  • how would you like society to be organised
  • how would you like trustroots to be organised
  • how would like your own life to be organised

marco:

  • huge topic don’t know where to start, nice to be able to participate and see people have it on their mind
  • software development world (conferences, etc), seems nice and impressive but also skeptical and see 2 faces of it, everybody thinks they need big sponsors, e.g. open source conferences funded by big companies that he is quite critical of. missing critical discussions around who you collaborate with, and how influences works. e.g. companies like google, who contribute to open source, but also doesn’t like this company.
  • personal/financial aspect, always have to care for how you make a living, even with a simple life you need some amount of money, depends on where you live, we hvae different backgrounds and stability, e.g. what happens if you have money, some peopl get crazy, for others it is easy, and don’t feel threatened

mikael:

  • where to start…
  • co-founded this whole thing, previously working on bewelcome, and with others that worked on couchsurfing… underyling mission for life for a long term, also with hitchwiki
  • personally wanting to have a sizable impact in the world, have helped nestle sell more ice cream, but don’t want that kind of impact
  • now, want to help young people regardless of whether they have money to travel and meet other people, sharing, and all that stuff
  • therefore trustroots to have big impact, long term would like it to be able to run a sizable project, thinking big, e.g. mozilla foundation, greenpeace, wikimedia. organisations with a vision/mission i the world, clear focus on what they want to get done, relying on volunteers, that drive impact/organisation forward. organisation is there to ensure volunteers can be effective.
  • personal side: don’t need to work on trustroots, trying to not to be the bottleneck, an enabler for others. sometimes might sound like being sole visionary, but that’s not how I nercsarily want thiss org to be. helpful to have people with strong vision, but important that everyone can input and participate. but from experience effectiveness comes from several people …
  • from bewelcome, want to avoid the informal hierarchy, supposedly democratic, but in reality it doesn’t happen, would like to stay pragmatic when thinking of this.
  • lets see! I’d like this to be long term stuff, 10-15-20 years… more people to think in that way…

michal:

  • really is a big topic! haven’t figured out what I’d like to say
  • don’t tend to philosophize so much, in a long talk get bored usually, but not right now
  • value freedom, community, and experimenting generally, in theory, try things and see if they work, like to see and observe
  • value software as something to enable people to more together in the real world, trustroots does do this
  • a non-philosophising anarchist

julien:

  • not much to say, just arrived
  • been in hospex since hospitality club, couchsurfing smelt fishy
  • very active in bewelcome, part of board, when trustrots appeared, disppearing from bewelcome, talking, not doing, don’t want to talk too much because of this!

dario:

  • really like anarchist/chaotic way it’s organised, but not working in a long for a long scope/scale/size, at some point if we want it to be a long term thing, we need people who are more involved than just in a little bit of their free time
  • either having a basic income from somewhere, or somehow paid by the community, long term seems unavoidable. would prefer it if it didn’t happen, as experienced it in another organisation, as it creates more hierarchy and lots of obstacles to tackle
  • not clear how decisions are made right now, just because someone is doing something, maybe bi-weekly calls enabled decisions as they considered something importat
  • on personal life: would liket contibute to things that put people in power, in constract to big companies that people get more and more dependent on. would like to work less (whihc involves workin a lot more right now ;)

abel:

  • mostly said stuff before (see above)
  • was reading about de-growth - we should work less, fewer working hours, there is still a lot of work that is not paid. 20 hours in computer work, then rest of time in other stuff (q: now or intention?) -> intention becomes real purposing it for now :).
  • income stuff, something we’d have to think about if we want to make it sustainable and accessible. currently something you can’t have as a priority as you need income from elsewhere.

ludo:

  • important to talk about these topics, and about money. we can’t avoid money talks and discussions, even if it’s not urgent right now and don’t need a decision
  • hard talking about if moneyshould be involved in the project or not, it brings in our personal perspectives o how we deal with money in our private lives, so decisions and discussions can be hard
  • line between ho trustroots is right now and a drift in a “corporation” direction is thinner than we think, focus should be on participation, to make it affordable, if this means money that could be,the most important is that everybody can start from the same point, give the possibility for everyone to participate. e.g. if people want to join a meeting but has no money to get there, would be nice to support that.
  • society and personal life: exactly how trustroots is :) welcome everyone that has thoughts and contributions, at least listen to them. felt very welcomed when joining trustroots hackweek. want life and society to be like this too.

edvard:

  • come from background of organizational development, trustroots and general question is a question of structure. structure is where everything manifests in the end. esp. for trustroots et al that motivates people by values. important that structure matches inherent beliefs that we share. share mikaels view that structure should be explicit. if we tried to organise more people, and tried to provide overview of how it works, would be helpful to have it explciit.
  • how it should be: manifestion of values in structure. hierachy is unavoidable if you manage more than 10 people. the problem is not in hierarchy, but how you design organisation. hierarchy that matches our values and style is permableae (allowing to move inside it), alow collaborating in different roles without barrier. structure is up for constant change, need to adapt to different situations in the phases of the project. design/change in structure should be a participative process.
  • main point: designing a structure we’d all like to contribute to and work inside of. long process of establishing that, iterating it and keeping it alive.

