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  • Eugene Eric Kim 6:11 pm on March 29, 2014 Permalink |  

    Hi everyone,

    Two quick announcements: First, I’m still on slate for self-organized bootcamp next Monday, April 7 from 4-6pm. The plan is to be in Oakland, but I still need to find a space. More details coming soon.

    Second, I’m doing an informal Google Hangout with my friend, Dave Gray, this coming Wednesday, April 2 at 12:30pm. We’re going to be discussing Learning via Artifacts, and we’ll be using Dave’s tool, Boardthing, to take live notes. Everyone is invited to join in on the note-taking! More details at:

    http://eekim.com/blog/2014/03/learning-via-artifacts-a-conversation-with-dave-gray/

     
    • Natalie

      Natalie 3:05 am on April 5, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I’ve got an all-day training that day, so if I make the bootcamp, I’ll be late. The degree of lateness will influence whether I stop by.

  • Eugene Eric Kim 5:29 pm on March 17, 2014 Permalink |  

    For those of you who don’t follow tech, there’s a huge debacle that blew up this past week around a company called Github and some very poor gender practices. Summary is here:

    http://techcrunch.com/2014/03/16/github-julie-ann-horvath-response/

    The reason I mention it is that some of you have expressed interest in holocracy, and the Github founders had a strong interest in the topic. I roll my eyes whenever I hear this, not because I think holocracy is a bad concept (it’s not, and it’s also a very old one), but because the current groundswell of interest around it feels so naive.

    Two friends from Code for America wrote some excellent blog posts on this matter this past weekend:

    http://cbracy.tumblr.com/post/79876957198/the-github-debacle-why-holacracy-is-bullshit
    http://mike.teczno.com/notes/on-managers.html

    I wrote my own commentary on this several months ago:

    http://fasterthan20.com/2014/01/the-real-importance-of-networks-understanding-power/

    I didn’t mention holocracy by name, but you might notice my subtle references to it in the piece.

     
  • Eugene Eric Kim 5:46 am on March 12, 2014 Permalink |  

    I loved yesterday’s bootcamp. I was so happy to see so many of you there, although I missed @anna341bc and @lauren. @marie and @eugenechan, you guys did a great job designing and facilitating, and I liked how you co-facilitated. Would love to see more of that! And @brooking, enjoyed our pair conversations!

    I’ve been sitting on, “I matter,” and the more I think about it, the more I like it as a proxy for thinking about aliveness (with @rapetzel‘s objection noted).

    Finally, to whomever took pictures of the action, thank you! Was glad to have them, and I even snuck in on a few. I’m assuming it was @eugenechan, but don’t want to make any assumptions! There aren’t any whiteboard pictures there, as I didn’t get them all. Eugene, feel free to upload them to the Google Drive folder, and I can supplement if I have better versions.

    Thanks again! I’ll email everyone about April and beyond.

     
    • Eugene Chan 6:27 am on March 12, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Thanks @eekim. It was a treat to get to work with @marie.

      It’s also quite amazing to watch people with high meeting IQs interact in a personal environment. Lots of interplay, some collaborative, some supportive, some dissentive, but all in the spirit of learning. I was fascinated and impressed.

      I thought that checkins would go way longer than it did. I wonder if was because the group wasn’t as familiar with each other that checkins were shorter.

      I did take the pictures as you guessed.

    • Natalie

      Natalie 6:45 pm on March 12, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Thanks, Eugene & Eugene & Marie. Even when I’m being crotchety, I’m still learning. πŸ™‚

  • Eugene Eric Kim 8:58 pm on February 18, 2014 Permalink |  

    Here’s my latest blog post on learning, including an anecdote about a few of you and bootcamp!

    http://fasterthan20.com/2014/02/repetition-is-the-key-to-learning/

     
  • Eugene Eric Kim 12:56 am on February 18, 2014 Permalink |  

    Excited to hear that @eugenechan and @marie‘s bootcamp has been rescheduled! On that note, I have a number of announcements regarding Changemaker Bootcamp.

