maia_bob: OTW Logo with text "OTW Board 2013 (wtfpolarbear)" (OTW Board WTF)
584 emails this week of which 459 are labeled OTW - !General and 119 are labeled OTW – Board. My calendar says ~11 hour week.*updates tracking spreadsheet*

That OTW - !General spike is pure talk about Meta which should suprise no one. My calendar has entries on it that just read ALL THE EMAILS. It also has knitting and TV which is my current emotional survival process.

Looking back, if we were to do this again I would be arguing very strongly for a decision, followed by some serious talking with affected committee leads, which would hopefully make a plan going forward (like magic!). Also I think we need a someone like a project manager to coordinate the whole thing... we don't have roving all-OTW project managers *wistful* ... I haven't talked about this with anyone yet so this very much falls into the category of internal Maia rambles.

The Board has also approved something which I can't talk about yet but that make me happy - more news when I can talk about it.

I've been thinking about how to be better at a lot of things recently, talking to people, saying what I think and feel, working out what I want so I can tell people. Sometimes that's the hardest bit. I got reminded of Getting to Yes (PDF summary) which I have not read (the book, I've read the summary) but which came up in an MBA unit I did in 2010. I think the stuff about negotiating from issues not positions is pretty useful, we get a lot more out of negotiating when we know what worries the other person, what they really need.

[personal profile] facetofcathy also pointed out this cool tool, which gives you a reabability score on your writing. I tried to write to a score of 70 and this post has a score of 71.3 - how is that working for people? Am I readable? Understandable?
maia_bob: OTW Logo with text "OTW Board 2013 (wtfpolarbear)" (OTW Board WTF)
454 emails this week of which 303 are labeled OTW - !General and 134 are labeled OTW – Board. The proportion of emails to IM chats is moving towards more chats. My calendar says ~15 hour week. I didn’t make it to a single official committee meeting which kind of blows my mind because it feels like this whole week has been All-OTW, all the time. *reads transcripts*

One of things I couldn’t talk about last week (Six weeks so far…) and the week before (Five weeks so far…) was Meta and you're lucky I only joined the board recently or I would have been not talking about it for over six months. if you're interested, my personal decision making process went a lot like this:
AO3 Meta according to Maia v2

I would like to emphasise that this is a Board decision, and while AD&T, Support and Comms are receiving the feedback, they are not the instigators. Keep communicating, this is important. Be kind, this is important too.

I am also open to continuing discussing it, this is an invitation to comment or PM me if you want to talk about it with me.

ETA: Also! HUGE thank you to J. who got up when I called him at 1:35am his time because the AO3 was down for logged out users. THANK YOU!
maia_bob: Me posing on a pink canon (Default)
494 emails this week (not counting the ones I read and delete immediately) of which 331 are labeled OTW - !General and 133 are labeled OTW – Board. My calendar says ~15 hour week which is partly due to the stuff I did being a bit emotionally draining so I took breaks where I didn’t do OTW stuff at all.

The Board meeting was the 2pm one (luxury!) and I chaired. The Open session was mostly committee updates and some discussion about something I can’t talk about outside OTW yet, but involved clarifying something the Board wants done (as a result the Board will now be more clear about expectations in this situation). The Closed part was partly about said clarifying and about some other stuff we need to decide on, schedule and communicate. We cut the meeting a little short as ppl were very tired and some life crisis stuff was happening as well :(

I have now fully read the Still Willing to Serve report and the Strategic Planning Tag Wranglers report which are very informative and talk a lot about communication needs. I am still digesting a lot of this but it’s very useful and gives me a broader understanding of some OTW issues.

I did yet another personality test! The Riso-Hudson Enneagram which gave me a 3-way tie between Personality Type ONE: The Reformer, Personality Type TWO: The Helper and Personality Type EIGHT: The Challenger (they recommend I wait a week and do it again to see if I can narrow it down a bit).

Also this: The epic love story of fanlore_news and podfic
maia_bob: Me posing on a pink canon (Default)
422 emails passed through my account this week, of which 320 were tagged OTW – !General and 126 were tagged OTW – Board. My calendar says 20 hours spent doing Org stuff this week – emails, meetings, chats, reading. I am going to pretend it is accurate because it makes me feel better about my time management skills and my weekend :p

The Board meeting was at 4am, I slept then read the transcript instead. This also happened for AD&T and DevMem *waves from the past*. I went to 1, count ‘em ONE actual meeting which was Wiki, where I got to see the team in action - all planning-ey and focused.

