[Osmf-talk] OSMF board face to face meeting (F2F) facilitation.

Frederik Ramm frederik at remote.org
Fri Dec 21 10:01:00 UTC 2018


I see your points but I don't think they are an issue for us.

Regarding diversity, if you are looking for a facilitator is it then not
best to have someone who offers *least* diversity? The role of a
facilitator is not to bring in new ideas but to bring out what's in
those they are working with.

Regarding Allen's history of working with other organisations, I browsed
the links you sent and it seems that you are mostly concerned about
Allen having advised HOT US Inc, on several occasions, to be less open
than you would have liked.

This was in the context of HOT US Inc asking themselves how to best
"become a multi-million dollar organization" (quote from Severin's
document). In such a context, dropping openness and transparency (which
can often mean a cacophony of voices) in favour of a streamlined
narrative to appeal to donors can very well be the right approach! But
the OSMF doesn't strive to become a multi-million dollar organization so
I think you don't have to worry here.

We discussed using Allen as a facilitator, not a business consultant.
The facilitator will certainly not be granted (quote from Severin) "a
growing importance in the strategic decisions of the organization". We
are not looking for strategic advice from Allen, just for the service to
help conducting a meeting.

A good facilitator helps people in a meeting express themselves and work
constructively. It is not the role of the facilitator to convince people
of one idea or another. Taken to the extreme, if a facilitator works
with a board of crooks aspiring to world domination through crime, then
the role of the facilitator is to help them to come up with the best
possible action plan for world domination through crime - not to make
them see the error of their ways an become good people.

I've worked with Allen in one board meeting in the past and while I
found his style a bit too American for my taste, I never had the
impression that he was recommending something that wasn't already there
in the people attending. I do not recall any advice to (quote from
Severin again) "speak externally with (that) one voice".

Having said all that, there are many other people out there who can
certainly fill the role of facilitator just as well. We haven't even
discussed timing and location yet, and Allen might not even be available
at the time and location we choose. Asking Allen to facilitate the
meeting has been *suggested* at yesterday's board meeting, it hasn't
been *decided*.


Frederik Ramm  ##  eMail frederik at remote.org  ##  N49°00'09" E008°23'33"

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