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Projects – Projects are already an important aspect of the Gogorobí Foundation. To get an idea of how it is like working to reach defined goals, a team needs to focus on the outcomes or products they expect to have. This practice consists of structuring and running projects. If the organization needs to conserve and spread their traditions of storytelling, having a time delimited for a group of tasks related to this subject is the best opportunity to learn. It is clear that for Gogorobí the first projects need to enclose communication and advertising in order to refine those practices. Working out their own projects, with a personal and effective approach, may bring audience and recognition for Gogorobí. It is also important to realize, as a start, how the management of the projects can work.
Meetings – Working individually can bring good results and insights but especially in the start it’s necessary to share ideas and gather group conclusions. Gogorobí could try to work with both synchronous or asynchronous meetings, as long as it clarifies the team purposes and needs to everyone: how to work, what to do, who is good at what. For the synchronous meetings it is better to meet offline, face to face and without any time pressure. The result will be a better working team. As for the asynchronous meetings, the team needs to experiment with a variety of tools and find out what works best for them.
Access to expertise – As a start, the organization already has a defined purpose and knows their environment, traditions and other important aspects. It is the moment to work with outside ideas and trying to find a solution, but not acquire expertise on these things yet.
Relationships – Relationships are fundamental for the first part. To create a good working team its participants should be able to know each other’s strength and weaknesses. Group forming meetings or activities together can be helpful for that.
Context – In the first phase it’s important to create a structure within the foundation. Later in the implementation phase the community can be included.
Content – The content is something Gogorobí should really work on. Their stories and traditions are interesting and they do have great content to present, but as a start coming up with new solutions for presenting it is important. Then after deciding how to present it, it is important to decide which content is relevant for each platform.
Individual Participation – As we already pointed out, firstly it is important that the NGO works well as a group. To receive the best possible outcome it is important that every individual gives their best, but first the leaders/leading team has to focus on what they want to achieve in the next time.
Open-ended conversations – Conversations and discussions are important to develop, progress and even visualize your thoughts. Nevertheless, in the Kick-start phase we think the team goals for conversations and meetings have to be fixed and clear. But, if necessary, they can also use the meetings to set subjects (not goals) for this kind of conversations and try to get together in a relaxed environment to let their ideas flow.
Cultivation – As a practice that brings and trains brains to work based in the team’s goals, cultivation is important to the kick start phase. The founders of an organization need to have more people supporting and enjoying to work with their ideas. However, its relevance is going to increase only in the Feedback phase. In the first part, sometimes having a lot of people could help, but since it is only the beginning and some things may not be that clear, trying to stick to founders and close collaborators can make the managing simpler and objective.
Projects – In this phase, the projects that were structured and developed during the Kick-start phase should be revised. After having a look to its planning and results the team can continue to work on them. But now with more knowledge about what the priorities of their projects are and what the weaknesses and strengths may be. At this moment it is also possible to add new projects. The increasing amount of experiences enables the team to continue with their organization work. Furthermore it helps them to not only have audience and recognition for their ideas but also to be recognized as a good working group.
Meetings – It is advisable to continue with regular meetings, but as the main goals are clear to everyone in the team and as tasks are divided the necessity of meetings decreases. Maybe now it will be more interesting if synchronous meetings take place online. The team should stick to the tools they have already realized and that are appropriated for the asynchronous meetings.
Access to expertise – The importance of expertises increases with the implementation of strategies. Now that the team knows how to support projects and have good relationships, they need to focus on what is important so that they learn and develop ability. Then choosing the right people and sources to help them with acquiring some expertise in new and helpful practices. This is essential to make an effective work when implementing strategies, since a team not always have all the knowledge it takes to reach their goals.
Relationships – Relationships still are fundamental for the work in the team. As everybody got to know each other better, the strength of the group increases. And this strength is useful to cope with upcoming projects, new events and people. If now more people are joining or getting in touch with the team it is helpful to have a good and strong inner relationships. It will help others to understand how the organisation works and what the best way is to work with them.
Context – It is time that the communities are included in processes as a part of the projects, however, the context of the organization remains the same. The structure within the foundation should have been created by now and the team knows who they are working with/for. Getting in the implementation phase doesn’t increase the context relevance. They just need to make it clear for the communities to be included.
Content – The relevance and quality of content should still be great. Now that it is going to be presented to the communities, the team needs to learn more about new contents/tools and has to make use of different online platforms. It is the most effective way to ensure that people all over the world will be able to learn what the foundation wants to achieve and by knowing more about it they will be able to interact. A new website with an easy possibility to donate money will help the foundation to receive donations. A contextualized and always updated Facebook page is necessary to get more audience. And there are even more possibilities to make great content available, such as blogs or microblogs like Twitter.
