Coordinating efforts and creating synergy between movements

There are many avenues for change aligned with our effort to promote sociocracy in the world today. I myself am a part of the political metamodernist community, of a post-ideological political party, of the Game B community, of the free school community, of the Bildung Network, of the purpose-driven business community, the Teal organization movement, of the eco-village community and of the permaculture community.

I see all of these movements, and more (environmental and climate movements, cooperatives, gift economy, integral spirituality, syntheist theology, Deliberate Developmental Organizations, deliberative democracy, constructive journalism aso) more or less build on the same meta-narrative and/or meta-analysis. And it seems obvious that we should coordinate our efforts with these other movements. And with several of them we already do that. But all seem to try and build their own movement and be the leaders that we long for - instead of giving followership to the collective movement for the meta-narrative that we share. In Charles Eistensteins words: “The more beautiful world our hearts know is possible.”

I would like to know where and how you believe it makes sense to collaborate with these, and other, movements and their specific organizations?

Some ideas are:

  • Aligning the meta-narrative and learning from each other’s insights
  • Coordinating strategic efforts across organizations
  • Giving followership to each other’s organizations rather than creating our own
  • Giving followership to each other’s concepts and terms rather than creating our own
  • Co-creating informational material for non-academics
  • Designing on-boarding paths for new members
  • Utilizing administrative resources across organizations
  • Designing exponential growth paths for the movements as a cluster

I am asking the same question in these organizations (for now):

  • Metamoderna
  • Game B
  • European Bildung Network (also just started an american division)
  • The Consilience Project
  • World of Wisdom
  • The Alternative (Denmark)
  • The Initiative (Sweden)

Please add to the list of organizations that you find to be meaningful to collaborate with.

Looking very much forward to hearing your thoughts! :grinning:

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I am a big fan of these questions! I’m asking similar ones in the context of movements for

  • youth power
  • mutual aid
  • abolition
  • decolonization and rematriation
  • desegregation and integration
  • collective impact
  • transformative justice
  • self-governance

Everything needs to work together.

I volunteer my organization, Youth Power Coalition, as a thought partner

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Thank you Deborah!
I have looked a bit into Youth Power Coalition before. But I should maybe take a look again.

For your organization, what are the primary needs around collaboration with other organizations?

Also, how do you picture a way to reach out to other organizations that would be practically feasible for you, and not just take up more of your time?

This is great!
As the holder of the role of external contact and partnerships, I am both intrigued and daunted. Here’s why: in my experience, “partnering” and “collaboration” between organizations is much harder than we think. Maybe even more so when they are decentralized. For example, if the two partnership coordinators from each organization talk, they can line up discounts for each other but really it’s Training Circle (or whoever) from each organization that decides that. If they want to partner on social media things, it’s Social Media Circle (or whoever) who decides. So it becomes much harder to make those things happen and make them happen for real. So I haven’t quite figured out how to operationalize partnerships in this context.

Aligning meta-narratives is the most intriguing to me here. For example, I’ve done a lot of that in talking with the Prosocial folks. It seemed so obviously a good fit, and still it took us surprisingly long to understand how we fit together. I think I understand it now, and that’s just the connection of the narrative in my mind, not for everyone else. We ran a Prosocial class internally in SoFA, and yet, it just takes so much effort to just align two small movements (prosocial and sociocracy) when the fit is so compatible already. Phew.
I will have the opportunity to play in the post-growth movement for the next 12 months and I’m curious how that will play out. Very different fields coming together there, and the question of how to make meta-narratives is my personal driver - besides caring about post-growth of course.

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One possible low-hanging fruit for collaboration could be actively sharing useful links in the contents and trainings that SoFA offers.

For example, for sociocracy to work smoothly it is important that core group members share clear vision, mission and aim. And currently sociocracy doesn’t say much about the process for how a group can arrive at more clear vision, mission, and aim. Then in the contents and the training, we could share a link to u.lab offered by Presencing Institute saying that you might find something useful there. Those who find u.lab interesting will register to the program and when they introduce themselves, some might say they heard about u.lab from SoFA training. Those in the u.lab program who didn’t know about sociocracy will now hear about sociocracy. New connection made.

Another example is when personal trauma or collective(societal) trauma get activated during the sociocratic meetings. NVC helps a lot during these conversations. And some issues go beyond inter-personal communication and leaders might not know how to handle this. And in the contents related to conflict resolution SoFA could also share a link such as Trauma-informed leadership course offered by Pocket Project, which is targeted for leaders in change movements, social enterprises, SMEs and NGO. Then similar to the process as described above, new connections among movements can be formed.

As SoFA shares more and more useful links to other tools and programs offered by other movements, other movements might start noticing sociocracy more and more as a viable option for decision-making framework for their organizations.

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I imagine it is very hard to align two organizations and exponentially harder for each additional organization we try and align also.

I am not sure exactly what the collaboration between Prosocial and Sociocracy For All is, but I imagine it is a more deep alignment than just being aware of what each is doing? I would instead try and just focus on getting to know each other and let anything grow from there.

I imagine specific collaborative projects to have their own unique life which applies to the specific context it is in. And these projects would be coordinated only between the people working on them.

