Transition from Board to Mission Circle -- Operational roles or Process roles?

I’m currently working on transitioning my board to Sociocracy, and I’m going to have to take it in smaller steps. In particular, I’m going to need to demonstrate the value of the process roles (Facilitator, Leader, Secretary) as we make those distinct from the roles of President, Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary.

As I work to incorporate these process roles, how do you recommend we think of these traditional “officers of the board” as they are written in our bylaws? Should the “officers of the board” be considered operational roles and we separately choose process leaders? Or should the process roles be understood as “officers of the board” or a mix of both?

For example, the President of the board could map to the process role as “Leader” and the Secretary could easily be “Secretary”. But, what about the “Facilitator” role? How then does the Executive Director fit in the mix?


In Treehouse Village Ecohousing (TVE), our Board of Directors has both “company roles” and “sociocratic roles.” These roles are defined separately and there is no assumed correspondence between them. In the past, the Board of Directors circle has been selected by the Full Circle through a sociocratic selection process (selecting a slate of 4-6 directors). Then at their first meeting the BoD holds selections for sociocratic roles of leader, facilitator, and circle secretary (our BoD has no delegate because the link to the Coordinating Circle is fulfilled by having the leader of CC sit as a non-consenting member at BoD meetings). They also select company roles of president, vice president, company secretary, and company treasurer.

At our most recent BoD selection, we decided to nominate the slate with company roles specified. So we actually selected a president, vice president, company secretary, company treasurer, and one other member, and it is up to the BoD circle to select their leader, facilitator, and secretary.

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Operational roles to cluster and hold the legal responsibility is a good move.