Community Call Meeting Notes: February 2016

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Last week’s community call was really productive. Thanks to everyone who attended one of the two calls (you know who you are!) I appreciate your commitment to the community and eagerness to share your local best practices.

The focus of the call was to go over the issues identified in the most recent NetSquared Organizer Survey. Generally you seem like a happy bunch, but we identified a few issues. We discussed some solutions during the call, which I captured below.

You can also review the live notes from the call or listen to the audio recording.

Key Takeaways

Orientation of New Organizers

This process can be improved. We will implement the following fixes:

  1. Pair new organizers with Ambassadors, who will mentor and help with onboarding (in progress!)
  2. Create series of welcome and tip emails for new organizers (if you know how to do this in CiviCRM contact me!)
  3. Update the first steps section of the Organizers Handbook with a clear recipe for the first three events (scheduled for April)

Communications Channels

This is a bit of a mess. Organizers are unclear about which platforms which be used for inter-NetSquared communications. We decided on the following approach.

EVERYONE

Email

This is the universal communications channel. Everyone is expected to be in the Google Group so that you can receive email announcements and participate in discussions of interest to the whole community.

OPTIONAL

For those who want a “chattier” platform there are two options. Pick whichever fits your style better.

Use these alternative platforms if you want more frequent NetSquared updates, want to share links or ask questions. Or you can use neither and just stay on the email list. :-)

Why two different options? Because our community is very diverse and no single platform besides email will meet the needs of our organizers. Splitting our community into two platforms isn’t ideal, but it’s more important that we go where our members are, rather than forcing them to come to us.

Learning from Each Other

There was a general consensus that getting NetSquared organizers together face-to-face is important. I will continue to advocate with TechSoup to find the resources to make this happen. But in the meantime we should get together online more often. Two options were suggested:

Slack “Office Hours” Chats

Paul Webster volunteer to collaborate with Eli on a series of Slack chats as a way to activate the platform and give organizers an opportunity to learn from each other. Watch your inbox for an invitation soon.

Google+ Hangouts

We will also schedule Google+ hangouts every second month for the rest of the year. I will set dates for these very soon.

Topics for both Slack chats and the Hangouts could include:

  • How to write an event description that will draw a crowd
  • Optimizing your meetup page
  • Recruiting and working with co-organizers
  • Partnerships that can help you grow your community
  • Three easy event ideas (that don’t require you to find a local expert!)

We need to be better at explaining NetSquared.

Yes! We do! Suggestions included:

  1. Videos that explain NetSquared and our impact (Quick test video from Eli here). Does it get close to what we need?
  2. Printable handout or brochure to help recruit new members

Other Ideas Discussed

  • Can we produce a #16NTC-specific piece of swag for NetSquared organizers attending the conference?
  • What other training would be valuable to NetSquared organizers?

Anything else I missed?