What I would like to do first is to have representatives from each of these organizations to meet, so that we can just learn more about each other. I imagine a regular brief meeting where each participant shares what their work is, and what they need help with. Like a SCRUM stand up meeting. Contact info is shared, so that anyone can contact each other afterwards about specific issues. Work happens between meetings.

That is the most stripped-down format that I can picture. I imagine it would make it possible to allocate the time for participating for most.
The only challenge I see here, is the limit for how many can participate in one meeting.

If you by any chance have the time, I would love to talk to you briefly about the format and how to best facilitate a meeting? :slightly_smiling_face:

Ugh, time is so scarce right now, sorry :no_mouth:
The problem I see with what you propose is that it takes SO long to even understand what someone is doing. It’s not so easy to, for example, help me with a SoFA task because one has to know to many things to do one simple thing. As I’m sure @shala.massey-0626 @rhonda.baird and @cj.oreilly would confirm :crazy_face:

It really does feel to me like being limbs of the same body. Sure, your hand and my hand can do things together but each are so tied into their context. You kill it if you chop it off.

So in the standup, you’d be saying “I am working on a webinar on XX” and “I’m thinking what our privacy policy for the forum will be” – what could anyone from the outside contribute to that?

I’m sorry to be such a negative voice on this but the shared language, shared processes etc, that’s what makes collaboration possible that’s just SO much easier inside an organization.

Edit: There’s the offer and needs market format that the post growth institute started. That might be a format you’re looking for. The Offers and Needs Market

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Thank you, Ted

I have now outlined the initial concept that I find is most suited for commencing a collaboration in an easy way. If you find the time, feel free to add a comment.

I have also started preparing a list of potential organizations. Please add to it and share your comments here also.

Both documents are in this drive folder:
https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1mgW00Tl0gfbl9UDeR82G2hK7EpGniyl7?usp=sharing

For me, the most exciting are:

  1. collaborating on projects and activities
  2. shared/sharing vocabulary and tools
  3. conventional partnerships around co-branding, co-marketing, etc.
  4. collaborative fundraising (via shared projects!)

SoFA’s new Organizational Memberships and Partnerships are two ways of working toward this, as are collaborative grant writing and shared Member Development projects like the Warm Data events.

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I have now outlined the initial concept that I find is most suited for commencing a collaboration in an easy way. If you find the time, feel free to add a comment.
I have also started preparing a list of potential organizations. Please add to it and share your comments here also.
Both documents are in this drive folder:
Collaboration Effort - Google Drive

This is neat. We are working out the custom setup for organizational contact records for SoFA’s CRM and the idea of having a replicable ‘partnership exploring’ method is neat!

Currently partnerships are primarily held in Ecosystem Circle (by a role Ted fills!) and sometimes things like Content Partnerships might be initiated from Conference Circle or Outreach Circle. It would be neat to explore more way to spread that out a bit more so more people can effectively hold it!

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I should try and attend a warm data event next time it is up. I still have no idea what it means :grin:

I agree with your four points. Additional items for me is to learn from each other’s practice and copy what works, to make room for mutual criticism, and to cocreate the metanarrative that provides us the much needed sensemaking of the vuca world right now - a sense that we understand what is happening and understand how to move the world in the right direction instead of a wrong one. The road to hell is paved with good intentions, so it’s always good to get inputs from people who look at things differently than ourselves.

Mostly I’d just like to make it easier for things to happen between these organizations - no matter what that may be. I think it can be a huge benefit just to know about each other’s existence, and how to reach out in an easy way. :slight_smile:

On the role issue, I think it’s probably adequate to have one role mantain the domain of partnerships, as long as every member in the organization can propose it - although I’m not sure what a partnership entails? For most collaborations I wouldn’t think to do a partnership?

There is a role in SoFA Ecosystems Circle that deals with partnerships. While it’s centrally held, I agree with you that everyone should be able to propose a partnership.
Partnerships had been a bit on the backburner in SofA for a while because the pace of change was so fast internally. Yet, there have been a bunch of partnership activities.

Your lists are amazing! I wonder how you chose what goes on the list and what doesn’t?

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Perhaps a good topic for a future ecosystems circle meeting @rhonda.baird !

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You mean the list of organizations?

For starters I have followed Metamoderna and Game B for a while and have used their comparable meta analyses as criteria for the remainder.
The political parties I know from my work in The Alternative.
The sociocratic organizations I know from my work in SoFA.
Regenerators and Presencing Institute I know from my professional work.
The investment funds I know through my own impact investment interest.
The education orgs I know from my pedagogical background.
The rest are related directly to either of the ones above.

I tried to do a bit broader list. And I also have included a document now with suggestions for additional orgs. But I wouldn’t want to include an org if I’m not quite sure that they are in a sort of metamodern mindset where they are not seeking to produce antagonists either from conservatives or progressives. That seems to me to be the only viable starting point if we would want to be able to handle our manifold of crises.

I.e. to be simultaneously: conservatively progressive, pragmatically idealistic, poetically prosaic, collectively individualistic, rationally spiritual, cynically sentimental aso. :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:

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