Call for Volunteers: Diversity Outreach Speaker Training

Have you ever had trouble getting women to speak at your events? Us too.

Did you know that there’s a solution this? There’s no one perfect solution, but there is a speaker training workshop written by and for female members of the WordPress community. (https://make.wordpress.org/training/handbook/speaker-training/) It busts through women’s typical objections, like “What would I talk about?” and “I don’t know enough about … to give a talk on it.” The training runs through exercises (and public speaking practise opportunities) for finding a topic, crafting good pitches, bios, and outlines, and covers tips to becoming a better speaker.

This workshop has been tested and proven to increase the number of women speakers at meetups and WordCamps in Vancouver, Seattle, and Montreal.

 

Where do you come in?

We’d like to form a group of passionate folk to run and promote this fantastic workshop. We want everyone to know that this resource exists, and that anyone can pick it up and run it. It’s been designed so that the facilitators don’t need expertise; they don’t even need to be experienced public presenters themselves. The course is all written out in a script that trainers can just read the material aloud, along with accompanying workbooks (coming soon).

 

Interested in joining this Diversity Outreach Speaker Training working group? Together we will: (each item is optional)

  1. Train you to run the workshop. (The first time, you will be a workshop participant in a live online version. There may be possibilities to receive the training in person, such as at WordCamp US 2017 on Contributor Day).
  2. Receive and then, in turn, provide ongoing support and mentorship to run the workshop.
  3. Help you train others to run the workshop. We want many trainers worldwide in a self-perpetuating system that is continuously growing.
  4. Promote the workshop globally and help create a promotion plan.
  5. Be part of a team that decides how the workshop should change over time.
  6. Discuss ongoing speaker diversity issues and how we can solve them. We will be focusing more on solutions than on just talking about problems.

Currently this effort is being mostly lead by myself, but the goal is to recruit a group to take long-term leadership in achieving the above goals. I’m available to spend about 6 months training folks and then hope to pass this on, though that is flexible. Even after that time, I will always be available to answer questions and provide support.

 

Estimated time commitment:

  • A bi-weekly group chat: 30 minutes every 2 weeks
  • A live training: 1.5 hours + 1 hour of group chats over the course of a couple of weeks + 0.5 hour wrap-up
  • Prepare and run the workshop: Running the whole workshop takes 4 hours, but you can run just a module for 1 hour. Expect about 2 hours prep time the first time.

 

If you’d like to take part in this working group please comment on this post. I will then reach out to interested folks, to find a good time for biweekly meetings. Other people can join in any time after that as well. If you have questions, please also feel free to comment on the post. I look forward to working with you and together creating something wonderful!

Discussion: replacing volunteer equipment

Hi Community Team!

This year, we’ve received two questions from two different WordCamps about the following, and I’d like to find out what the team thinks we should do these kind of cases:

  • Case 1: One of the co-organizers of WordCamp X, in charge of social media and the official photographer of the WordCamp, got the lens of his camera broken when an attendee, by accident, pushed him when he was taking photos the day of the event. He hasn’t asked for anything, but the organizing team is asking if they can pay the 140 USD of the repair of the len as they had 500 USD of surplus after the WordCamp.
  • Case 2: One volunteer of WordCamp Y, lent his laptop for the registration table for the first day of the event. At some point, the laptop was stolen and the organizing team reached out to us asking us if they could pay for a new laptop for the volunteer as they feel this person lost his working tool when helping the community. We’re waiting to receive an email with a written summary of what happened and how much a similar machine would cost. They didn’t have a surplus in this case.

And these are my questions for a discussion:
a) Do we want to have a budget for replacing volunteer-owned equipment?
b) If affirmative, how to manage that budget in order to be sustainable?
c) How could we avoid or minimize fraud in these cases?

Thanks very much for your thoughts, please leave your comments!

Two working group leadership opportunities

We have some new opportunities to take a leadership role on the global community team, recruiting volunteers to work on two different projects that we could take on if there is enough interest. 🙂

CoC Training Project

We have a Code of Conduct for all WordPress community events, but do we equip all our organizers with the knowledge and skills they need to identify and address problem behavior? (The answer is no, we don’t — but we’d sure like to!)

