[Baypiggies] Some organizational tips

Brian Mahoney mrbmahoney at gmail.com
Thu Apr 13 23:15:49 CEST 2006

Walter Vannini of ACCU kindly sent me information about
their practices  (with permission to pass it on).

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Walter Vannini

Unfortunately, I won't be able to attend tonight's meeting.

As for my insights into running a user group, I have two
sources to draw from: as well as being President of the
local ACCU group, I'm also Secretary of the local SIGGRAPH
group. In both cases, the story is similar. There's a small
group of volunteers (four of us in the ACCU, five of us in
SIGGRAPH) who each own some task.

In the case of the ACCU, we've identified six tasks:

updating the website as needed
sending out email reminders to members
booking the meeting room
publicizing the talks (eg Craig's list, Mercury News ...)
finding and staying in contact with potential speakers
introducing the speaker at the monthly meeting

While Reg Charney was in the area, he did all of the
above (and more). When he left a year ago, the core tasks
were identified and volunteers stepped up to take

The tasks are currently owned by four of us. There has
been some shifting of the task ownership during the
last year (three of the tasks have changed owners),
and the group of volunteers has changed over time
(one volunteer dropped out six months ago, and a
new volunteer joined us two months ago) but each
task has always had a clear owner. Also, if the owner
of a task is no longer able to do the task (for example,
the room booker leaves PayPal and no longer has the
ability to book the room) he contacts the core group
(NOT the general membership) to alert them to the problem.

That's pretty much the framework. Ultimately, everything
works because the volunteers get along and want it to
work. Being clear about what needs to be done and who
is going to do it is the other part.

Feel free to redistribute this message if you think it's
appropriate. I wish BayPiggies the best of luck during
this transition time!

All the best,

--- end forwarded message ---

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