[Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

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[Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Alice Wiegand-4
Hi all,

Finding the next Wikimedia Foundation Executive Director is a clear
priority for the Board. To address this challenge, the Board has created a
steering group tasked with crafting the actual job description, planning
and conducting the search, and finding ways to include community
perspectives. This steering group will be regularly consulting with the
Board throughout the search process.

Please see the ED transition team page on meta [1] to find more information
about the steering group, and get the latest updates. We have also included
three questions on the participation page to help us start forming a better
understanding of the community’s various opinions and expectations.

[1]
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_Executive_Director_Transition_Team/2016

Alice.


--
Alice Wiegand
Board of Trustees
Wikimedia Foundation

Support Free Knowledge: https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Pine W
Hi Alice,

Thank you for moving forward with this.

Questions:

1. One of the characteristics listed is "Experience in leading an
organization as ED or CEO, very preferably an NGO or F/L/OSS
(Free/Libre/Open Source Software) organization, with 250 people or more."
But recent discussions have included the possibility of spinning off
components of WMF and/or a breakup of the WMF organization, partly as a way
to mitigate the systemic risk from a dysfunctional or underperforming WMF.
So, should we be looking for an ED with the expectation that he or she will
manage an organization with 250+ employees, or should we look for someone
who has experience with spinoffs and/or breakups?

2. Will the hiring for execs for HR, Tech, and Community wait until after
the new ED is selected, or will those recruiting processes happen
independent of the ED hiring process?

3. For the search steering group. would you consider adding a
representative elected from the affiliates, and a representative elected
from the community, who are not WMF board members and can therefore be
responsive to the affiliate and community constituencies without potential
conflict with WMF interests?

Thanks!
Pine

Pine
On Apr 17, 2016 11:37, "Alice Wiegand" <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hi all,
>
> Finding the next Wikimedia Foundation Executive Director is a clear
> priority for the Board. To address this challenge, the Board has created a
> steering group tasked with crafting the actual job description, planning
> and conducting the search, and finding ways to include community
> perspectives. This steering group will be regularly consulting with the
> Board throughout the search process.
>
> Please see the ED transition team page on meta [1] to find more information
> about the steering group, and get the latest updates. We have also included
> three questions on the participation page to help us start forming a better
> understanding of the community’s various opinions and expectations.
>
> [1]
>
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_Executive_Director_Transition_Team/2016
>
> Alice.
>
>
> --
> Alice Wiegand
> Board of Trustees
> Wikimedia Foundation
>
> Support Free Knowledge: https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
_______________________________________________
Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at: https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
New messages to: [hidden email]
Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l, <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Lisa Gruwell
Hi Pine-

I can answer your second question for you.  We are moving forward with
hiring the CTO, VP of HR, and VP of Community (in that order) during the
interim.

Best,
Lisa

On Sun, Apr 17, 2016 at 1:52 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hi Alice,
>
> Thank you for moving forward with this.
>
> Questions:
>
> 1. One of the characteristics listed is "Experience in leading an
> organization as ED or CEO, very preferably an NGO or F/L/OSS
> (Free/Libre/Open Source Software) organization, with 250 people or more."
> But recent discussions have included the possibility of spinning off
> components of WMF and/or a breakup of the WMF organization, partly as a way
> to mitigate the systemic risk from a dysfunctional or underperforming WMF.
> So, should we be looking for an ED with the expectation that he or she will
> manage an organization with 250+ employees, or should we look for someone
> who has experience with spinoffs and/or breakups?
>
> 2. Will the hiring for execs for HR, Tech, and Community wait until after
> the new ED is selected, or will those recruiting processes happen
> independent of the ED hiring process?
>
> 3. For the search steering group. would you consider adding a
> representative elected from the affiliates, and a representative elected
> from the community, who are not WMF board members and can therefore be
> responsive to the affiliate and community constituencies without potential
> conflict with WMF interests?
>
> Thanks!
> Pine
>
> Pine
> On Apr 17, 2016 11:37, "Alice Wiegand" <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > Hi all,
> >
> > Finding the next Wikimedia Foundation Executive Director is a clear
> > priority for the Board. To address this challenge, the Board has created
> a
> > steering group tasked with crafting the actual job description, planning
> > and conducting the search, and finding ways to include community
> > perspectives. This steering group will be regularly consulting with the
> > Board throughout the search process.
> >
> > Please see the ED transition team page on meta [1] to find more
> information
> > about the steering group, and get the latest updates. We have also
> included
> > three questions on the participation page to help us start forming a
> better
> > understanding of the community’s various opinions and expectations.
> >
> > [1]
> >
> >
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_Executive_Director_Transition_Team/2016
> >
> > Alice.
> >
> >
> > --
> > Alice Wiegand
> > Board of Trustees
> > Wikimedia Foundation
> >
> > Support Free Knowledge: https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > New messages to: [hidden email]
> > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
>
_______________________________________________
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Pine W
Lisa,

Good to hear. Thanks.

I'm aware that my first question might feel like it's a lot for the Board
to digest while it's got so many other urgent issues. However, it seems to
me that any ED candidate would want to know if spinoffs or a breakup are
under consideration, and that if these are likely or planned then the
selection process will need to take theses issues into account when trying
to find a candidate with optimal fit. Also impacting the search process is
that it might be  easier to find two or three EDs for two or three
separate, smaller, and more focused orgs than to try to find a single ED
who can handle the wide and deep complexity of WMF in its current form. I
have faith in Katherine as an interim ED and perhaps even as the ultimate
selection, and I think that Katherine's abilities will provide us all some
time and breathing room to think through questions about possible spinoffs
and/or breakup. So, we can take some time to think carefully about the
spinoff/breakup issue before proceeding further with selecting an ED for an
organization that is currently very complex and is a significant systemic
risk in the Wikimedia ecosystem.