    I have decided to delay doing another pilot indefinitely. I will reassess in July and again toward the end of the year. This was a very challenging decision, and it was not made lightly. I have a strong emotional connection to bootcamp in particular, but I am overcommitted right now, and when I did a cold, strategic assessment of all of my projects, Changemaker Bootcamp (in its current form) did not make a cut.

    However, there are many, amazing things that emerged from bootcamp that I will continue to support, and in some cases, I want to step up my engagement.

    First and foremost, I want to continue supporting all of you. I am so grateful for the role you all played in helping Changemaker Bootcamp come into being, and I want to continue supporting that if I can. I am especially thrilled to see the self-organized efforts. Here’s what I’d like to do:

    • I’d like to create a stronger backbone for the self-organized bootcamps. I’d like to propose that we have a self-organized gathering on the first Monday of every month from 4-6pm, alternating locations in SF and Oakland, starting with Monday, April 7 in Oakland.
    • I’d like to propose that we have an open signup for each slot, with me claiming the April slot. It would be first come, first serve, but with a statute of limitation on getting it organized. In other words, if you claimed a spot, but for some reason weren’t able to get it organized by at least two weeks in advance (for example), the spot would be released, and I would claim the spot. This would assure that monthly gatherings happened, and it would reduce the burden on everybody for holding this together. It’s not a bad thing if I get to organize one of these every once in a while, and if all of you are so motivated that I never got a spot, that’s cool too!
    • I’d like to use these gatherings as a basis for inviting a larger community of practice to participate. We should talk more about what this might look like, but I would aim for slow, strategic, organic growth. This will also mean opening up the water cooler to more people. More on this below.

    None of this would preclude self-organizing beyond these monthly gatherings. I’m trying to find ways to support what’s been emerging without taking control. I hope this proposal strikes that balance, and I’m anxious to hear what you all think.

    Second, I still plan on publishing both the concept papers I originally planned for my next pilot as well as workouts from previous bootcamps. Sharing actionable knowledge and building community around it is one of my strategic priorities for 2014, and so this needs to continue.

    In particular, I feel like we’ve gotten away a bit from the original notion of a workout. That’s totally okay. The fact that you all have been organizing and designing these sessions is a form of practice, and I love that it’s happening. The monthly format is also less conducive to the workout format. But I want to make sure I continue to evangelize and support the notion of a regular workout, and this is one way to do that.

    Third, I plan on rebranding the water cooler as Faster Than 20 as part of my hope to broaden participation. I have several ideas for what this might look like, but I’m interested in hearing what you all would like to see as well. Whatever happens, it will be intentional and strategic, and I’d like it if all of you were partners in that process.

    Finally, I think it’s important to note that Changemaker Bootcamp (in its current form) spawned a number of things. It’s indirectly responsible for the work I’m currently doing with the Garfield Foundation, and I’m replicating many elements of it in that work. It’s also strongly influenced many of my other projects as well. But the biggest impact it had on me was reminding me why I love this work. I loved working directly with all of you, who inspired me, taught me, and motivated me. I am so appreciative of this, and I hope I can continue to find ways to support all of you.

    Let me know what you think!

     
    • Eugene Chan 2:22 am on February 18, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Thanks for the update, @eekim. It’s good to be able to say “No” or “not yet” to things so kudos to you. Glad to hear all the good things happening.

      I like the idea of the monthly schedule

      I like the alternating of SF and Oakland

      I’m not sure about the two weeks or I’ll organize it dictum. It doesn’t seem like this is self-organized. Maybe a better way to set it up is to post a sequence or series of exercises and if an exercise hasn’t been determined within the time frame, the group does one of the posted exercises.

      I am conflicted about the opening up to a broader participation. I think I understand the motivation–especially if you don’t hold the regular bootcamps this year. However, the current bootcampers have a group history and shared understanding. Maybe you can do an A/B test to see how well it works to have new people in an exercise?

      Mostly, I’m confused by “gotten away a bit from the original notion of a workout”. I have a sense of what makes a good workout, but it would be good to have guidelines or at least a pattern from you to map against. I also don’t know if you are referring to the exercise during a session, or the structure and sequence of the bootcamps. Unclear.