My Manifesto
went up on the OTW blogs, and a correction has been made for which I owe an apology to everyone who worked hard to form the Tag Wrangling Committee.
  • I would very much like to convey my gratitude that people felt comfortable enough to correct me, that I in no way intended to diminish or obscure the vast amount of work done by these people, and that I apologise for any hurt feelings and will try to be more considerate in future.
Updatey stuff in more detail
  • Board: I’m reading Still Willing to Serve results compiled by the fabulous VolCom; we discussed some tools, accounts and spending approved; there was some ferocious and heartfelt discussion about stuff I cannot talk about at present; some procedural stuff designed to make things flow better; a volunteer to write me drabble(s) based on the terrible fact that my name is occasionally spell-checked to Mafia Bubonic; and a lot of emails.
  • AD&T is deep in deploy planning (as always) but also planning an ‘interlude’ in May(ish) which would involve dedicated cross-committee communication and long term planning as well as my favourite goal: clean up some organizational cruft and infuse everything with the green-apple smell of sunshine and spring and rainbows.
  • DevMem is planning too, as is Wiki but I’m not sure how much of that is shareable so I shall err on the side of discretion for now.

Other stuff included trying to find a personality / communication style tool I was introduced to some years ago and failing but finding something close enough (I am totally Blue and would rank them Blue - Orange - Green – Gold). I also revisited Hofstede’s Cultural Dimensions – you can compare your country to another country!

Sometimes I hit communication problems and I’m thinking having a process where we can stop, tell people what we need, ask what they need, and THEN try to work through issues might make some things better. Plus I want people to get more into the habit of talking about how they feel, and how they are experiencing our meetings / chats / processes so we can spend less time on misunderstandings and more time on pictures of kittens and Org stuff.
maia_bob: Me posing on a pink canon (Default)
282 emails passed through my account this week, of which 51 were tagged “OTW - Board”

I’ve been away for most of the week after driving across Australia (3,282km) and flying back which took me 5 days all up.

Roadtrip over. Home OMG.

I attended no meetings and I have SO MUCH reading to do right now - all the transcripts, all the referred to docs and reports. I did finish my manifesto and pass it on to Board and Comms and my 'notes to self of stuff to track' is now a multi-page spreadsheet plus a mindmap I will never show anyone for fear of being judged (and, you know, indiscreet).
maia_bob: Me posing on a pink canon (Default)
Kristen, fellow boardmember and chair of Devmem and I got together to agree on our Board Liaison Agreement. This was pretty easy, we stole Finance’s from last year and tweaked it to meet our needs. Mostly this is about who does what, when and how we communicate, which I can see being very useful as starting point to this liaising gig.

We've talked goals for the year and how to go about making them achievable and this is a subject of great interest to us! Those goals will further develop as DevMem works on them. they are not unusual goals, they have to do with good planning, and communication and being able to pass things on over time. I like these kinds of goals :)

I also clearly haven't donated recently enough because I've become aware that one of the donation premiums is a kudos water bottle which I am now eying lovingly from afar *logs into PayPal*.
OTw Kudos Waterbottle


maia_bob: OTW Logo with text "OTW Board 2013 (wtfpolarbear)" (OTW Board WTF)
390 emails passed through my account this week, of which 108 were tagged “OTW - Board” and I spent maybe 5 hours of meetings plus some chatting... my calendar says it was a 10-15 hour week.

Board meeting was at 2pm on Sunday. V. civilised, many thanks to ppl who stayed up late into their night for me. *grins*

We did quick committee updates in the Cross-Committee meeting room which kind of summarises to ‘people! people are doing stuff!” then retired to Board to talk about fun things like budgets, communication and items to keep an eye on. We had a passionate discussion about something I can’t talk about yet (I’m going to be saying that a lot, aren’t I) and then I found more documents I should get familiar with. Yay Survey!

I’m writing a ‘get you know you’ Q&A and wrestling with how to talk about how I feel about Transparency and Diversity... I mean I know how I feel but getting that into words is proving difficult. I'll keep poking it.

This made me sad: An uncertain future for one of fandom's largest organizations. As much as I appreciate size being important it's a bit low on accuracy (to be fair, some corrections have been posted) and a bit high on hype. I'm also sad they didn't mention Francesca's title as Wolf Visiting Professor of Television Studies because that cannot be said too many times. Wolf Professor!

Our future is not uncertain, our future is going to be excellent.

Festivids \o/
maia_bob: Me posing on a pink canon (Default)
maia_bob: OTW Logo with text "OTW Board 2013 (wtfpolarbear)" (OTW Board WTF)
Mmmm 4am

More email traffic, liaisons 95% done and 100% done by end of meeting. I am the new liaison for
  • Accessibility, Design & Technology (AD&T) - I am also a staffer so this will be both the easiest in terms of knowledge and the hardest in terms of balancing relationships
  • Development & Membership - need to get in touch and start dialogue
  • Wiki - Tiyire (chair) contacted me immediately and we're catching up over what we can achieve together and what that might look like
Board meeting started in Cross-Committee room doing a brief update on our liaisoning (shush, it's a word now) then moved to Board to talk about 'stuff.' I wish it was the kind of stuff I could ramble about but it's people and feelings stuff so I shall just say that the board cares a lot and works hard to treat people and feelings like important things.

