SoFA - where are we going (SoFA strategy Year 2021-2022)

What is next for SoFA in the next year? (SoFA years are counted from summer to summer.)

A little history:

  • Year 1 was about SoLT
  • Year 2 we started SoLT and wrote the book Many Voices One Song
  • Year 3 was SoFA as a membership organization and Academy.
  • Year 4 - Strengthening Organization and Ease of Replicability Indicators
  • Year 5 - Grow Wide, Grow Deep

So, what’s next?

General Circle talked about the overall direction and had a few ideas (my summary):

  • Strengthen inner capacity (“Let’s know each other/ourselves”, “a powerful team”, closing the gaps we have in SoFA, focus on the people,
  • More systems support (“Replicability 2.0”, reinforce and refine, integrate, connection to social justice)
  • outward focus: change in concentric circles (ripples)

The strategy we’d come up with is both descriptive (“that’s what circles are talking about right now”) and prescriptive (“what we should focus on more is…”). It’s also both centralized and decentralized. (More info) Obviously, it doesn’t have to be one thing. It can be many things.

From what you see around you and in SoFA, what do you think? What’s next?

Additions from members of General Circle? @rodger.mattlage @andreas.jonsson @nora.plaza @lea.shani @andreas.jonsson @cj.oreilly @jerry.koch-gonzalez @rhonda.baird

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I agree with the internal aims. It seems very wise to strengthen our internal processes and bonds with each other in a growing organization.

Externally I would like to reach out to more organizations that share a similar approach to societal change as is implicit in sociocracy. We are already strong with the ecovillage community, the permaculture community, the NVC community, the Teal community and the cooperative business community. We could do more outreach to the broader Agile community and movements around Rober Kegan, Lisa Lahey and Gary Hamel, and we could delve into more of the structure on postideological political parties.

But mostly I would like to explore entirely new collaborations like the Game B community, the political metamodern movement, the (nordic) bildung movement, the gift economy/sacred money movement, the purpose driven investment community, and the integral spirituality/mindfulness/self-improvement movement. And I would like to gather people from all of the movements that we are associated to together in an effort to create a mutual beneficial collaboration.

I have made a forum thread about it here:

I will very much appreciate any contributions to the thread. I feel increasing collaboration could really have potential for accelerating the change we want to see in the world. Primarily because it seems that these movements are actually looking for tools like the ones we have in sociocracy. It could also potentially be an avenue for more efficient funding and growth for SoFA. (Many of these have strong ties to the Silicon Valley community and people with much to much money on their hands). :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:

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Weaving the Web

  • -strengthening connections among SoFA members world wide
  • strengthening connections with and among ally movements
  • -interdependent, regenerative
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As a working member who recently joined SoFA, I would really appreciate the clarity on two things.

  1. When creating sociocracy contents, who is SoFA’s audience? I noticed this question keeps poping up in different places.

  2. From the volunteer’s perspective, it would be preferable that the volunteer first experiences filling clearly defined operational roles (such as a Zoom host for a slot in the conference) than first joining a circle that has to define the operational roles. Some clarity on different kinds of operational roles, general workflow, which roles are suitable for volunteers, which roles are paid, how much time commitment needed etc. would be really helpful.

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It seems like you’re wanting more along the lines of the systems support & ‘inner capacity’ - replicability, re-enforcement, integration, building teams, etc.)

The specific things you are mentioning a from lack of clear systems since sofa has grown so much in the last year or two.

Does that seem true?

The specific pieces you mentioned are good to get on a clear on, and it’s a part of the “help desk” model described in the “What does it mean to be a sector circle” document, and I think can be answered by circles in the help wanted section of the forum.

I agree that creating clearer systems to accept volunteers are important, and the help wanted section is one attempt to help create that, but a few more pieces are needed to tie it all together :slight_smile:

I’m excited about the newly developing Wiki policy manual to help tie all these systems together! Stay tuned!

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I like this Weaving theme…

Weaving internal connections… weaving external connections…

weaving the web

To me, it’s about tying the elements together and making sure there aren’t loose ends, and all the connections are made within and without.

Building teams, building networks, refining the systems that keep the connection alive.

Alrighty, this topic is now going to GC!

Agree on strengthening connections among SoFA members world wide to create more of a sense of belonging and togetherness.

I’ve noticed so much happens in informal conversations, so something like the Donut app could be an interesting way of helping create space for those:

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Posting for social media for SoFA I keep asking myself this same question:

Who are we really speaking to?

It seems like leaders and facilitators as a start. Then I ask:

How can we bring those people value on social media?

Which leads me to ask:

Who is SoFA really? What do we stand for as a brand? How can we communicate at the level of identity so the people we’re serving want to be a part of what we’re building?

Similar to Apple: “Everything we do, we believe in changing the status quo. We just happen to make computers…” They’re leading with the why and beliefs, so what’s our version of that?

In term fo strengthening partnerships / ally movements, are there 10-20 key relationships that make the most sense to focus on new or old?

Yeah. There’s a sub-network of organizations that are in similar spaces and mutually supportive and that complement each other - Prosocial.world, SoFA, TransitionUS and Transition Network and a few others. I am building that network right now, and it’s exciting - especially since it’s a space where everyone knows each others’ tools really well and one doesn’t have to explain a lot.

So, there’s stuff happening!