discussions

mikael:

  • money side of things, people need money, but what else do people need. they want to learn. often students, learning programming and how to participate. can be more value than money as time is scarce. levelling everyone up, growing others.

next steps / action items

abel:

  • could try to in next (of the bi-weekly) meetings, have a time for discuss this. -> Continous discussion
  • if people are up for writing some of this manifesto stuff, to take these things together, would like to join (seperate thing, maybe other non-trustroots people could join too)

julien:

  • no comments

michal:

  • not thought about it :) will let you know if I figure something out

ludo:

  • same, not sure concretely how we can go on, didn’t think about it yet
  • maybe we could split topics, which we feel are more short term, putting everything together in this organizational box could be chaotic

dario:

  • also don’t know how to proceed :)
  • should be a follow-up, would like to talk more about how decisions are made, and to note it somewhere

edvard:

  • have an idea! : would look into the tools used in his consultancy on how they guide other companies to develop their way of decisions making, take care of organising the next meeting to get together, would love to collaborate
  • in general, come to a common demoninator of our values, we listed a lot of things, and we have to elaborate our overlap and the direction of trustroots that us (the people working on it and the community), then derive a structure from that purpose, a bit fuzzy about how, will work more on- it!

mikael:

  • would love edvard to drive to the next meeting, and anyone else, proactiveness is very cool!
  • would encourage to get as practical as possible next step, maybe all gather a list individually, or what slows us done,what is negative, what could be better, maybe don’t need solutions at that stage. then come togeter to find solutions. identifying practical things we’d like to improve. find structures to address those negative things.
  • practical questions: if we did receive donations, what would it look like. decision making is a good thing to look at.
  • hard to plan too much ahead, be experimental!
  • Get as practical as possible
    • Gather a list on your own times: find out what slows us down, or harms us, all the negative things that could be better in Trustroots. No need to come up with solutions yet, just problems. :-)
    • Talking points: * What kind of structures or systems would help? * What if we receive donations? How would it look like? * Decision making is big topic that is helpful to talk about, but also good to experiment rather than try.
    • Would love if Edvard you can drive the next one! :-) Thanks for stepping up!

marco:

  • feel a bit overwhelmed, so much inputs of many different topics, always veryinteresting to get the personal stories, in organizational discussions you create something artifical that doesn’t belong to the people themselves. really impressed. have to think about all the ideas.
  • would love to be part of a community has a structure that represents the people, not one from above. quite impressed that it can work to have these very different levels of knowledge, also very complex to have good discussion
  • hard to see how to make decisions
  • not clear who are the main people from the outside

nick:

  • Fail to dream about the future, and you forfeit your role in its creation.

  • Keep your eyes on the stars and your feet on the ground


chat messages from jitsi

pad for note https://codi.kanthaus.online/trustroots-organization-structure# or versio with edit link: https://codi.kanthaus.online/trustroots-organization-structure?edit 11:00 Julien Sounds like mozilla Ah... lol 11:42 Abel I like more the WMF example since mozilla it's mostly founded by Google and this kind of stuff. Besides WMF gets all its income from donations 11:43 Julien Democrac 11:44 Abel

  • WMF stands for Wikimedia Foundation

11:45 Julien +1 Abel 11:45 Mikael Abel: agree that about Mozilla. 😃 ❤️ love the chaos, but yes let's get more organized 😄 11:50 Julien Paid worker? 11:51 Mikael big yes to increasing accessibility and barrier to participate. 11:59 👋 👏 ^ ah that is applause 11:59 Abel ❤️ can work as well 11:59 Mikael 🙌 11:59 Julien Everyone seems to want a full time project manager without saying it 12:01 Mikael hehe 12:01 dario I forgot: +1 for Mikael's approach of accepting that there is a hierarchy instead of hiding it, and work on that 12:04 Julien Gift eco +1 12:04 Mikael gift eco +100 12:04 Julien He didn't include so many things... 12:05 dario @nick: what was the text/book/author you were mentioning again? 12:07 Abel disco.coop ? https://disco.coop/manifesto/ or you're refering Adam Smith "The wealth of nations"? 12:09 michal that's the one, disco.coop 12:09 Abel 😛 12:09 dario adam smith, thx 12:09 Julien My personal goal is to start learning Javascript, just so you know Be short everyone I remember already reading a Trustroots manifesto 12:12 Mikael Get as practical as possible - Gather a list on your own times: find out what slows us down, or harms us, all the negative things that could be better in Trustroots. No need to come up with solutions yet, just problems. 😃 Talking points: - What kind of structures or systems would help? - What if we receive donations? How would it look like? - Decision making is big topic that is helpful to talk about, but also good to experiment rather than try 12:17 Julien I want 12:17 Mikael on TR decisions are not made, they happen 🙊 haha, Something to improve likely is documentation/transparency/acknowledgement of people who are driving decisions. yes to high-level vision and dreaming: https://www.trustroots.org/faq#what-is-your-long-term-vision https://www.trustroots.org/team 12:24 😃 Type a message