A Proposal for a GCG Charter Committee
How can WE create a Community of Practice for Gamechangers GO?
From my perspective there is no community of practice yet. The possibility of creating one was presented to us in the materials about Community of Practice in Prompt 8 and in the preparation directions for our Group Meeting. WE were given the challenge of creating a “charter document” in our group meetings:
GameChangers GO was created for you to live into wisdom, purpose, and integrity. You become what you think about. How will you keep thinking about wisdom, purpose, and integrity with the same depth and intention as the last 8 weeks? We need to make GCG a community of practice. What should GameChangers GO be? The Australia session should create a charter document that works through these issues. Make it a Google doc and share it on Slack with the U.S. session before they start 14 hours later. The U.S. session will revise it and post the final version in Slack for general comment. (90 minutes)
WE, all of us, were presented with the challenge. Douglas and Sarah did not present us with a ready-made, fast food, version of a Community of Practice Charter, with all the “right/perfect” rules for magically making a wonderful, loving, caring, “beloved community” for us to seamlessly move into after our GCG course experience. They could have chosen to do that, but they didn’t. They could have created a structure, a charter, based on/gleaned from the experiences of CoP’s (yes, “communities of practice” are such a wide spread “movement” of sorts that the term itself has been acronym-ized), but the people in the community – the real-live, unique, human beings in the community – are who “make or break” a community. No rules or structure or charter can “create” a “beloved community” or even a “sentimental nicey-nice community.”
Personally I thought it was quite ambitious to think WE could make up a “final version” of a charter in two meetings, especially since I had no experience of the Community of Practice (CoP) movement. I did my best, however, to prepare for the Australian session by studying the Community of Practice materials in some depth and breadth, including watching a video of a training one of the founders/leaders of the CoP movement had done recently.
The charge in the Prompt was to “work through these issues” and come up with “concrete” answers:
What is the domain, the community, and the practice? Be as concrete as you can.
I had a vague sense of what “domain” meant from my reading of the materials, but how to apply it to the WE of GCG required some thought and “caring questioning” on my part: First I thought of “the entrepreneur’s domain,” but while it seemed to make sense for some of us, it didn’t for all of us (and a “community” that doesn’t serve all of the community members is not a successful “community” in my opinion and will definitely NOT be a “beloved community”). I then played around with “learning domain” as a possible domain, since in one way or another several (probably all) of us are “into” learning and how to help others learn to change their games. But that didn’t seem to fit well enough, either.
Then I realized (Duh!), the domain for a GCG CoP would be the domain of “Changing the Game.” That made logical sense, of course, because it is really the only one thing we can all agree we have in common, since we all joined the Gamechangers GO program. Before proposing it as a “Concrete Proposal” I mindmapped it as a “caring question” with regard to each of us: “What is the game Amanda wants to change?” . . . “What is the game Regina wants to change?” . . . . . . for each of us. I found it helpful to frame “the game question” as also a “team question.”
Here’s link to the Mindmap I came up with for everyone in GCG1, framing in terms of the “the team’s game you want to change.” I titled the Mindmap “THE GCG1 CoP DOMAIN PROPOSAL: CHANGING THE OUTER TEAM’S GAME” [I used “outer” as opposed to changing the inner games, which was a separate question in the prompt.]
CONCRETE PROPOSAL: For everyone look at the Mindmap I drafted and let me know of any changes or additions to what I came up with for your game and team, as well as any comments you might have about it. I think it is important for us all to have a clear, basic, overall sense of the outer games each of us is working toward changing. Using the “team metaphor” it is important for us to know what each person’s “position on the team” is to be able to “play well/effectively” with them. This Mindmap is one way to help us “know each other’s positions on the GCG Team” is a simple visual. I’m happy to discuss one-on-one with anyone.
Personally, I think all of us being clear on the Domain of our CoP (inwardly/personally/individually and outwardly/in relation to each other) is really, really important. It sets the foundation for our “purpose” as a group/team/community. To the degree any of us or all of us are not clear on “the purpose” of our CoP, we won’t really “agree” with it, and when there is not full agreement, there’ll be more likelihood of creating conflict among ourselves (not intentionally) [this again is why I like/recommend the “team” metaphor – teams always, or by definition have a clear goal, clear purpose, that everyone on the team is very clear on.]
Notice that was just my efforts to come to clarity on “the domain” and how it applies to each of us individually. The first bullet point of the items to discuss at our meeting was “What is the domain, the community, and the practice? Be as concrete as you can.”
The Community is either just GCG1 our first cohort or everyone who goes through the GCG course or just those who proactively join and agree to the charter. The “community issue” was not discussed. I think this was assumed that it would be everyone who takes the GCG course.
And then there were the other bullet points in the Prompt 8 directions:
Look at the activities that communities of practice engage in. What appeals to you?
I don’t know enough about what are the activities of successful communities of practice to have been able to discuss this at our meeting. But I think this is something we can do gradually if we are all (or enough of us) committed to helping to create a CoP that serves us all.
Is GCG a community of practice for inner work or outer work? How? Be concrete.
It is was obvious to me that it would be for both inner work and outer work. I’d state the “inner work” as “changing one’s inner games around changing the outer games we want to change.”
Idea — Possible Concrete Proposal: Each of us asking ourselves: What are 3 Inner Games I want to change to help me improve my skill at changing the outer games I want to change? We’d have 3 or 4 weeks for each of us to decide on three “inner games” we wanted to change over the next 3/6/12 months. Get a one on one partner to get clarity on stating the 3 inner games you want to change. Then post on the website [in non-public post] for us all to comment on. Benefits: Making commitment out loud to each other of just a few “inner games” we each want to change will help build our trust in ourselves and in each other . . . and we just might be able to help each other change the inner games that don’t serve us well.
“Communities of practice enable practitioners to take collective responsibility for managing the knowledge they need, recognizing that, given the proper structure, they are in the best position to do this.” What is the proper structure GCG needs?
This is where I think careful, caring, attention is needed.
CONCRETE PROPOSAL: Creating a “GCG Charter Team” of 3-4 of us to create and post the “Charter/structure proposal” by a certain date (eg. by Dec. 18th) and everyone to comment by certain date (eg. by Dec. 31st) And maybe it would be easy to get agreement that way, but methinks that having a “Charter Clearness Committee meeting” for the whole group by a certain date (eg. Jan 8th) would be good for “the team.”
How willing are you to share responsibility for managing the knowledge you need?
To be determined by each of us after we’ve agreed to a Charter — to a Structure