Individual Participation – The management team is able to work smoothly. This will guarantee that there are people to help others getting motivated. The implementation work requires some quality individual participation but still, it is important that everyone can work well as a team. More than new individuals, new communities are interesting because they can give new input that helps the NGO.
Open-ended conversations – With the start of the projects there will be a need to discuss whether things are working out fine and whether not and how to improve them. Now, as strategies are being tested/implemented, it becomes more important to develop and visualize personal and group thoughts.
Cultivation – The cultivation relevance still does not increase because the team is now only working to put into action what they think is right. Instead of bringing more “workpower”, having too many people working could become stressful and tiring. Also it is absolutely normal and healthy for the team that some things go wrong before the actual feedback phase.
Projects – Projects that were developed during the first and second phase should be checked if they are successful in three ways:
1. successful in spreading the idea of the foundation (popularity)
2. the management and implementation of the projects works well
3. the projects received good donation (financial part)
If yes, then it is advisable to develop new inner and external projects.
Meetings – As it is feedback time, meetings are now essential to share what happened during the last months. Now the team needs to meet up as much as they can: offline, online, synchronous and asynchronous meetings are welcome. They need to gather as much information as they can about how the world sees them. We think meetings are the best way to talk about the projects, the management and the financial aspects.
Access to expertise -There should be a leader/team that is able to change feedback into useful improving methods because it is time to learn how all the work is seen and accepted. But definitely not the moment to try and learn new things. To work with upcoming feedback it is necessary to have skills in communication, which should have been already developed so far.
Relationships – During the feedback phase it is not only important to know what the team within the foundation has to say, but also what suggestions the people in the communities have. One possibility is to create a feedback letter that will be handed to participants after the theaters/workshops/projects. Another possibility is to install an online feedback page on the website. The team needs to be opened to people’s opinions and know where to get genuine feedback. The online activity is really helpful here, specially on sites like Facebook.
Context – Now that the team is gathering information on the results of its work, it is really important to set a context. If the work doesn’t have a proper context, the organization may receive feedback from a group that it’s not their target. Analysing what kind of people have been interacting with the organization and trying to priorize what they can offer and how is a good idea.
Content – The content now plays an important role for the context. If the content is not good, the organization’s seek for feedback is not well contextualized. This can place Gogorobí in a unrelevant environment for them. As the feedback is received, it also becomes easier to shape and available the content in a right way.
Individual Participation – The feedback phase is based on the individual experiences of every participant. Their suggestions should be a big part of the feedback process. This aspect is is weighted very high during the feedback phase because an individual view of the other’s interaction can bring relevant and important ideas. People are often more able to see things clearly and in details when they work individually than when they are with others trying to stick to a certain kind of attitude.
Open-ended conversations – It is hoped that in feedback time, the team has a lot of opinions to discuss. What kind of people are interacting with the organization, how, the quality of this interactions. This combined with the need to discuss whether things are working out fine and whether not and how to improve them brings the need to really make some time for open-ended conversations.
Cultivation – Now it is the time when cultivation matters the most. If at kick start or implementation times it was important, now it is time to bring everyone the organization can to join the conversation. Both online and offline cultivation are important so a variety of experiences and opinions are analysed.
Very very nice job! I can now envision you packaging this up as part of your presentation and recommendation to your clients. One really useful method when consulting with a client is to ask them to fill out the spidergram and then compare results. This tend to open a rich conversation that might not have otherwise happened, and you can get down to the really important (and sometimes subtle) issues. It can also help prioritize. Some organizations might find they can only tackle one of the orientations at a time, others can move on multiple fronts.
This spidergram and your accompanying narrative can also be used as a basis for a monitoring (how are things going – process) and evaluation (what goals did we accomplish – change in world, etc) structure. Any good NGO should not just have their strategy, but they should have a way to measure it. The spidergram can be repurposed and you can attach what indicators or measures you might have in each of the prioritized activity areas.
You can also start to flesh our the tools, processes, etc needed for each. But it always anchored to the purpose you first described above.
Does that make sense?
Again, great job. I’m impressed!
Thank you for your comment Nancy 🙂 We are currently working on a detailed describtion of the spidergram. Should be here this evening!
Wow, very sophisticated analysis across the lifecycle. I am impressed! Now, if y’all could tell me a bit more about how you reached these conclusions — here in the comments is fine. And maybe give me some examples of the kinds of activities you need to support within any one orientation. For example, with meetings, is that synchronous meetings (like we do in Hangout or meetingwords) or asynchronous in discussion boards, blogs or even email? The more detail, the better! 🙂 THANKS!
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