Tina Clarke is a Transition Trainer and more recently a REconomy trainer, helping to develop new REconomy trainings for Transition groups. On Tuesday February 11th between 19.00 and 20.30 GMT (14.00 -15.30 EST), she will be presenting, along with Transition Network Funding Manager Nicola Hillary, a free webinar called Getting Ready to Fundraise – resourcing your group or projects. This seemed like an opportune time to catch up with Tina to hear her thoughts on resourcing Transition initiatives.
- Reflection on the relationships, communications and dynamics of the overall system
- Posing critical questions and assessing the work based on Transition and permaculture principles, ecosystem resilience, and the needs of future generations
- Sharing the insights, critical analysis and learning with funders – inviting them to become partners in the exploration. In the process, gently asking funders to join us in transitioning our lives and all of society’s institutions.
- Deepening the “Inner” conversations. Making time for explorations of decision-making and power, control and flexibility, principles and community agreements to guide our work and life together, and unconscious fear, grief, and other wounds that get in the way of whole-hearted collaboration and inclusion of everyone.
- Showing the need. We may be convinced that something is needed and wanted by the community, but funders need to see evidence. Sometimes that means obtaining organizational partners who write letters of commitment – pledging to help achieve project goals. Sometimes that means gathering statistical data or stories from the people who will be served. Sometimes you may want to work with a university or do your own research into community needs and/or the potential of the project. What will the funder need to see to be persuaded that there is a real need for the program?
- Program planning. Get together with your teammates and partners and spend some time thinking about what you are trying to accomplish, and how you can together get the work done. Think through the timeline of activities, and what needs to happen before the next thing can happen. Businesses often use a GANT chart, or you can do a simple strategic plan. What are your outcomes? How will you measure effectiveness? It’s tempting to get excited about an idea. Be sure to write up your program plan to address challenges and obstacles you might face and ensure successful completion of your goals.
- Interpersonal Rivalries: Seeking to Control, Claim and take Credit. A Quaker colleague, a modest, plain woman in her 50s who had been extraordinarily successful in lobbying Members of the U.S. Congress, told me: “The more credit you need for your work, the less you will get done.”
Invest in inner work and deeper connections. Make time to hear about each other’s dreams for contributing, and role(s) they’d like to play.
Invest in regular retreats and periodic strategic planning processes.
When the ego comes up (and it will! In all of us!), consciously choose to be vulnerable about what you want rather than manipulating to try to get what you want or prevent others from doing their piece.
Be willing to go smaller. One of the great woundings for many of us who have had “success” in the world is that we develop an identity around our accomplishments that inadvertently excludes others from contributing their gifts, and isolates us. If Transition initiatives really want to catalyze “bottom-up” collective genius, we must make it our practice to both offer our energy and encourage the genius around us. If we see ourselves as sharing Transition income instead of possessing it, and sharing the jobs of facilitating and supporting, rather than being the one to direct things, our work together will be much more fun, fulfilling, and successful.
- Write clear job descriptions and be transparent about pay rates, recruitment processes and how people get allocated paid work in a fair way.
- Regularly reinvent structure. Like a cell dividing, and an organism growing, what worked at one level of existence and production will not really work as you get larger and more complex. Welcome growth. Be a “Learning Organization”. Grieve losses and welcome the new excitement and opportunities of more complex systems. (And for a fascinating process that helps organizations clarify roles, tasks and responsibilities, ask Nick Osborne about Holocracy.)