What do our values look like in action?
That will be the topic of our community’s conversation (and board meeting) on June 12th at 1pm Eastern time. This post provides some background for that meeting. To watch or participate in the meeting itself, click here.
Organizational Values at Creating the Future
At Creating the Future, our mission is an experiment with a 10 year timeframe that began January 1 of this year: to see how much more humane the world could be in just 10 years, if the systems we encounter every day were bringing out the best in all of us.
With a mission rooted in bringing out the best in each other, our values are an active part of our day-to-day work. Defining the line between “yes” and “no,” those values create the cultural systems we rely upon to support everything we do.
We have learned over the years that when we are walking the talk of our values, things feel right and aligned – like they fit. And when we’re feeling uncomfortable, with that yucky feeling in the pit of our stomachs, we’ve learned that’s the signal to check for values alignment.
Statement of our Values in Action: Why Now?
It’s been 4 years since our board adopted our Statement of our Values in Action. During the organization’s infancy, when decisions were made by a small handful of people – the board – that statement served us well.
Much has changed since then. As a place for learning and exploration, our Research and Development work has led to new language and new ways of thinking about ourselves and the world around us.
Those learnings have led us to question whether the standard hierarchical organizational structure could accomplish a mission that is more movement-like in its scope.
In January of 2016, our board voted to blow up the standard organizational chart, to create a more commons-based, movement-like structure to support our work. The networked platform / ecosystem we have been working towards would allow anyone to plug in to further the work they are doing (or want to do) that simultaneously furthers our own mission. In our two years of research and discussion, that model continues to be the only way we see our mission spreading across the globe quickly and effectively.
The structure we envision models the kind of decision-making and leadership we want to see in communities all around the world – self-guided, responsive and creative, with shared leadership and local decision-making.
For that structure to facilitate accomplishing our mission,
the heart of that platform must be built upon our values,
with every system that supports the effort serving as a
living example of those core values in action.
Creating the Future’s values will define how anyone participating in any way at Creating the Future will interact with everyone else in that network, and how decisions will be made about absolutely everything. People will know what to expect from the people who represent the organization, and from the people and systems they encounter as they get involved with our work.
Which is why, on June 12th, our board will adopt a new Statement of Our Values in Action.
It is also why we are inviting you to be part of that conversation.
(Click here to learn how you can participate.)
Our “board” meetings are really community meetings. If you’ve watched or been part of any of our meetings, you know that it is impossible to know who is actually a bonafide board member and who is not (clue: our board is very small, so most people are NOT on the board!). This is why we are so confident that shared decision-making across a global network is possible, as long as the values at the core of those decisions are clear.
We hope you will be part of that discussion. Because walking the talk of bringing out the best in each other requires that we hear each other’s voices.
See you on June 12th!