      Lastly, you say that it is “okay”, but my guess is that it is not. Otherwise, you would not be proposing these changes. I’d like to know if you want truly self-organized bootcamps or if you want EEK produced, but not EEK directed workshops. That would help me know what makes sense or not to bring to the table.

      Either way works for me, but having the clarity is important.

      • Eugene Eric Kim 2:39 am on February 18, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Thanks for your quick feedback, @eugenechan! I’m going to respond to different points as separate comments, so that they can have their own threads. This one’s about the proposed statute of limitation.

        Self-organized does not mean leaderless. This is the point of my “networks and power” blog post I shared a while back. What I think when I hear “self-organized” flexible structures that encourage shared leadership.

        I demonstrated leadership by creating an initial space and inviting others to participate. You all have demonstrated leadership by continuing to staking claim to dates, organizing your own workouts, and inviting people to participate.

        We’ve all been leaving room and respecting each other’s leadership by letting people step up when they’re wanting to step up. It’s a dance, and so far, I’ve been impressed by how well we’ve been dancing. However, we’ve also stepped on each other’s toes on occasion β€” confusion over who was organizing the January bootcamp, for example, and then nailing a date for the February (now March) bootcamp. So how can we add lightweight structures to address those challenges while not getting in the way of people stepping up?

        That’s what I’m trying to do in my proposal. By proposing a standard date and location (both of which emerged from this group), I’m trying to address the scheduling challenge. This does not preclude any of us from scheduling different workouts.

        By proposing the statute of limitation, I’m also trying to address another challenge, which is that sometimes β€” even with the best of intentions β€” we can’t follow through with our original commitments. How do you respect this reality, but also leave room for others to step up?

        I’m offering to be the backup plan, as I thought it was a role that I could play more easily than anyone else. I’m not trying to make some kind of dictum, and I’m definitely open to other potential solutions.

        Does that help, Eugene? If it still doesn’t feel right, can you say more about what feels wrong about it?

        • Eugene Chan 3:34 am on February 18, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          Yes, I very much like the lightweight structures that aid in the execution of a bootcamp. I didn’t mean to suggest that self-organized is leaderless. But I do think that self-organized relies on emergent leadership–if you are in a backup role, I don’t see that as emergent, I see it as, well, a bootcamp. πŸ™‚

          • Natalie

            Natalie 6:35 pm on February 18, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

            Interesting. I see the backup plan as respecting emergent leadership while acknowledging the reality that the drop-outs will happen, and preventing the entire structure from potentially flaming (or — more likely — smoldering) out.

      • Eugene Eric Kim 2:43 am on February 18, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Regarding opening up to broader participation, I get that that feels dangerous, but I’ve also heard from many of you that part of the reason you wanted to get involved with bootcamp in the first place was to get more familiar with my network and to be part of a community of practice. I’m wanting to explore exactly that.

        I have some ideas for how to do it, but I’m totally open. An easy way to handle the face-to-face bootcamps would simply be to give conveners license to invite anyone they want, similar to how @brooking invited @rapetzel. We could try that for a while to see how that goes.

        The water cooler is a bit more challenging for a variety of reasons. It helps, though, that it’s already a publicly readable space. I’d love to hear what concerns people have, but also what people might be excited about, and then brainstorm together how we might invite more people in.

        • Eugene Chan 3:41 am on February 18, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          My concern wasn’t that it was dangerous. My concern is that we might lose clarity and cohesion.

          I’m not particularly bothered by it, but to keep with your bootcamp comparison-when I trained for the marathon, there were varying pace groups that went on the run. If you were new to marathon running, you don’t just join the 8:00/mile pace group or if you did the pace leader made sure that your capacity matched the rest of the group.

          Inviting @rapetzel isn’t a good example–as she already owns an honorary bootcamp shirt. She is already inculcated into the bootcamp ethos.

          _(Edit: incomplete sentences in first version. Dang.)_

          • Eugene Eric Kim 3:17 am on February 19, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

            It’s a fine point, and frankly, I’m not sure that everyone who’s participated in bootcamp so far should be in the same pace group. This is an ongoing exploration for me.