Pine
On Apr 17, 2016 18:51, "Lisa Gruwell" <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hi Pine-
>
> I can answer your second question for you.  We are moving forward with
> hiring the CTO, VP of HR, and VP of Community (in that order) during the
> interim.
>
> Best,
> Lisa
>
> On Sun, Apr 17, 2016 at 1:52 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > Hi Alice,
> >
> > Thank you for moving forward with this.
> >
> > Questions:
> >
> > 1. One of the characteristics listed is "Experience in leading an
> > organization as ED or CEO, very preferably an NGO or F/L/OSS
> > (Free/Libre/Open Source Software) organization, with 250 people or more."
> > But recent discussions have included the possibility of spinning off
> > components of WMF and/or a breakup of the WMF organization, partly as a
> way
> > to mitigate the systemic risk from a dysfunctional or underperforming
> WMF.
> > So, should we be looking for an ED with the expectation that he or she
> will
> > manage an organization with 250+ employees, or should we look for someone
> > who has experience with spinoffs and/or breakups?
> >
> > 2. Will the hiring for execs for HR, Tech, and Community wait until after
> > the new ED is selected, or will those recruiting processes happen
> > independent of the ED hiring process?
> >
> > 3. For the search steering group. would you consider adding a
> > representative elected from the affiliates, and a representative elected
> > from the community, who are not WMF board members and can therefore be
> > responsive to the affiliate and community constituencies without
> potential
> > conflict with WMF interests?
> >
> > Thanks!
> > Pine
> >
> > Pine
> > On Apr 17, 2016 11:37, "Alice Wiegand" <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >
> > > Hi all,
> > >
> > > Finding the next Wikimedia Foundation Executive Director is a clear
> > > priority for the Board. To address this challenge, the Board has
> created
> > a
> > > steering group tasked with crafting the actual job description,
> planning
> > > and conducting the search, and finding ways to include community
> > > perspectives. This steering group will be regularly consulting with the
> > > Board throughout the search process.
> > >
> > > Please see the ED transition team page on meta [1] to find more
> > information
> > > about the steering group, and get the latest updates. We have also
> > included
> > > three questions on the participation page to help us start forming a
> > better
> > > understanding of the community’s various opinions and expectations.
> > >
> > > [1]
> > >
> > >
> >
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_Executive_Director_Transition_Team/2016
> > >
> > > Alice.
> > >
> > >
> > > --
> > > Alice Wiegand
> > > Board of Trustees
> > > Wikimedia Foundation
> > >
> > > Support Free Knowledge: https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > New messages to: [hidden email]
> > > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > New messages to: [hidden email]
> > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> >
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
_______________________________________________
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Oliver Keyes-5
So you're suggesting we don't find an ED for the biggest org in the
movement because there's a thread on a mailing list about spinning bits of
it off?

I think hiring an ED can be done safely. Spinning elements off the WMF is
something that has already been done, repeatedly, be it duties (the FDC,
ish) or departments (see the WikiEd Foundation). In neither case did senior
leadership suddenly find they had nothing to do.

I guarantee that finding three executive directors is not an easier task
than finding one, however you split the duties.

On Monday, 18 April 2016, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Lisa,
>
> Good to hear. Thanks.
>
> I'm aware that my first question might feel like it's a lot for the Board
> to digest while it's got so many other urgent issues. However, it seems to
> me that any ED candidate would want to know if spinoffs or a breakup are
> under consideration, and that if these are likely or planned then the
> selection process will need to take theses issues into account when trying
> to find a candidate with optimal fit. Also impacting the search process is
> that it might be  easier to find two or three EDs for two or three
> separate, smaller, and more focused orgs than to try to find a single ED
> who can handle the wide and deep complexity of WMF in its current form. I
> have faith in Katherine as an interim ED and perhaps even as the ultimate
> selection, and I think that Katherine's abilities will provide us all some
> time and breathing room to think through questions about possible spinoffs
> and/or breakup. So, we can take some time to think carefully about the
> spinoff/breakup issue before proceeding further with selecting an ED for an
> organization that is currently very complex and is a significant systemic
> risk in the Wikimedia ecosystem.
>
> Pine
> On Apr 17, 2016 18:51, "Lisa Gruwell" <[hidden email]
> <javascript:;>> wrote:
>
> > Hi Pine-
> >
> > I can answer your second question for you.  We are moving forward with
> > hiring the CTO, VP of HR, and VP of Community (in that order) during the
> > interim.
> >
> > Best,
> > Lisa
> >
> > On Sun, Apr 17, 2016 at 1:52 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]
> <javascript:;>> wrote:
> >
> > > Hi Alice,
> > >
> > > Thank you for moving forward with this.
> > >
> > > Questions:
> > >
> > > 1. One of the characteristics listed is "Experience in leading an
> > > organization as ED or CEO, very preferably an NGO or F/L/OSS
> > > (Free/Libre/Open Source Software) organization, with 250 people or
> more."
> > > But recent discussions have included the possibility of spinning off
> > > components of WMF and/or a breakup of the WMF organization, partly as a
> > way
> > > to mitigate the systemic risk from a dysfunctional or underperforming
> > WMF.
> > > So, should we be looking for an ED with the expectation that he or she
> > will
> > > manage an organization with 250+ employees, or should we look for
> someone
> > > who has experience with spinoffs and/or breakups?
> > >
> > > 2. Will the hiring for execs for HR, Tech, and Community wait until
> after
> > > the new ED is selected, or will those recruiting processes happen
> > > independent of the ED hiring process?
> > >
> > > 3. For the search steering group. would you consider adding a
> > > representative elected from the affiliates, and a representative
> elected
> > > from the community, who are not WMF board members and can therefore be
> > > responsive to the affiliate and community constituencies without
> > potential
> > > conflict with WMF interests?
> > >
> > > Thanks!
> > > Pine
> > >
> > > Pine
> > > On Apr 17, 2016 11:37, "Alice Wiegand" <[hidden email]
> <javascript:;>> wrote:
> > >
> > > > Hi all,
> > > >
> > > > Finding the next Wikimedia Foundation Executive Director is a clear
> > > > priority for the Board. To address this challenge, the Board has
> > created
> > > a
> > > > steering group tasked with crafting the actual job description,
> > planning
> > > > and conducting the search, and finding ways to include community
> > > > perspectives. This steering group will be regularly consulting with
> the
> > > > Board throughout the search process.
> > > >
> > > > Please see the ED transition team page on meta [1] to find more
> > > information
> > > > about the steering group, and get the latest updates. We have also
> > > included
> > > > three questions on the participation page to help us start forming a
> > > better
> > > > understanding of the community’s various opinions and expectations.
> > > >
> > > > [1]
> > > >
> > > >
> > >
> >
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_Executive_Director_Transition_Team/2016
> > > >
> > > > Alice.
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > --
> > > > Alice Wiegand
> > > > Board of Trustees
> > > > Wikimedia Foundation
> > > >
> > > > Support Free Knowledge: https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate
> > > > _______________________________________________
> > > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > > New messages to: [hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > > Unsubscribe:
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > > <mailto:[hidden email] <javascript:;>
> ?subject=unsubscribe>
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > New messages to: [hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > <mailto:[hidden email] <javascript:;>
> ?subject=unsubscribe>
> > >
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > New messages to: [hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > <mailto:[hidden email] <javascript:;>
> ?subject=unsubscribe>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> New messages to: [hidden email] <javascript:;>
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email] <javascript:;>
> ?subject=unsubscribe>
_______________________________________________
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Tanweer Morshed
Hi everyone,

