Monthly Archives: October 2013

Facilitation Network Design Network Weaving

Structuring Chaos to Create Action

Novice volunteers got 100 people to Bikes and Brewvies - despite snow

Novice volunteers got 100 people to Bikes and Brewvies – despite snow

All-volunteer organizations are tough.  There is often a small core of volunteers ABSOLUTELY committed to the project, wanting help, and wondering where the help is.  That certainly applied (and still applies) to the Minneapolis Bicycle Coalition where I volunteer.

We’re working to engage more people, and we ARE engaging lots more people.  Of course, with more people we are more ambitious so we still want more help.

Last winter, the Coalition wanted to organize more events — rides, happy hours, tabling — places where we could connect with new people and engage potential supporters and members in new ways.  Of course, none of our existing volunteers had the time to make things happen, so I decided to try and Make Something Happen. read more »

Uncategorized

Matching Resources and Needs

Yesterday, I had the honor of facilitating “Building the Alliance — An Interactive Workshop Weaving our Alliance Network” with Kristin Johnstad of Johnstad and Associates, with planning help from Clarity Facilitation.

Alliance Members Connecting

Alliance Members Connecting (image credit JM Grants)

We started the 75 minutes by highlighting some of the core principles of Network Weaving (closing triangles, listening to understand, and doing small things as a way to build networks out of what seems to be chaos).  To make it very practical, most of our time was spent doing an interactive game where people identified resources they had to offer, things that they needed to do their work, and then looking for matches.

As a rough tally, I’d guess the group made around 75 specific, practical connections they said they planned to follow up on after the session.  Whether they all do or not, people connected, had fun, and walked away with a better understanding of Network Weaving.