December Board / Community Meeting December 2020

Creating the Future's
Board / Community Meeting:
Monday, December 14th, from 10am - 12pm Pacific time

What does "ensuring the organization's integrity"
look like in practice?

Watch the meeting LIVE at this post. Just scroll to the very bottom of the page.
Details about how to participate are below.

Being an Integrity Board in Practice:
Much discussion led to our board's focus on integrity, to ensure the organization is walking the talk of our values. Our next steps are practical ones: determining what being an Integrity Board will mean in practice with real issues facing the organization. What does integrity look like in crafting strategy for our communications and PR plans? What does it look like in recruiting staff and consultants? In determining compensation? What will it look like as we recruit people to join our board?

These are the type of internal functions that support the work of organizations of all kinds. Sadly, applying an organization's values to those functions is often overlooked, under the assumption that how our "values" play out in practice is about programs, not infrastructure.

How many times have we all had that head-slap moment where we realize - for example - that the strength-based approaches we may be using for our programs are entirely absent in our human resource department or our fundraising?

That disconnect is not just something to lament or laugh about over drinks; it is harming the ability to create significant systemic change in our communities. That is why we hope you will be part of that discussion.

Item #1: Finalize our Values Statement Preamble
At our last meeting, we drafted a preamble to the Statement of our Values in Action. During the intervening weeks, we asked our community members to comment on that draft.

At our meeting in December, we will finalize that statement. The entire statement, including the long Values in Action document to which the preamble will be attached, will be our guide as we seek to walk our talk.

Item #2: Applying our Values in Practice
Our next step will be developing a rhythm for ensuring our actions are guided by our values. What questions will the board want to always be able to answer? What guideposts or checklists can people use in making decisions, to quickly know if those decisions are aligned - not in theory, but in practice? This will be an imperative step, creating systems that make it easy to know if something fits or doesn't. After all, if every action taken at Creating the Future - from hiring to PR to developing classes - requires  hours of discussion to ensure we are walking our talk, we will never accomplish our mission. For this Integrity approach to work in the day-to-day reality, we must have systems that are practical for those doing the work, as well as for those ensuring our values are honored in that work. 

The first test of this work will be discussion of our communications strategy. You can find the document summarizing that strategy at this link. And you can find the discussions that led to that strategy here.

That is where you come in.

• If you are interested in new ways of thinking about boards and/or governance in social change organizations...
• If you would like your voice to be included in this discussion...
• If you want to watch and think things through quietly alongside us...

YOU are invited to join in*, in whatever way you feel comfortable (see the various ways you can participate below).

How to Prepare
First, read through the links in the paragraphs above.

Next, please let us know if you plan to attend by sending a note at this link. Per the "How to participate" section below, please let us know which of the 3 ways you would like to participate.

This PDF graphic of the Catalytic Thinking Framework will give you an understanding of the flow of the conversation. We recommend printing it out or having it otherwise available during the meeting, to spark your thinking during the discussion. You can also follow along with the questions that guide Catalytic Thinking at this link. And to get a sense of the context of being an Integrity Board, this post introduces our thinking about that.

How to participate

If you have never been part of Creating the Future's work, all our strategy and board meetings are open and participatory, for anyone who wants to be part of the discussion. You can see more about that at this link.

Where we meet:

The board meeting will take place right here at this post. If the video does not appear precisely on time, please be patient – we are probably just running a few minutes late.

There are 3 ways you can participate in our meetings.

  • If your familiarity with and commitment to Creating the Future’s work - or your own experience with re-imagining organizational systems - is calling you to be actively involved in the meeting discussion side-by-side at our online “meeting table,” let us know, and we will send you an invitation to join us online.
  • If you want to participate but are unable to be in the meeting itself (perhaps you’re at work, or maybe at home with kids running around, etc.), watch the live-stream in real time and tweet your questions and ideas to us via the hashtag #CreatingTheFuture. We read those tweets aloud during the meeting, just as if you were there. This is a great first step for those who are not as familiar with our work, but want to get more involved.

(Please note: We will only see your tweets if you use the #CreatingTheFuture hashtag. In addition, during the meeting, we will not look at blog comments here at this post. While we will check those comments later, during the meeting we will only be following the #CreatingTheFuture hashtag in the Twitter stream.)

  • Lastly, if you want to simply watch, or you want to think about what you’re hearing and respond later – or if you will be watching the recording after the meeting happens – please add your thoughts into the comments here at this post. We will include that thinking into the mix of things.

We look forward to your being part of our discussion on Monday, December 14th!

* All Creating the Future's board meetings are open for anyone to participate, or to watch afterwards. To learn more about the thinking behind this openness - and our experiences with being open - click here.

Logistics: The meeting will happen right here at this post. Details are below.

Watch the meeting HERE on Monday
Note: if the meeting does not start on time please be patient as we may be running a few minutes late.

or, After the meeting - LISTEN TO THE MEETING HERE

Star Icon Blueor Download the MP3
(To download to your hard drive, right-click {or click and hold on a Mac} on the link above and select "Save Target As".. or "Save Link as"... depending on your browser)

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