Talk:Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees/Call for feedback: Community Board seats/Candidate resources

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Collected Feedback about Candidate resources from the fourth weekly reportEdit

Here is the summarised feedback from the fourth weekly report covering February 22 - 28 of the Call for Feedback.

  • One person during the conversation with the “Noircir Wikipedia” community suggested giving all the necessary support like coaching, budget, etc. for candidates and particularly for those from underrepresented groups.
  • One volunteer from the Brazilian community is in favor of this idea and thinks that this would help the movement as a whole, as skills are shareable and not only applicable to the Board but also to other members of the movement as well.
  • A volunteer from the Wikimedistas of Ecuador User Group thinks it is important to have the right tools and mechanisms to train people from inside the movement in leadership roles like the Board of Trustees, without the need to look for people externally.
  • At a European community conversation, one person likes the idea of supporting volunteers educationally means a lot. Another person likes this idea and suggests it happen before election to the Board.
  • A member of the Wikimedia LGBT+ user group said a lot of people don’t know what the Board does, so there should be clear information about the nomination process, volunteer process, election process, etc.
  • In a conversation with a former trustee they said, “We should continuously be running training programs. We have a lot of people who have worked their way up so far, and then we should support them through development. We should invite parts of the community to imagine how to best support this goal.

Do reach out with any questions or feedback. Best, Zuz (WMF) (talk) 09:32, 5 March 2021 (UTC)

Collected Feedback about Candidate resources from the fifth weekly reportEdit

Here is the summarised feedback from the fifth weekly report covering March 1 - 7 of the Call for Feedback.

  • Jenny Ebermann, Executive Director of Wikimedia CH remarks, that any coaching before being seated on the board should not be expected, but recommends it during a trustees term. Wikimedia CH has already been running efforts on this and has changed its bylaws to enable longer terms so sustainable Board development is possible.  
  • One person from Hong Kong said this is an innovative approach to making global leaders. People can learn and adapt. Since most of the candidates come from the community, a little helping hand from the Wikimedia Foundation will support them towards becoming a better candidate and possibly a member of the Board.
  • All participants in a Conversation with Wikimédia Bénin User Group agreed that resources should be provided to candidates. A participant said that mentoring/coaching support should be the most important resource to provide to candidates. Another participant added that there should be a package of resources shared among all candidates but there should not be any individual support or resources.
  • Two members of the Elections Committee think that this idea would be only beneficial for future elections.

Do reach out with any questions or feedback. Best, DBarthel (WMF) (talk) 15:06, 14 March 2021 (UTC)

More specific mechanismsEdit

I'd like to share some more specific mechanisms, some that I shared during the recent topic panel or that we brainstormed together there:

  • There should be office hours conducted in multiple languages and substantial outreach to all of the wiki communities. Materials explaining board work and commitments to newcomers should be updated and translated widely.
  • There should be special encouragement of those from underrepresented communities and backgrounds to run in the campaign, while making resources available to everyone.
  • Establish a mentorship program where potential candidates can get connected with past board members and past candidates. There are many generous past board members and other experienced people who could share an hour or so of their time in individualized support.
  • Make it easier for candidates to get their message out through candidate forums. This could be in the form of a series of friendly interviews with all candidates, perhaps shared on something like Wikipedia Weekly Network.
  • There should be more incentives and opportunities for board candidates and members. Future leaders identified during the campaign should be supported with professional training and other resources even if they do not win, as well as be considered for other positions. There should be reimbursement of expenses related to board service such as childcare during meetings, so that such service is not as limited by personal financial resources.
  • There should be a social campaign for people to encourage and informally nominate their friends to run as candidates, maybe with WikiLove-like talk page messages.

--Pharos (talk) 22:43, 14 March 2021 (UTC)

I seconded every single point here, especially with regard to "special encouragement" and "mentorship program". ··· 🌸 Rachmat04 · 02:36, 15 March 2021 (UTC)

Collected feedback on "Candidate resources" from the sixth weekly reportEdit

Here follows the collected feedback on the idea, "Candidate resources", from the sixth weekly report covering the call for feedback during March 8 - 14.: Meta-wiki Talk page conversation statistics: 2 users from 2 different home wikis have participated in the conversation on this idea's talk page.

  • Pharos, who proposed the idea, said on the idea talk page on Meta, added what he sees are key aspects of this idea. There should be:
    • office hours conducted in multiple languages
    • substantial outreach to all of the wiki communities
    • materials explaining board work and commitments to newcomers should be updated and translated widely
    • a special encouragement of those from underrepresented communities and backgrounds to run in the campaign
    • establish a mentorship program where potential candidates can get connected with past board members and past candidates.
    • things to make it easier for candidates to get their message out through candidate forums (friendly interviews with all candidates, shared on something like Wikipedia Weekly Network
    • more incentives and opportunities for board candidates and members.
    • professional training and other resources for everyone.
    • reimbursement of expenses related to board service such as childcare during meetings, so that such service is not as limited by personal financial resources.
    • social campaign for people to encourage and informally nominate their friends to run as candidates, maybe with WikiLove-like talk page messages.
      • Another person agreed with this.
  • Volunteers from Urdu community suggested organizing debates or group discussions amongst candidates to evaluate candidate ability to debate instead of simply agreeing with the group.
  • A volunteer in the Spanish Telegram chat believes that the people who are going to be part of the Board should be trained before they are elected. In order not to discriminate, all those who apply should be trained.
  • A CIS-A2K staff member said that even quotas won’t be of much help if “underrepresented” communities are not aware of the opportunity they have, and huge efforts should be put into creating awareness.
  • Three volunteers welcomed this warmer approach in the selection of the community Board seats. This means people helping other people shape the future Board of Trustees.
  • A volunteer from Goa suggested providing support for candidates in responding to questions asked during the elections. Talking to someone over a call is better than writing a lengthy response, staff can draft responses based on candidates’ thoughts.
  • During the "Support for Candidates" panel session one person suggested a team to support candidates before elections to inform and coach potential candidates about the election process. The candidate support team should also identify community members with potential and invite them to contest in the elections.
  • Former trustee Christophe Henner  said this has been done in the past but not systemic and organized (citing a case of supporting African leaders, where he and Katherine Maher were involved). He said this is good for the movement overall.
  • During a 1:1 with Florence Devouard, former Board member, she said that training for board members is needed with certifications and it should be organized by independent organizations outside the movement. Training like Leadership and Crisis Management could be offered to community members.
  • During a 1:1 with Florence Devouard, former Board member, said It could be interesting to have an experience-sharing mechanism for former board members to share their experience with the community and with candidates.
  • During the "Support for Candidates" panel session one person suggested pairing people with past or current board members.

Please reach out if you have any questions or comments. DBarthel (WMF) (talk) 20:48, 17 March 2021 (UTC)

I have mentioned on the Topics panel that "Candidates or applicants must ensure that they will commit in completing the training or resources they had requested and safety nets must be put in place who will attend in training sessions for their own advantage and abandon the candidacy after the training is over (or resources had been delivered to the applicant)." Unfortunately, this feedback was not included by your facilitator in the report. --Exec8 (talk) 14:43, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
Thank you @Exec8: for bringing our attention to this. We appreciate your continuous feedback. We have updated the panel session report and the main report accordingly. Best, Zuz (WMF) (talk) 22:28, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
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