            But let’s assume that they do. How would you make sure that additional people we invite matched the pace of the rest of the group?

          • marie 11:18 pm on February 19, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

            I definitely understand the concern about losing cohesion as some of the topics are somewhat sensitive and challenging to work through in a group that might not have as much built up trust. However, as someone who is fairly new to this work, I really appreciate having a variety of levels of experience in the room. It has felt that each person is still able to take away a new learning regardless, but maybe that is my perspective as a beginner?

      • Eugene Eric Kim 2:53 am on February 18, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        Regarding getting away from my original notion of a workout, the original idea was to repeat exercises that would help us develop individual skills, similar to working out in a gym. Anytime you come into a space with the intention of practicing being and working effectively with others, you’re doing some of that. But that feels more like a scrimmage to me than a workout. The three self-organized workouts have felt more like scrimmages to me.

        I said it’s okay, because it is okay! Scrimmages are great! Moreover, the people designing the sessions are getting to practice things that we haven’t been able to practice well in my workouts β€” namely designing and facilitating real meetings β€” so I’m very excited about that. The self-organized workouts have also been much more content-oriented. People seem to be getting value from that, and that makes me happy too.

        I see no reason for people to stop doing what they’re doing. However, as part of the group β€” and I hope y’all consider me part of the group! β€” I’d still like to give people the opportunity to practice the more repetitive exercises I described above. Again, I don’t think the monthly workouts are as conducive to this, and if I’m only leading one every once in a while, it might not be very practical, but that would be my intention for sessions that I organize. Perhaps no one will want to show up to those!

        I would really love it if everybody incorporated at least one of the kinds of workouts I’m describing in their self-organized workouts β€” the two minute drill is an easy and quick one, for example β€” but I certainly wouldn’t try to impose it on anyone.

        Does that make sense?

        I want to be clear β€” and I hope I’ve been consistent in expressing and modeling this β€” I’m not trying to “take over” what’s been happening. What’s been emerging is already different from what I would have done… and I love it! Like I said, I just want to support it, but also help shape it. I definitely want to hear what other people think, and I am happy to retract proposals if folks don’t think they make sense.

        • Eugene Chan 3:48 am on February 18, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          Of course you are part of the group! I literally cannot imagine a bootcamp without you. You have given wings to this concept and it is cool thing to be part of.

          However, you have to define and determine for yourself what it means for you to be a participant in the group rather than a leader, or THE leader. That is the point where things get muddled for me.

          I don’t see this as “taking over’–I see it as “not letting go enough” Get the difference?

          I’m happy to see how bootcamps, both self organized and EEK-organized, evolve. I’m glad to be part of the network.

          I’ve said a lot so I’ll let others chime in.

          _(Edit: forgot an “out” in the second sentence.)_

          • Natalie

            Natalie 6:46 pm on February 18, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

            Yup — EEK is definitely part of the group, but I don’t really see him as not letting go enough. That said, I have little desire at this point to step up and get involved in planning and facilitating, so any involvement on his part supports my mouse-in-the-corner position. If I know EEK, though, he’s not about to stand in the way of anyone who wants to actively participate, and that’s why I’m not worried about the “letting go” part.

        • Dana 11:00 pm on February 19, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

          I’ve already expressed I thought the original bootcamp was too short so learning more workouts from Eugene would be great. And I think I need a refresher – what’s the two minute drill?

          I don’t mind people sharing content based things as long as I’m learning πŸ˜‰ but I am really interested in the workouts we could do to develop individual skills.

    • Dana 11:04 pm on February 19, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I like the idea of having it once a month, I like the idea of it having a stronger backbone- with EEK taking slots that aren’t filled (if it’s not too much of a burden), and I like the idea of broader participation – if there’s a shared understanding of what we are trying to accomplish/do.