I agree with Pine on his 3rd proposal. Including a representative from the
affiliates and another from the community into the search steering group
should help including the input from wider Wikimedia community. This would
be positive both for the search process and the recruitment.


Regards,
Tanweer

On Mon, Apr 18, 2016 at 4:12 PM, Oliver Keyes <[hidden email]> wrote:

> So you're suggesting we don't find an ED for the biggest org in the
> movement because there's a thread on a mailing list about spinning bits of
> it off?
>
> I think hiring an ED can be done safely. Spinning elements off the WMF is
> something that has already been done, repeatedly, be it duties (the FDC,
> ish) or departments (see the WikiEd Foundation). In neither case did senior
> leadership suddenly find they had nothing to do.
>
> I guarantee that finding three executive directors is not an easier task
> than finding one, however you split the duties.
>
> On Monday, 18 April 2016, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > Lisa,
> >
> > Good to hear. Thanks.
> >
> > I'm aware that my first question might feel like it's a lot for the Board
> > to digest while it's got so many other urgent issues. However, it seems
> to
> > me that any ED candidate would want to know if spinoffs or a breakup are
> > under consideration, and that if these are likely or planned then the
> > selection process will need to take theses issues into account when
> trying
> > to find a candidate with optimal fit. Also impacting the search process
> is
> > that it might be  easier to find two or three EDs for two or three
> > separate, smaller, and more focused orgs than to try to find a single ED
> > who can handle the wide and deep complexity of WMF in its current form. I
> > have faith in Katherine as an interim ED and perhaps even as the ultimate
> > selection, and I think that Katherine's abilities will provide us all
> some
> > time and breathing room to think through questions about possible
> spinoffs
> > and/or breakup. So, we can take some time to think carefully about the
> > spinoff/breakup issue before proceeding further with selecting an ED for
> an
> > organization that is currently very complex and is a significant systemic
> > risk in the Wikimedia ecosystem.
> >
> > Pine
> > On Apr 17, 2016 18:51, "Lisa Gruwell" <[hidden email]
> > <javascript:;>> wrote:
> >
> > > Hi Pine-
> > >
> > > I can answer your second question for you.  We are moving forward with
> > > hiring the CTO, VP of HR, and VP of Community (in that order) during
> the
> > > interim.
> > >
> > > Best,
> > > Lisa
> > >
> > > On Sun, Apr 17, 2016 at 1:52 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]
> > <javascript:;>> wrote:
> > >
> > > > Hi Alice,
> > > >
> > > > Thank you for moving forward with this.
> > > >
> > > > Questions:
> > > >
> > > > 1. One of the characteristics listed is "Experience in leading an
> > > > organization as ED or CEO, very preferably an NGO or F/L/OSS
> > > > (Free/Libre/Open Source Software) organization, with 250 people or
> > more."
> > > > But recent discussions have included the possibility of spinning off
> > > > components of WMF and/or a breakup of the WMF organization, partly
> as a
> > > way
> > > > to mitigate the systemic risk from a dysfunctional or underperforming
> > > WMF.
> > > > So, should we be looking for an ED with the expectation that he or
> she
> > > will
> > > > manage an organization with 250+ employees, or should we look for
> > someone
> > > > who has experience with spinoffs and/or breakups?
> > > >
> > > > 2. Will the hiring for execs for HR, Tech, and Community wait until
> > after
> > > > the new ED is selected, or will those recruiting processes happen
> > > > independent of the ED hiring process?
> > > >
> > > > 3. For the search steering group. would you consider adding a
> > > > representative elected from the affiliates, and a representative
> > elected
> > > > from the community, who are not WMF board members and can therefore
> be
> > > > responsive to the affiliate and community constituencies without
> > > potential
> > > > conflict with WMF interests?
> > > >
> > > > Thanks!
> > > > Pine
> > > >
> > > > Pine
> > > > On Apr 17, 2016 11:37, "Alice Wiegand" <[hidden email]
> > <javascript:;>> wrote:
> > > >
> > > > > Hi all,
> > > > >
> > > > > Finding the next Wikimedia Foundation Executive Director is a clear
> > > > > priority for the Board. To address this challenge, the Board has
> > > created
> > > > a
> > > > > steering group tasked with crafting the actual job description,
> > > planning
> > > > > and conducting the search, and finding ways to include community
> > > > > perspectives. This steering group will be regularly consulting with
> > the
> > > > > Board throughout the search process.
> > > > >
> > > > > Please see the ED transition team page on meta [1] to find more
> > > > information
> > > > > about the steering group, and get the latest updates. We have also
> > > > included
> > > > > three questions on the participation page to help us start forming
> a
> > > > better
> > > > > understanding of the community’s various opinions and expectations.
> > > > >
> > > > > [1]
> > > > >
> > > > >
> > > >
> > >
> >
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_Executive_Director_Transition_Team/2016
> > > > >
> > > > > Alice.
> > > > >
> > > > >
> > > > > --
> > > > > Alice Wiegand
> > > > > Board of Trustees
> > > > > Wikimedia Foundation
> > > > >
> > > > > Support Free Knowledge:
> https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate
> > > > > _______________________________________________
> > > > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > > > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > > > New messages to: [hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > > > Unsubscribe:
> > https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > > > <mailto:[hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > ?subject=unsubscribe>
> > > > _______________________________________________
> > > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > > New messages to: [hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > > Unsubscribe:
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > > <mailto:[hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > ?subject=unsubscribe>
> > > >
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > New messages to: [hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > <mailto:[hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > ?subject=unsubscribe>
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Joseph Seddon-6
Does Dariusz as a community selected board member not count?

