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  • Alessandra Rizzotti

    I was just talking about this in a design thinking class this weekend. We were talking about how social entrepreneurs feel like they need to scale before they've even figured out their own process and metrics for success!

    "It's not that capacity building isn't necessary. My own organization has spent the last year strengthening its internal operations, board of directors and financial systems. Without this strength, it's hard to move forward, and it's impossible to sustain good efforts. Moreover, we all recognize that it is critical for individual leaders to develop new skill sets to run meetings better, improve planning and learn to engage in an increasingly diverse world."

    At the end of our session, we now have the goal of figuring out the answer to this question: How might we make creating a feedback loop around process and internal structure easier? We're not sure of the answer, but in our next session, we plan on addressing it. Our class is so helpful. If you're interested in starting your own, here are materials: http://plusacumen.org/human-centered-design-for-social-innovation-course-materials/

    • Andrew Willis

      Thanks for sharing Alessandra. It seems that culture has been created where a lot of nonprofit organizations and social entrepreneurs feel an immense pressure to scale as much and as soon as possible. This pressure comes from both funders and board members. It's important to take the time to develop the right norms, conditions and mindset within your organization.

      I'm curious about this class you directed me to. Is it at a cost to register for these classes? How have you found the time management aspect of it - do you feel like it gives you flexibility to work the classes and work around your daily life? I'm asking because 1) I'm interested in this class 2) I'm curious about the kinds of trainings that are offered around community change and what works for people.

      Thanks!

      • Alessandra Rizzotti

        So the classes are operated with your own group of friends. I just joined a class that my friends had already started and we decide on what schedule is the most comfortable for us. What's nice is, Acumen gives you the tools- and you can decide to use them however you like. As for trainings- you learn a lot from the reading, but don't necessarily get to go out on the field unless after the class, you want to take your idea and make it happen.