Wow, it’s been quite some time. And in that time, I’ve completed the Anne Braden Anti-Racist Training Program, joined the Coordinating Committee for our local chapter of Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ), and started a new job as the Lead Organizer with People Acting in Community Together (PACT), a PICO federation. I’m pretty happy about where new paths have taken me, and after 5 months into this job, I’m hoping I can get back into posting here with some regularity.
In my role at PACT, I have the amazing opportunity and privilege to support and train the 3 other full time organizers and 2 part-time ones. I get to do this through meeting one-on-one weekly where we talk about the work, troubleshoot issues, and have a relevant topic that we train on. I also get two hours a week in Staff Development to train, invite, or support an organizer taking the lead in teaching all the staff about a certain skill or aspect of the work. (Other responsibilities include overseeing all of our campaigns, overseeing a leadership development curriculum for all of our leader base, and doing some organizing myself. Seriously, if I made a list of exactly what I wanted in a job, this is it.) It takes a level of confidence in myself that I don’t always have, but with our entire staff each having organized for a little over a year or less, I need to do things like invite staff to shadow meetings I lead that I know will be terrible so that they can learn from me. It’s been weird.
Anyway, I remembered throughout this process that I talk about some of the challenges the organizers are facing, skills they’re trying to build on, and things out of their control through this blog for a year (if you pretend like I didn’t basically ignore this blog for half of it). Topics I’ve written about here inspire me to do trainings for staff dev, or when I’m trying to find the words to explain how I think about a skill, I remember that a post I wrote actually already does those teachings for me. So I’ve shared a few of them (namely How to lead an effective decision-making meeting, Earl’s guide to leadership development, and the Underpants Gnomes), proud to share that I’ve been thinking about these issues for a while now.
So then I got nervous– what exactly did I write here? Is it right? If my main job is to help these organizers learn the job, do I want them learning this?Read More