Seddon

On Mon, Apr 18, 2016 at 11:26 AM, Tanweer Morshed <[hidden email]>
wrote:

> Hi everyone,
>
> I agree with Pine on his 3rd proposal. Including a representative from the
> affiliates and another from the community into the search steering group
> should help including the input from wider Wikimedia community. This would
> be positive both for the search process and the recruitment.
>
>
> Regards,
> Tanweer
>
> On Mon, Apr 18, 2016 at 4:12 PM, Oliver Keyes <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > So you're suggesting we don't find an ED for the biggest org in the
> > movement because there's a thread on a mailing list about spinning bits
> of
> > it off?
> >
> > I think hiring an ED can be done safely. Spinning elements off the WMF is
> > something that has already been done, repeatedly, be it duties (the FDC,
> > ish) or departments (see the WikiEd Foundation). In neither case did
> senior
> > leadership suddenly find they had nothing to do.
> >
> > I guarantee that finding three executive directors is not an easier task
> > than finding one, however you split the duties.
> >
> > On Monday, 18 April 2016, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >
> > > Lisa,
> > >
> > > Good to hear. Thanks.
> > >
> > > I'm aware that my first question might feel like it's a lot for the
> Board
> > > to digest while it's got so many other urgent issues. However, it seems
> > to
> > > me that any ED candidate would want to know if spinoffs or a breakup
> are
> > > under consideration, and that if these are likely or planned then the
> > > selection process will need to take theses issues into account when
> > trying
> > > to find a candidate with optimal fit. Also impacting the search process
> > is
> > > that it might be  easier to find two or three EDs for two or three
> > > separate, smaller, and more focused orgs than to try to find a single
> ED
> > > who can handle the wide and deep complexity of WMF in its current
> form. I
> > > have faith in Katherine as an interim ED and perhaps even as the
> ultimate
> > > selection, and I think that Katherine's abilities will provide us all
> > some
> > > time and breathing room to think through questions about possible
> > spinoffs
> > > and/or breakup. So, we can take some time to think carefully about the
> > > spinoff/breakup issue before proceeding further with selecting an ED
> for
> > an
> > > organization that is currently very complex and is a significant
> systemic
> > > risk in the Wikimedia ecosystem.
> > >
> > > Pine
> > > On Apr 17, 2016 18:51, "Lisa Gruwell" <[hidden email]
> > > <javascript:;>> wrote:
> > >
> > > > Hi Pine-
> > > >
> > > > I can answer your second question for you.  We are moving forward
> with
> > > > hiring the CTO, VP of HR, and VP of Community (in that order) during
> > the
> > > > interim.
> > > >
> > > > Best,
> > > > Lisa
> > > >
> > > > On Sun, Apr 17, 2016 at 1:52 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]
> > > <javascript:;>> wrote:
> > > >
> > > > > Hi Alice,
> > > > >
> > > > > Thank you for moving forward with this.
> > > > >
> > > > > Questions:
> > > > >
> > > > > 1. One of the characteristics listed is "Experience in leading an
> > > > > organization as ED or CEO, very preferably an NGO or F/L/OSS
> > > > > (Free/Libre/Open Source Software) organization, with 250 people or
> > > more."
> > > > > But recent discussions have included the possibility of spinning
> off
> > > > > components of WMF and/or a breakup of the WMF organization, partly
> > as a
> > > > way
> > > > > to mitigate the systemic risk from a dysfunctional or
> underperforming
> > > > WMF.
> > > > > So, should we be looking for an ED with the expectation that he or
> > she
> > > > will
> > > > > manage an organization with 250+ employees, or should we look for
> > > someone
> > > > > who has experience with spinoffs and/or breakups?
> > > > >
> > > > > 2. Will the hiring for execs for HR, Tech, and Community wait until
> > > after
> > > > > the new ED is selected, or will those recruiting processes happen
> > > > > independent of the ED hiring process?
> > > > >
> > > > > 3. For the search steering group. would you consider adding a
> > > > > representative elected from the affiliates, and a representative
> > > elected
> > > > > from the community, who are not WMF board members and can therefore
> > be
> > > > > responsive to the affiliate and community constituencies without
> > > > potential
> > > > > conflict with WMF interests?
> > > > >
> > > > > Thanks!
> > > > > Pine
> > > > >
> > > > > Pine
> > > > > On Apr 17, 2016 11:37, "Alice Wiegand" <[hidden email]
> > > <javascript:;>> wrote:
> > > > >
> > > > > > Hi all,
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Finding the next Wikimedia Foundation Executive Director is a
> clear
> > > > > > priority for the Board. To address this challenge, the Board has
> > > > created
> > > > > a
> > > > > > steering group tasked with crafting the actual job description,
> > > > planning
> > > > > > and conducting the search, and finding ways to include community
> > > > > > perspectives. This steering group will be regularly consulting
> with
> > > the
> > > > > > Board throughout the search process.
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Please see the ED transition team page on meta [1] to find more
> > > > > information
> > > > > > about the steering group, and get the latest updates. We have
> also
> > > > > included
> > > > > > three questions on the participation page to help us start
> forming
> > a
> > > > > better
> > > > > > understanding of the community’s various opinions and
> expectations.
> > > > > >
> > > > > > [1]
> > > > > >
> > > > > >
> > > > >
> > > >
> > >
> >
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_Executive_Director_Transition_Team/2016
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Alice.
> > > > > >
> > > > > >
> > > > > > --
> > > > > > Alice Wiegand
> > > > > > Board of Trustees
> > > > > > Wikimedia Foundation
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Support Free Knowledge:
> > https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate
> > > > > > _______________________________________________
> > > > > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > > > > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > > > > New messages to: [hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > > > > Unsubscribe:
> > > https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > > > > <mailto:[hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > ?subject=unsubscribe>
> > > > > _______________________________________________
> > > > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > > > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > > > New messages to: [hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > > > Unsubscribe:
> > https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > > > <mailto:[hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > ?subject=unsubscribe>
> > > > >
> > > > _______________________________________________
> > > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > > New messages to: [hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > > Unsubscribe:
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > > <mailto:[hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > ?subject=unsubscribe>
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > New messages to: [hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > <mailto:[hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > ?subject=unsubscribe>
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > New messages to: [hidden email]
> > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> >
>
>
>
> --
> Regards,
> Tanweer
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
>



