The tldr; version:
- I’m writing a survey for Indiemeet participants and would like your input;
- I’d like us to formalise how we organise stuff a bit better and use an online tool such as Asana to help people better coordinate together.
It’s coming to the end of the year, and the time we tend to have our annual review. I’m kicking that off a little earlier this year because I think we need to make a couple of bigger-than-usual decisions. Attendance has been low this year, but more than that we’ve lost a great many organisers who ideally we need to replace – and if we can’t replace them then I think we need to consider doing slightly less.
Over the next few days, I hope to have a survey ready that I’m going to try and get as many people – regulars, irregulars and even people who have never come – to take part. On the more fun side, this is to revive the Indie Darling Awards (we haven’t kept very good records so this seems like a cheaty way to do it). On the more organisational side, I’d like to explore a few changes in format that might help to entice new people. It would also be helpful to have an idea about our demographics (I’m thinking, pragmatically, geography rather than anything else, although I’m open to widening its scope if people think that would be helpful).
Resisting the temptation to get dragged into the debate right now, does anyone have any ideas for how we might do things differently that I could include in the survey? Note – this is not an invitation for people to bemoan the current processes, but for new ideas.
Secondly, I’d like us to get a teensy bit more organised. I’m very conscious of the fact that I’ve turned up to a few events this year where I didn’t think I was the organiser but if I didn’t do it, no one else would have. We’ve talked in the past about ensuring as many people as possible do the pitching; currently we’re in the situation where we’re lucky if we have more than one person willing to do it.
I’d like us to get to the point where we have a named host for every meetup, so it’s always clear to first timers who they should be looking for and who should be the point of contact for the venue, etc. If we can’t find a named host for every meetup, we probably shouldn’t be holding that meetup.
In addition, I’d like to have a named coordinator for each of the three regular meetups we hold (Saturdays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays). This used to be the case (with thanks to Piers, Richard, Sti, Tom and Helen), but I don’t think we currently have one for any of our regular events. Again, if we can’t find people willing to do that for each regular meetup, I think we should consider dropping one or more of our regular meetups.
The role of the coordinator is to ensure that the venues are booked, that the event pages are posted (currently on Facebook and Meetup) and to ensure that each meetup has a host (either themselves or someone else). In other words, it is mostly the stuff that needs to be done that isn’t on the days themselves.
Notwithstanding the fact that I’ll continue to struggle to attend more than half the events themselves, I’m willing to be the coordinator for the Saturday event, but we’d need someone or some people to be the coordinator for the Tuesday and Wednesday meetups.
Before I ask people to sign up as hosts and coordinators however, does this sound like a constructive way forward?
Finally, I’ve been looking at the plethora of online organising tools out there to find one that would suit us. Thus far, I’ve narrowed it down to Asana and Trello, with Asana my favoured option. But do people have any other suggestions? Or do you think it’s a terrible idea and we should continue to try to coordinate everything via email and chatting at meetups?
In case it isn’t already clear, your comments on this are very much appreciated. Please add them below.