    • Brooking

      Brooking 1:21 am on February 22, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I feel great all about all of what EEK proposed in his original post here, including the 2 week clause (thoug maybe 1 week feels better to others/addresses some concerns?) & also happy to open it up as a practice group, & have marked my calendar for many months to come to save the date! I’m a member of Hub Oakland and we can use space there sometimes for Oakland events (not free though…)

  • Eugene Eric Kim 11:28 pm on February 14, 2014 Permalink |  

    My friend, Stowe Boyd, interviewed me for his Socialogy blog series today. It’s a bit geeky on the organizational design front, but I discuss some themes that are a big part of bootcamp.

    http://stoweboyd.com/post/76647861617/socialogy-an-interview-with-eugene-kim

     
  • Eugene Eric Kim 9:16 pm on February 13, 2014 Permalink |  

    I wrote about our very own @renee on my blog today! She was one of the instigators of a collaborative visioning process among a bunch of civic engagement funders facilitated by @rapetzel. I got some good video of both Renee and Rebecca, along with their colleague Mary Tobin. Enjoy!

    http://fasterthan20.com/2014/02/civic-engagement-funders-aligning-for-impact/

     
  • Eugene Eric Kim 12:50 am on February 13, 2014 Permalink |  

    Folks, as I mentioned earlier in the comments, I’m facilitating a big meeting on February 27-28 in Oakland. I’m looking for someone to help support me as an associate at the meeting. This will include note-taking, some knowledge and logistical support, and also being a second pair of eyes and ears. We had someone originally lined up for the meeting, but because of some scheduling snafus, we need to find someone else.

    I know that all of you have jobs, but would any of you be interested? We’d pay you for your time, and you’d be working closely with me over those two days. You’d get a chance to see firsthand how I execute a lot of the things we practice at bootcamp in a real-life setting.

    Let me know if you’re interested, or let me know if you know someone who might be. Many thanks!

     
    • Eugene Eric Kim 12:54 am on February 13, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Okay, scrap that. Just as I pressed post, I got an email: our original person managed to shift her schedule around, and we’re all set to go.

      So I’m going to reframe my request: If any of you would ever be interested in getting some real-life opportunities to practice by supporting me or others in these kinds of engagements, let me know. Please also let me know if you know of others who might be interested (as they may also be good bootcamp candidates).

      Thanks!

  • Eugene Eric Kim 3:48 pm on January 24, 2014 Permalink |  

    Hope you all have been having a great week! I know that @marie and @eugenechan are plotting the next bootcamp, and I’m looking forward to seeing what they come up with!

    Two quick announcements. First, I’m tentatively planning the next bootcamp to start the week of March 10. It will be eight weeks this time, and I’ll be making some additional tweaks as always. If I have enough interest, I want to do two simultaneous bootcamps: one in SF, one in Oakland. Let me know if you’d be interested in participating, and please start thinking about others who might be interested as well.

    Second, I recently finished a draft paper that outlines my basic philosophy and frameworks around group development, strategy, and culture work. If any of you are interested in reviewing, please let me know, as I’d love your feedback! Bonus: It’s short, and there are pictures!

    I’m not sure yet whether it will be one of the concept papers I “assign” for the next bootcamp, but it will be made publicly available on the Faster Than 20 website regardless. It will also be released in the public domain (you heard that right), and so you’ll be able to do absolutely anything you want with it without restriction: share, reuse, rebrand, sell, etc.

     
    • Natalie

      Natalie 4:10 pm on January 24, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Short? With pictures? I’ll bite.

    • Brooking

      Brooking 3:29 am on January 27, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I’m interested!

    • Eugene Eric Kim 3:40 pm on January 27, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Thank you both! Draft sent. Sadly, it’s starting to grow a bit, but I’ll do my best to rein it in. Looking forward to your feedback, and if others are interested, there’s still time.

    • Jessica 1:54 am on February 1, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I’m game too! Please send me a draft.

      And @marie / @eugenechan and other bootcampers, ditto on the missing everyone and hoping to get together somepoint in February.