--
Seddon

*Advancement Associate (Community Engagement)*
*Wikimedia Foundation*
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Andy Mabbett-2
In reply to this post by Pine W
On 17 April 2016 at 21:52, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:

> But recent discussions have included the possibility of spinning off
> components of WMF and/or a breakup of the WMF organization, partly as a way
> to mitigate the systemic risk from a dysfunctional or underperforming WMF.
> So, should we be looking for an ED with the expectation that he or she will
> manage an organization with 250+ employees, or should we look for someone
> who has experience with spinoffs and/or breakups?

There has been a small amount of discussion of a vaguely-defined,
hypothetical split, which has involved only a handful of people. The
idea has not been tested with the wider community, much less developed
as a formal proposal. That's not a good basis on which to appoint an
ED.


--
Andy Mabbett
@pigsonthewing
http://pigsonthewing.org.uk

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Dariusz Jemielniak-3
In reply to this post by Joseph Seddon-6
On Mon, Apr 18, 2016 at 6:43 AM, Joseph Seddon <[hidden email]>
wrote:

> Does Dariusz as a community selected board member not count?
>
>
I would certainly hope that people DO approach me with ideas, and I am
definitely very open to the discussion within the community.

dj
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Pine W
In reply to this post by Joseph Seddon-6
Hi Joseph,

No, because board members' first duties are to WMF, not to the community or
the affiliates.

Pine

On Mon, Apr 18, 2016 at 3:43 AM, Joseph Seddon <[hidden email]>
wrote:

