[Osmf-talk] Tone

Henk Hoff henk.hoff at osmfoundation.org
Sun Oct 26 17:25:41 UTC 2014

I've been a supporter for a face-to-face (F2F) meeting from day one.
Because in-person meetings are an important ingredient for good teamwork .

I don't want to start another blame-game here, so I keep it to myself. What
did I do. For example: January 19th I've proposed this to the board:

*"Like I mentioned during our last Board meeting, I feel we need to have a
F2F the sooner the better. *

*However, looking at the responses so far, it looks like it's going to be
an extended Board meeting. When we do that, we're still ignoring the
elephant in the room and the result will be a self fulfilling prophecy. *

*In order to make it a succes, we need to use the weekend to take a step
back and touch base again. Find out what brings us together; our common
ideals; why we joined the Foundation; why we ran for Board. *

*We should all ask ourselves questions like:*
*- How do we each see the project and the Foundation (as an organisation):
it's goals, structure, responsibilities.*
*- What are our (Foundation) main challenges for the coming years.*
*- What do we need to have / do in order to be able to handle these
challenges *

*Currently (at least, that's how I perceive it), we all come up with (or
working on) solutions to which the problem or the urgency of it is not seen
all of us. *
*We need to have a common understanding of the challenges that are ahead of
us in order to deal with them.*

*I know a mediator who is willing to look around in her network to find a
suitable facilitator. One that is a complete outsider; who knows no-one of
us (including me) and who has no ties with the project / Foundation. But,
on the other hand, is experienced in handling these kind of
*I strongly believe we need to have such an outsider to guide us through
this process.*

*When no-one has strong objections, I'm willing to organise this. Or if
someone else feels he/she is better suited to pursue this, that's fine with
me as well."*

I'm still a strong supporter of a F2F and I will continue to be an advocate
within the next board to have one as soon as possible. And no, you don't
need to become each others BFF.

Also, I'd like the next chairman to be a person who can bring people
together. Who can motivate people. Who can build bridges. Further I'd like
to see how we can use the individual qualities of all board members to make
OSM better, to make the OSMF better, to make the board better. Those Belkin
or Insights Discovery methods can be of good help with that, thanks for the


2014-10-26 15:55 GMT+01:00 Johan & Marguerite <textline at gmail.com>:

> 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
> the EQ?
>> 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.
>> Steve
> 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
> https://bemycareercoach.com/soft-skills/list-soft-skills.html and
> http://www.inside-inspiration.com.au/insights-discovery/insights-colour-energies.html#.VE0D5E10yUk
> 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?
> Cheers, Johan
> aka It's so funny
> The Netherlans
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OpenStreetMap Foundation
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henk.hoff at osmfoundation.org

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