[draft] Governance overhaul / roles to recruit for

Continuing the discussion from What skill sets are short?:

I started drafting notes about what the complete set of roles looks like for a really successful team and community. We have a semi-functioning structure already but it’s not adequate and has lots of issues.

I’m making this post a wiki to allow for collaborative updating (along with potential discussion) to get closer to the full organization we need.

I hope the notes below can get updated until we’re happy with a good foundational restarting point. We can then iterate from there. We can also mark what roles are unfilled and underfilled once the overall structure is settled (and note: we should identify all the roles we know we’d like even if we can manage without them — that way we have the most clarity about ways to fit in new volunteers).

Please edit or reply in a new comment with any thoughts about what should be adjusted or added…

(Potential) Roles / circles (updated and/or new)

General Manager

Board of Directors

primary initial goal: seeing through the drafting and acceptance of initial Bylaws in conjunction with legal team; after that, Board will be elected per the Bylaws.

Traits desired:

  • FLO knowledge/sensitivity
  • co-op, democracy, equity political values, insights
  • experience in advising, serving on Boards
  • software/web development
  • sensitivity, experience regarding distributed global team and volunteers
  • fundraising experience
  • diversity among Board members
  • accountabilities:
    • monthly meetings
    • reading relevant email and forum updates
    • availability for some between-meeting advising


including accounting, tax filing, and finance in general


Co-op developer

Lead our specific co-op implementation and the running of the co-op democratically etc., engagement with general membership, newsletter?

Human Resources / assistant to General Manager etc.

Helping support the other team members, listen to concerns, provide coaching and support, facilitate good communication, regular 1-on-1check-ins, whatever can be done to encourage others and help everyone succeed. Know who’s who in the team etc. Onboarding of newcomers.

Facilitator / mods

Neutral support for the community in the forum and elsewhere, someone actively willing to flag, to contact people with grace about concerns, help run meetings

Project manager

prioritizing tasks, backlog grooming, tracking milestones, coordinating related tasks

Development (building our product)

  • CTO / technical lead — architecture, tech stack, managing code contributors etc.
  • Programmers
    • Frontend protyping, implementation (html/sass/js)
    • Backend (Haskell — and/or potentially others if discussed and agreed)
  • Testers / Reviewers

Organizational management / Operations

Maintaining working systems and business etc.

  • sysadmin (including compliance, security etc)


covers acquisition/marketing and support/recruiting/community…

  • Blog editor / publicist (solicit posts from others, guide and edit etc)
  • CiviCRM manager
  • press liaison, managing questions, customer service etc

Lawyers and legal help:

  • web platform knowledge (terms, liabilities, etc)
  • co-op issues
  • financial, tax, donation issues, esp. international

For the initial notes above, I dumped some things I had been marking privately, edited some… this is just a way to put it out there and make the ball roll. Any and all help in getting to the final usable state is welcome.

I don’t really like “CEO” / “CTO” etc. language, but those framings and any other org-chart references from other orgs could be useful references. Any organization of similar scope to us that is more fully launched and successful could be a model. If such an org has a particular role, there’s a good chance we should too, but we can consider each as we go.

I realize this dump on the forum wasn’t really ideal, wasn’t the place for me to dump my notes. I’ve moved this stuff to a task within a milestone: https://git.snowdrift.coop/groups/sd/-/milestones/4 has

And that was already marked as my immediate task, so I’ll get to that. I would love any help, particularly from @CANAWEN — but my plan is to bring up more specific discussion items as we go rather than this overwhelming set of ill-formed notes.

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