      Jess

  • Eugene Eric Kim 4:17 pm on January 15, 2014 Permalink |  

    Many thanks to @brooking and @rapetzel for a wonderful bootcamp yesterday! Brooking requested feedback on both content and process. I’m going to do a nit picky process debrief later this week to give you all a sense of how I use my debrief template and what I’m seeing when I’m wearing my process hat. But, I wanted to offer some quick feedback here:

    • I liked the session overall β€” 7/10 for me. For me, 6 is minimum satisfaction, 7 is good. Once you start getting into 8s and above, you’re taking it to another level. For an informal, two-hour session where you’re grappling with a rather complex topic, if you’re hitting a 7, you’re doing pretty well. I’d like you all to be hitting 6s and 7s consistently. If you’re hitting 8s consistently, you can take over bootcamp, and I’ll just participate! πŸ™‚
    • Sometimes, your ability to hit 8 or above has nothing to do with your facilitation abilities. In yesterday’s case, the space we were in was challenging. (I’ve been super appreciative about people’s generosity about providing space β€” thank you @eugenechan! And, none of our spaces have been optimal for what we’re doing, including space that I’ve paid for. I really need to find a good, ongoing space for us.) That said, the way you guys configured the space showed a lot of skill. Rollaway whiteboard β€” brilliant, and something I’m going to steal. Post-Its for the synthesis β€” excellent. Having all of us on the same side of the table β€” excellent.
    • I really appreciated the level of conversation. You guys picked a hard topic and a hard framing. I didn’t say anything before, but I was skeptical about how deep we would be able to get. However, we were able to develop some shared understanding of “high-performance networks” without getting totally sidetracked by it, and we were able to get into some useful strategic and tactical discussions. Personally, I feel inspired to write a blog post about some of the things we discussed. I particularly liked everyone’s contributions. I think the skill and number of participants really contributed to the success of the bootcamp. I would have been interested to have seen how this would have turned out (and how Brooking and Rebecca would have handled it) if we had two or more additional people.
    • I feel like we hit most of Brooking and Rebecca’s goals. I think we missed on, “Participants gain insights on design thinking techniques,” although I also question the framing of the goal. Is “design thinking” being used here as a catch-all for the kind of tactical techniques you might use in any group process? The two that I can’t answer and that I’m curious about are: Did we hit Brooking’s goal around timeliness (we can have a long conversation about this), and were Brooking and Rebecca surprised by what they learned?
    • From a workout perspective, there were several things I appreciated. First and foremost, the act of designing and facilitating any of these is practice, so I’m very glad that this continues to happen, and I’m looking forward to other bootcampers designing and facilitating future sessions. Second, even though I didn’t like framing the opening question around “high-performance networks” (although I agreed with the decision), the overall framing question was strong in that you started with personal experience as opposed to abstraction. (This is one of the lessons from the person-on-the-street workout.) Third, I liked the pairs exercise, and I especially appreciated Brooking’s framing β€” “We’re going to be exercising our listening and synthesis muscles.” That felt very much in the spirit of bootcamp. I’m always amazed by how much of a difference moving into pairs can make. It requires skill to make that move with such a small group, but group physics doesn’t lie.
    • From a bootcamp perspective, I would have rather seen less up-front talk about Health eHeart. However, I’m also conscious of @eugenechan‘s feedback (he liked the groundedness of starting with a real project). This was essentially a peer consultation, and from a community of practice perspective, peer consultations are wonderful. I think we could have reached a middle ground, but I’ll reserve that feedback for my comprehensive debrief.

    What did others think? I focus a lot on process above, so I’d love to hear what people thought about the content. What did you learn? What muscles do you feel like you exercised?

     
    • Brooking

      Brooking 9:33 pm on January 15, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Thanks SO MUCH for this feedback EEK – I love that for you this is the “short” version πŸ˜‰ I’ll be posting photos & some synthesizing thoughts this evening or tomorrow… thanks again everyone for participating!!!

    • Jessica 7:00 pm on January 16, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Not sure you got this from our conversation… It may be a really useful PRE-READ / HOMEWORK to have participants reflect on some of the topics we discussed… What does a network mean to them… OR What are they hoping to achieve (in a picture)… I once had participants respond to a question: “what is the impact of art on quality of life?” on a posterous blog with pictures prior to getting together, and it was a great kickoff.

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