> Does Dariusz as a community selected board member not count?
>
> Seddon
>
> On Mon, Apr 18, 2016 at 11:26 AM, Tanweer Morshed <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
>
> > Hi everyone,
> >
> > I agree with Pine on his 3rd proposal. Including a representative from
> the
> > affiliates and another from the community into the search steering group
> > should help including the input from wider Wikimedia community. This
> would
> > be positive both for the search process and the recruitment.
> >
> >
> > Regards,
> > Tanweer
> >
> > On Mon, Apr 18, 2016 at 4:12 PM, Oliver Keyes <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
> >
> > > So you're suggesting we don't find an ED for the biggest org in the
> > > movement because there's a thread on a mailing list about spinning bits
> > of
> > > it off?
> > >
> > > I think hiring an ED can be done safely. Spinning elements off the WMF
> is
> > > something that has already been done, repeatedly, be it duties (the
> FDC,
> > > ish) or departments (see the WikiEd Foundation). In neither case did
> > senior
> > > leadership suddenly find they had nothing to do.
> > >
> > > I guarantee that finding three executive directors is not an easier
> task
> > > than finding one, however you split the duties.
> > >
> > > On Monday, 18 April 2016, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > >
> > > > Lisa,
> > > >
> > > > Good to hear. Thanks.
> > > >
> > > > I'm aware that my first question might feel like it's a lot for the
> > Board
> > > > to digest while it's got so many other urgent issues. However, it
> seems
> > > to
> > > > me that any ED candidate would want to know if spinoffs or a breakup
> > are
> > > > under consideration, and that if these are likely or planned then the
> > > > selection process will need to take theses issues into account when
> > > trying
> > > > to find a candidate with optimal fit. Also impacting the search
> process
> > > is
> > > > that it might be  easier to find two or three EDs for two or three
> > > > separate, smaller, and more focused orgs than to try to find a single
> > ED
> > > > who can handle the wide and deep complexity of WMF in its current
> > form. I
> > > > have faith in Katherine as an interim ED and perhaps even as the
> > ultimate
> > > > selection, and I think that Katherine's abilities will provide us all
> > > some
> > > > time and breathing room to think through questions about possible
> > > spinoffs
> > > > and/or breakup. So, we can take some time to think carefully about
> the
> > > > spinoff/breakup issue before proceeding further with selecting an ED
> > for
> > > an
> > > > organization that is currently very complex and is a significant
> > systemic
> > > > risk in the Wikimedia ecosystem.
> > > >
> > > > Pine
> > > > On Apr 17, 2016 18:51, "Lisa Gruwell" <[hidden email]
> > > > <javascript:;>> wrote:
> > > >
> > > > > Hi Pine-
> > > > >
> > > > > I can answer your second question for you.  We are moving forward
> > with
> > > > > hiring the CTO, VP of HR, and VP of Community (in that order)
> during
> > > the
> > > > > interim.
> > > > >
> > > > > Best,
> > > > > Lisa
> > > > >
> > > > > On Sun, Apr 17, 2016 at 1:52 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]
> > > > <javascript:;>> wrote:
> > > > >
> > > > > > Hi Alice,
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Thank you for moving forward with this.
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Questions:
> > > > > >
> > > > > > 1. One of the characteristics listed is "Experience in leading an
> > > > > > organization as ED or CEO, very preferably an NGO or F/L/OSS
> > > > > > (Free/Libre/Open Source Software) organization, with 250 people
> or
> > > > more."
> > > > > > But recent discussions have included the possibility of spinning
> > off
> > > > > > components of WMF and/or a breakup of the WMF organization,
> partly
> > > as a
> > > > > way
> > > > > > to mitigate the systemic risk from a dysfunctional or
> > underperforming
> > > > > WMF.
> > > > > > So, should we be looking for an ED with the expectation that he
> or
> > > she
> > > > > will
> > > > > > manage an organization with 250+ employees, or should we look for
> > > > someone
> > > > > > who has experience with spinoffs and/or breakups?
> > > > > >
> > > > > > 2. Will the hiring for execs for HR, Tech, and Community wait
> until
> > > > after
> > > > > > the new ED is selected, or will those recruiting processes happen
> > > > > > independent of the ED hiring process?
> > > > > >
> > > > > > 3. For the search steering group. would you consider adding a
> > > > > > representative elected from the affiliates, and a representative
> > > > elected
> > > > > > from the community, who are not WMF board members and can
> therefore
> > > be
> > > > > > responsive to the affiliate and community constituencies without
> > > > > potential
> > > > > > conflict with WMF interests?
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Thanks!
> > > > > > Pine
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Pine
> > > > > > On Apr 17, 2016 11:37, "Alice Wiegand" <[hidden email]
> > > > <javascript:;>> wrote:
> > > > > >
> > > > > > > Hi all,
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > Finding the next Wikimedia Foundation Executive Director is a
> > clear
> > > > > > > priority for the Board. To address this challenge, the Board
> has
> > > > > created
> > > > > > a
> > > > > > > steering group tasked with crafting the actual job description,
> > > > > planning
> > > > > > > and conducting the search, and finding ways to include
> community
> > > > > > > perspectives. This steering group will be regularly consulting
> > with
> > > > the
> > > > > > > Board throughout the search process.
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > Please see the ED transition team page on meta [1] to find more
> > > > > > information
> > > > > > > about the steering group, and get the latest updates. We have
> > also
> > > > > > included
> > > > > > > three questions on the participation page to help us start
> > forming
> > > a
> > > > > > better
> > > > > > > understanding of the community’s various opinions and
> > expectations.
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > [1]
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > >
> > > > > >
> > > > >
> > > >
> > >
> >
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_Executive_Director_Transition_Team/2016
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > Alice.
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > --
> > > > > > > Alice Wiegand
> > > > > > > Board of Trustees
> > > > > > > Wikimedia Foundation
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > Support Free Knowledge:
> > > https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate
> > > > > > > _______________________________________________
> > > > > > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > > > > > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > > > > > New messages to: [hidden email]
> <javascript:;>
> > > > > > > Unsubscribe:
> > > > https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > > > > > <mailto:[hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > > ?subject=unsubscribe>
> > > > > > _______________________________________________
> > > > > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > > > > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > > > > New messages to: [hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > > > > Unsubscribe:
> > > https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > > > > <mailto:[hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > > ?subject=unsubscribe>
> > > > > >
> > > > > _______________________________________________
> > > > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > > > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > > > New messages to: [hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > > > Unsubscribe:
> > https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > > > <mailto:[hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > > ?subject=unsubscribe>
> > > > _______________________________________________
> > > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > > New messages to: [hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > > Unsubscribe:
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > > <mailto:[hidden email] <javascript:;>
> > > > ?subject=unsubscribe>
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > > New messages to: [hidden email]
> > > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> > >
> >
> >
> >
> > --
> > Regards,
> > Tanweer
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> > https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> > New messages to: [hidden email]
> > Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> > <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
> >
>
>
>
> --
> Seddon
>
> *Advancement Associate (Community Engagement)*
> *Wikimedia Foundation*
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
> New messages to: [hidden email]
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
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>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Pine W
In reply to this post by Andy Mabbett-2
Hi Andy,

Just because an idea is hatched by a few people isn't a reason to dismiss
it. Otherwise, how would ideas get traction?