The scope of the project is to design and execute Code of Conduct training course for WordPress community event organizers. When the organizer has completed the training, they should understand (at a minimum):

  • why our events have a code of conduct
  • what kind of behavior our code of conduct addresses
  • how to respond to code of conduct reports

Because we can’t predict whether we’ll always have the staffing to support synchronous, human-to-human training, this training will make the greatest impact if it’s available to be taken autonomously, rather like the WordCamp organizer self-training course we have now. The course doesn’t have to be original, but will probably be most effective if it’s tailored to the needs and interests of our community. It would be great if this working group included people familiar with curriculum design, code of conduct reports and enforcement, and/or diversity and inclusion work.

This idea was suggested on the Code of Conduct Response Questions discussion post, and multiple people agreed it was a good idea that they might be interested in working on. 🙂 (cc: @lucasartoni @gwendydd @mrwweb @trisha_cornelius)

WordCamp Fundraising Research

Some WordCamps reach their fundraising goals with ease, and some really struggle. Are they all doing the same thing with wildly different results (surely not)? Is it always “who you know,” or are there practices we can add to our handbooks to help sponsor wranglers all over the world?

The scope of this project is to research the methods and practices of organizing teams that have been successful in their fundraising and then report back to the global community team with the results. The team may decide to try to send a survey out to WordCamp organizers, or might decide that interviews would be a more effective way to gather data. Volunteers with experience in successful WordCamp fundraising would be a big asset to this working group. We’ll be reporting which camps ran surpluses and deficits at the end of this year, so the group will be able to target their research.

Next steps

I’d love to identify a working group lead on both projects (interest permitting) by November 30. The work as a working group lead will include recruiting volunteers, scheduling and attending periodic meetings, posting reports on the team blog, and of course helping the group stay on track and achieve the goals of the project. Both of these projects involve temporary working groups, so you’re not signing up for a “forever” commitment. 🙂 Groups can also share the work and responsibilities in any way they find effective.

If you are interested in leading either of these efforts, or in participating in one of these working groups, please leave a comment on this thread! If you have questions, ask away.

Weekly Updates

Hello to all our Deputies, WordCamp organizers, Meetup wranglers, and WordPress Community builders! You were probably hard at work this weekend. Tell us what you got accomplished in our #weekly-update!

Have you run into a roadblock with the stuff you’re working on? Head over to #community-events or #community-team in Slack and ask for help!

Proposal: WordCamp Central Twitter Strategy and Tactics

On October 11, I accidentally retweeted a @WordCamp tweet about WordCamp US tickets still available. I only verified the link later (bad, bad Birgit) to find out this was about WordCamp US 2016. (No one on Twitter sees you blush unless you post a selfie.) You can just undo the Retweet. Of course, I shared this bit in the #community-team channel on Slack. Turns out the volunteer who managed the Twitter account left, and everyone else was focused on something else. Andrea Middleton put out a call for volunteers to take over the Twitter account.  I felt encouraged to raise my hand, and so did Laura Byrne Cristiano, Marketing Organizer of WordCamp US and Emanuel Blagonic, Co-organizer WordCamp Europe.

Soon after that, we started a group discussion and came up with the cornerstones of a possible Twitter policy and process. This post is a summary of our discussion on this Google Document.  We now need input from WordCamp organizers and attendees, on how a Central WordCamp Twitter account can be used to give the most helpful support to local and regional WordCamps. We identified goals, target audiences, ideas for tweets and retweets.

The strategy and tactics are not yet completely fleshed out. We also discussed tools and a few examples.

We’d like your comment, thoughts, and concerns on this post by November 30th.

With your comments, we can get a group together on Contributor Day at WordCamp US (Dec 3 – 9:00 – 5 pm)  to work the first draft of policy & process. We will post our progress here for more comment. Also, we will be looking for more volunteers to participate, and flesh out the dos and don’ts of a WordCamp Central Twitter policy. If all goes well, we will start testing in January and February of 2018, then adjust and iterate according to the feedback.

Read on to review the discussion summary!

WordCamp US 2017 Contributor Day

WordCamp US Contributor Day is on December 3! If you plan to attend and contribute to the global community team that day, there are a few ways you can get involved (excitement!):

  1. Suggest projects that the team can work on! (Bonus points for suggestions of projects that can be completed in 4 hours by a group of folks with varying degrees of experience on our team. (Extra-shiny-rainbow-unicorn bonus points for suggestions of helpful things that brand-new contributors can do.)) We don’t make decisions on things without discussing them here on the team blog, so suggestions of “decide what we’re going to do about swag” won’t be helpful. If you’re looking for examples, you could review some Contributor Day posts from the past: 1, 2.
  2. Volunteer to work on a particular project, once we decide on them.
  3. Volunteer to lead a project group! This might include giving a meetup orientation to a group of organizer applicants, teaching new deputies how to vet applications, and lots of other things, depending on what the group decides we should focus on for that day.
  4. Volunteer to help organize WCUS Contributor Day! This job involves helping to curate the list of projects we’ll be working on, recruiting folks to help direct project groups on the day of the event, and helping contributors find the project group where they’ll be the most comfortable/helpful, on the day of the event.

