Johan & Marguerite
textline at gmail.com
Sun Oct 26 14:55:51 UTC 2014
2014-10-26 14:40 GMT+01:00 <steve at asklater.com>:
> Why don't we make the discussions here about ideas and models for how
> the OSMF could work instead of personalities and trying to blame people for
> our failings? It's sad reading “manifestos” that are really just negative
> historical accounts instead of narratives of how to make things better.
> Trying to blow someone’s candle out doesn't make yours any brighter.
As an ordinary osmf member, I wonder what the fuck is happening here. Henk
is "attacked on my integrity". Frederik is "frustrated". Simon resigns
because Steve is a candidate. And Steve is being attacked immediately after
standing for elections. Then I read that the board in the past two years
has not been able to make a decision on face-to-face meetings, is having
problems dividing tasks who's responsible for membership database, is
having problems sharing information on the memberships, has difficulties in
the way meeting minutes are drawn up and is not in control of
finances/financial risks. Where it looks like person A constantly wanting
to steer to the left and B to the right, because A wants to go left.
I know some of the board members, and I know they are smart. But it seems
being smart is not good enough to get the board out of its problems. The
above things are a symptom for an underlying problem. I completely miss
soft skills in this discussion. Have for example Henk and Frederik already
tried to say five positive points about each other, and to each other, in
the past two years? Has anyone in the board facilitated
cooperation, respect, culture and teamwork? The IQ is there, but where is
> In that vein, I think a key to making the board work is to meet in person
> with a facilitator. We used to do this (but never used a facilitator). It's
> clear that the strong personalities without trust has led to fragility of
> the board. Meeting in person used to be a highlight of the board. A chance
> to get to know each other and understand how each other communicates, and
> what's important to them.
> Let’s restate the mission and understand why we're here. There have been
> long threads on stagnation. Let's understand why people feel that way and
> turn it around. Let's make the best map possible.
> Let’s make SOTM central to the OSMF again. It's the key place community
> members meet from across the world to share ideas and talk about what
> mapping they've done. It's a chance for OSM to push new boundaries and
> engage new communities.
> Let’s find a way to use paid staff to give the board bandwidth and plug
> holes. To facilitate volunteers not to replace them. Let's use the
> knowledge and experience of people who've done that before (there are some
> on the board) to avoid past mistakes.
When a board fails to be competent enough on details like division of
tasks, setting up face-to-face meetings, transparancy and finances then I
presume the coming 12 months till the next election will be needed to make
the board healthy and competent, in order to make the leap to dealing with
the real problems. Solving these real problems can do without respectless
battling each other on arguments. World War 1 ended up in trenches. The
current board ended up in trenches. There is a real risk that the new board
will end up in trenches again. For the coming year, I'm against goals (that
I also find crucial for the future of OSM) like restating a mission,
getting paid staff in etcetera.
In the past I've done things like Belbin and Insights Discovery. Just take
a look at pages like
These are tools helping a team functioning better.
So, a question to all candidates for the coming election: what will you do
to make the board run as a team?
aka It's so funny
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