It seems to me that any incoming ED needs to know what the plan is, if
there is a plan, regarding possible forks from WMF. It's also highly
desirable that, if this is being actively considered, that the ED should be
someone who has experience with forks. On the other hand if the plan is to
continue with WMF in its current form, then maybe WMF should look for a
unicorn again who can manage the wide scope of WMF's activities. So the
question of whether WMF is thinking about forks is something that should go
into the calculus of the ED selection process.

Given the history of WMF, it seems to me that a fork is something that the
ED and the Board should have on their radar as possible and maybe even
likely as a desirable option. Katherine seems to be quite capable as an
interim ED, so it seems to me that this buys us some time to think
carefully about the experience that we're looking for in the next
longer-term ED (who might be Katherine); whether or not we're looking for
experience with forks is something that I think would be prudent to
consider at this stage.

I like a lot of the other ideas that are listed on
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_Executive_Director_Transition_Team/2016.
It's this issue of what to do with regard to a potential fork that I'm
trying to wrap my head around, and I hope that the Board and others are
too. I tend to think that the concept of forking WMF should get serious
consideration. That intersects a bit awkwardly with the ED transition, and
I'm thinking that the best way to get those two processes to work together
is to have the forking discussion (at least in the short term) happen first
so that we know what we're looking for in the ED transition. I'm open to
hearing other ideas; maybe Gayle could share her thoughts so I'm pinging
her.

Regards,

Pine

On Mon, Apr 18, 2016 at 4:21 AM, Andy Mabbett <[hidden email]>
wrote:

> On 17 April 2016 at 21:52, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > But recent discussions have included the possibility of spinning off
> > components of WMF and/or a breakup of the WMF organization, partly as a
> way
> > to mitigate the systemic risk from a dysfunctional or underperforming
> WMF.
> > So, should we be looking for an ED with the expectation that he or she
> will
> > manage an organization with 250+ employees, or should we look for someone
> > who has experience with spinoffs and/or breakups?
>
> There has been a small amount of discussion of a vaguely-defined,
> hypothetical split, which has involved only a handful of people. The
> idea has not been tested with the wider community, much less developed
> as a formal proposal. That's not a good basis on which to appoint an
> ED.
>
>
> --
> Andy Mabbett
> @pigsonthewing
> http://pigsonthewing.org.uk
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Oliver Keyes-5
It's not a reason to *dismiss* it, no, but it's definitely not a
reason to entirely reorganise our plans for organisational governance
in case it turns out to get traction at *some* point. And that's what
you're talking about here; making monumental changes to the timetable,
scope and demands of a very important hiring decision, because 'an
idea [was] hatched by a few people'.

The new ED should know what the plan is. But at the moment, there *is*
no plan. When you've come up with one, and people have agreed with it,
it will be an appropriate time to stick a spanner in the works. Until
then, what you're suggesting is massively over the top for the
interest the plan has got so far.

I'll be honest and say I'm pretty disappointed by your approach's
failure to consider the human cost of decisions here. The organisation
is in some amount of chaos and uncertainty, with an associated cost in
stress and ill-enjoyment for the people participating in it. You're
suggesting perpetuating that chaos. Yes, Katherine is a great interim
ED from everything I've seen, but I haven't seen you ask if she wants
to do the job long-term, which is something your idea is entirely
premised on: being able to put the burden on her, or someone like her,
while we tilt at windmills. Some consideration has to be given to the
human beings involved in this process - to the fact that this is not
an abstract theoretical exercise in optimal governance, but for a lot
of people 8-12 hours of their day, and disruptions to it carry heavy
risks, particularly given how unpleasant things have been over the
last 6-12 months.

On Mon, Apr 18, 2016 at 1:22 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hi Andy,
>
> Just because an idea is hatched by a few people isn't a reason to dismiss
> it. Otherwise, how would ideas get traction?
>
> It seems to me that any incoming ED needs to know what the plan is, if
> there is a plan, regarding possible forks from WMF. It's also highly
> desirable that, if this is being actively considered, that the ED should be
> someone who has experience with forks. On the other hand if the plan is to
> continue with WMF in its current form, then maybe WMF should look for a
> unicorn again who can manage the wide scope of WMF's activities. So the
> question of whether WMF is thinking about forks is something that should go
> into the calculus of the ED selection process.
>
> Given the history of WMF, it seems to me that a fork is something that the
> ED and the Board should have on their radar as possible and maybe even
> likely as a desirable option. Katherine seems to be quite capable as an
> interim ED, so it seems to me that this buys us some time to think
> carefully about the experience that we're looking for in the next
> longer-term ED (who might be Katherine); whether or not we're looking for
> experience with forks is something that I think would be prudent to
> consider at this stage.
>
> I like a lot of the other ideas that are listed on
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_Executive_Director_Transition_Team/2016.
> It's this issue of what to do with regard to a potential fork that I'm
> trying to wrap my head around, and I hope that the Board and others are
> too. I tend to think that the concept of forking WMF should get serious
> consideration. That intersects a bit awkwardly with the ED transition, and
> I'm thinking that the best way to get those two processes to work together
> is to have the forking discussion (at least in the short term) happen first
> so that we know what we're looking for in the ED transition. I'm open to
> hearing other ideas; maybe Gayle could share her thoughts so I'm pinging
> her.
>
> Regards,
>
> Pine
>
> On Mon, Apr 18, 2016 at 4:21 AM, Andy Mabbett <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
>
>> On 17 April 2016 at 21:52, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>
>> > But recent discussions have included the possibility of spinning off
>> > components of WMF and/or a breakup of the WMF organization, partly as a
>> way
>> > to mitigate the systemic risk from a dysfunctional or underperforming
>> WMF.
>> > So, should we be looking for an ED with the expectation that he or she
>> will
>> > manage an organization with 250+ employees, or should we look for someone
>> > who has experience with spinoffs and/or breakups?
>>
>> There has been a small amount of discussion of a vaguely-defined,
>> hypothetical split, which has involved only a handful of people. The
>> idea has not been tested with the wider community, much less developed
>> as a formal proposal. That's not a good basis on which to appoint an
>> ED.
>>
>>
>> --
>> Andy Mabbett
>> @pigsonthewing
>> http://pigsonthewing.org.uk
>>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Andy Mabbett-2
In reply to this post by Pine W
On 18 April 2016 at 18:22, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Just because an idea is hatched by a few people isn't a reason to dismiss
> it.