Please comment on this post if you have project suggestions or would like to volunteer in any of the ways listed above! Hope to see you there!

Discussion: Micro-regional WordCamps

After an extensive community discussion involving community members from all over the world, we put together some guidelines for the situations where regional WordCamps will be approved. These guidelines have been accepted and are the working basis for any regional WordCamp application that we receive. Recently, however, we have received applications for two WordCamps that we would call “micro-regional” as they comprise more than one city/town, but they are all in very close proximity to each other. There are special circumstances here that make these applications different to the average regional WordCamp, which is what we would like to discuss here.

What do the applications entail?

As we have two separate applications here, I’m going to explain the requests in a single instance using cities named Alpha, Beta and Gamma.

The WordCamp application is for WordCamp Beta, even though Beta does not have its own meetup group. The organisers of the WordCamp will come from the Alpha and Gamma communities, as all three cities are within 30 minutes of each other. In some cases, the Alpha community has held meetup events in Beta as well as Gamma, as these cities are so close together that travelling between them is fairly trivial. Beta was chosen for the WordCamp location as it is more central and also less costly than Alpha and Gamma.

Why do we need to discuss this?

A long-standing rule for all WordCamps is that we only ever host a WordCamp in a city that has an active and healthy meetup group. This is to ensure that the WordCamp has the support and longevity that it needs to keep its momentum going. The applications that we’re looking at here are both for WordCamps to be hosted in cities that do not have their own active meetup groups. On the other hand, they are deeply connected to their neighbouring cities that do have meetup groups, not just by proximity, but also by the fact that they have shared event locations (and even event organisers) in the past.

So, what do you think? Is the concern of the host city not having its own meetup group mitigated by the fact that the surrounding groups are so connected to them? We’d love to get some opinions on this from the community and deputies, so please weigh in with your thoughts in the comments.

As both of these camps need to get going with their pre-planning, I’m going to set the deadline for concluding this discussion at next week Friday (17 November) at 10:00 UTC. At that point I’ll summarise the discussion and we can decide on the way forward.

#deputies, #feedback

Community Team Chat Agenda | Thursday, 16 November 2017

Hey Team!

Our bi-monthly Community Team chat is happening this Thursday, 16 November 2017. Meeting times are 08:00 UTC and 20:00 UTC in #community-team on Slack – we use the same agenda for both meetings in order to include all time zones.

Agenda

  1. Deputy check-in:
    What have you been doing and how is it going?
  2. Discussion: Micro-regional WordCamps
    This is an open discussion with the community that will close on Friday, so let’s get some thoughts in the comments there to help it along.
  3. P2 posts needing review/feedback:

Please add any additional items to this agenda by commenting on this post as needed.

#meeting #agenda

Weekly Updates

Hello to all our Deputies, WordCamp organizers, Meetup wranglers, and WordPress Community builders! You were probably hard at work this weekend. Tell us what you got accomplished in our #weekly-update!

Have you run into a roadblock with the stuff you’re working on? Head over to #community-events or #community-team in Slack and ask for help!

Let’s create case studies of the WordCamp regulation.

Hi! Community team!
I proposed before “I will post a WordCamp regulation OK / NG case study on handbook.”

WordCamp regulation OK/NG case study to handbook

After some discussions in the comments and in the Slack, we move on to the next stage.

Please share your experience in consulting solving problems and troubles regarding the regulation by commenting this post including following points;

  • Description of the case.
  • OK/NG, if any judge made, and the reason you made that decision.
  • Sharing cases without clear judgements are also welcome. I’ll bring them to the team discussion.

Example

  • On the speaker candidate’s website, the organization team found links to a theme shop that does not follow 100% GPL.
  • We asked the speaker to remove the link, and the speaker removed the link.
  • We welcomed him as a speaker.

I will put it in a Google spreadsheet.
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1bkpvieQA4NIh9AFUxX-oZe_S7gKMdDvwewwUdERx2N0/edit?usp=sharing

The deadline is November 3.

Thanks.