Sanders gave a quick $ update, I requested a bouncy castle. We did quietly nudge the ByLaws on the website to an updated state with the kind help of Communications and Web Masters. Yay Kristen! We talked about Liaison Agreements for Committees (we think they are good things - template from last year in use) and the Board Role (we think it should be clearly defined)

We have agreed on three times for Board meetings which we will rotate between - one is even during daylight hours in Australia \o/
maia_bob: OTW Logo with text "Rabid Cyborg Koalas... pretty ones" (Koalas)
First meeting of the year! 1am my time, and our new chair's as well as they were in Singapore.

We'll get a bit more formal and structured as the year progresses, this was mostly updates and planning.
  • Server move: we have moved to the new database server and are working on the application servers (we being Systems, or James to be specific)
  • January Deploy: on schedule assuming we don't run into major issues during testing
  • Tester numbers: low - we've plans to address this (so you know, come volunteer) but need to go easy on testing team as this takes time
  • API: we need one (Mobile App, Open Doors), earliest would be April (see next point)
  • Future deploys: schedule to be fiercely discussed over the next week
  • Open Doors is a priority, communication to start at once.
Finished at 3:20 so I figured I'd stay up for Board at 4 am.
maia_bob: OTW Logo with text "OTW Board 2013 (wtfpolarbear)" (OTW Board WTF)
Technically I think we're on some sort of hiatus which is a fantastic idea and I have devoted some of the past week to holiday type activities. Happy New Year BTW :)

There has been Board-ish traffic in email form, mostly to do with finalising chairs / committee liaisons and last minute additions to committees (this feels very familiar but from the other side - usually I was madly proposing new ppl for my committee). We also approved a minor budget item - exciting!

I have been networking, partly to get to know people I'll be working with *waves to AD&T, Open Doors and Comms* and I have a lot more chatting to go :) If you think I should be talking to you and I haven't gotten around to it yet do please nudge me, I'm shamelessly taking advantage of people when they turn up near me so it's not a very scientific process.

Right now we're talking about what went well in the past years, what didn't go so well, how we might look to improve things, how *I* might help contribute to that and I say the word 'strategic plan' suspiciously often... well it feels like a single word ;p

Two very specific topics I could chase up straight away is AO3 backups (ETA we're looking to store offsite as well as locally to reduce risk of catastrophic loss but....$ so let's try and get it as right as possible We do have offsite backups in our second datacenter, we are discussing our data retention policy with regards to long term storage and shipping the backups off to Amazon Glacier as a tertiary location.) and AO3 emails vanishing as spam (do we continue to host/manage ourselves or do we outsource?). We're lucky to know such excellent people as [staff profile] denise and [personal profile] skud who are willing to share what they know and share their time - thank you!
maia_bob: OTW Logo with text "OTW Board 2013 (wtfpolarbear)" (OTW Board WTF)
Hello and welcome to my legal-name journal created to express my enthusiasm for all things boardy.

The official announcement is on the Transformativeworks website and I offer my thanks to Francesca and Naomi (who are stepping down) for the many hours they have devoted to both creating the OTW and keeping its many balls in the air.

If you're interested in my past involvement in the OTW then the arty bit is on the AO3, and my blogging as an OTW volunteer on my more personal journal.

In short: I'm a Western Australian, I'm in IT and have been for many years, I've (I like to think successfully) chaired an OTW committee before, and I think things like organisational culture, communication and succession planning are important.

At present I've attended one Board meeting at the exciting time of 4am to do basic induction-ish type things and to start building relationships with the other board members. While I'm familiar with many of the people on the board I've not had the fortune to work closely with them before. I'll be acting as liaison for a couple of committees and generally participating in (yet to be identified) board activities.

The most exciting thing that's happened so far was explaining the OTW, the AO3 and Transformative Works to my manager at work (we declare things like other employment and potential conflicts of interest) which led to a conversation about 50 Shades of Grey and me using the word porn rather more than usual in a work environment. *grins*

My intention is to be as open and communicative as possible and this DW has been created to reflect this. I'm leaving anon commenting on and ask only that if you want a reply from me, you sign your comment (even if it's with an "X") so I can keep track of who I'm talking to. If commenting is not your thing, feel free to email me at maia dot bobrowicz at gmail.

I'm looking forward to the 2013 term and I hope we can do good things and have some fun along the way.

Cheers, Maia
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