Indeed. Which is why I didn't dismiss it.

> It seems to me that any incoming ED needs to know what the plan is, if
> there is a plan

So far as splitting up the WMF into smaller organisations goes, there
is no plan; for the reasons I gave earlier.

> It's also highly desirable that, if this is being actively considered, that the ED should be
> someone who has experience with forks.

Do you have any evidence that it is "being actively considered",
outside of the small discussion to which I referred?

--
Andy Mabbett
@pigsonthewing
http://pigsonthewing.org.uk

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Pine W
Ironholds, I think that you're taking a negative interpretation. It seems
to me that any ED candidate is going to want to know what they're getting
into before agreeing to take the job, and if forks are on the horizon --
whether planned or only under consideration -- then this is something that
they should know about. It also seems to me that the target skill set and
experience that WMF is seeking should take these issues into consideration.
This can be done with less disruption at this stage than might first appear
(and as I think further about this issue I would in hindsight revise some
of my earlier statements for better alignment with the existing timeline
and thought process of the search committee), and it seems to me that it's
wise to think ahead now, while the search committee is actively interested
in comments about plans and can make adjustments most easily.

Andy, as far as I know there have been periodic mentions of this idea off
and on for years, but I'm unaware if the WMF Board is actively pondering
this issue. At this point I'm not thinking that it's necessary to make a
final decision about moving forward with a forking process, so much as it's
necessary that if a fork is likely to happen or likely to be seriously
considered any time in the near future then this issue should be under
consideration both by the search committee and by the ED candidates. I'm
revising my thinking as we continue this conversation and I appreciate the
questions.

Thanks,
Pine
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Oliver Keyes-5
On Tue, Apr 19, 2016 at 7:05 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Ironholds, I think that you're taking a negative interpretation. It seems
> to me that any ED candidate is going to want to know what they're getting
> into before agreeing to take the job, and if forks are on the horizon --
> whether planned or only under consideration -- then this is something that
> they should know about. It also seems to me that the target skill set and
> experience that WMF is seeking should take these issues into consideration.

The interpretation I'm taking is that you're asking for complexities
and slowdowns in an already slow and complex process. Is that
incorrect?

Yes, the ED candidate should know what they're getting into, but one
mailing list discussion does not a probability or even a plausible
possibility make. If we informed the candidates about everything that
had ever been discussed on the mailing lists, they'd die of old age
before we'd finished.

It would be nice if the ED candidate had skills that could be applied
to fork or delegate creation, sure, because it's always nice to find
candidates who are overqualified. But that doesn't mean we hire for
"must have skill at forking". That's not how skills work. We hire for
judgment and experience governing similar organisations, and then we
trust.

The old job description does not include "must be capable of suing the
NSA" - yet we managed to pull it off. Because what the old JD did call
for was an awareness and interest in public policy, and sound judgment
about what public policy issues put the movement and its goals at
risk. We hire for broad areas, not narrow. The broad areas for forking
would, presumably, be a desire to empower people at the lowest
possible level, which is already part of the process - because however
flawed we are at it sometimes (a lot of the time, really) that is
inherently part of the movement's goals and principles.

>
> Andy, as far as I know there have been periodic mentions of this idea off
> and on for years, but I'm unaware if the WMF Board is actively pondering
> this issue.

You're unaware of if the WMF Board is actively pondering this issue.
None of us are. In fact, the only commentary we have on this issue at
all recently is a single mailing list thread.

Yes, it's been debated on and off for years. It's the very definition
of a perennial proposal. And for what it's worth, I'm actually a fan
of delegating elements of the organisation's activities or creating
spinoffs! But that doesn't mean it's worth throwing in a job
description or factoring into the hiring process for an executive
director of an organisation that spent 18 months on ED hiring _before_
it was systemically traumatised.

> I'm revising my thinking as we continue this conversation and I appreciate the
> questions.
>

Well, I for one won't *be* continuing this conversation. What I said
to you was "that sounds non-trivial, please consider the disruption
and misery drawing this process out is likely to cause people". And
beyond saythat it's easier than it sounds - without, actually,
providing any evidence that it's easier than it sounds - you've done
none of that.

As a community member, as a former staffer, as a human being, I am
tired of conversations which, while polite on the surface, simply
gloss over or ignore the actual human cost of decisions that might be
reached, or the cost of even participating in the conversations in the
first place. I asked you to factor these costs in. I'm not seeing that
done. I'm not interested in engaging in discussions which lack that
consideration, any more. Our limited time on this tiny blue ball is
far too valuable for that.

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Anna Stillwell
In reply to this post by Alice Wiegand-4
Hello Alice,

Thank you for this clear update and the opportunity to provide input. I
really appreciate it.

May the force be with you!

Warmly,
/a

On Sun, Apr 17, 2016 at 11:19 AM, Alice Wiegand <[hidden email]>
wrote:

> Hi all,
>
> Finding the next Wikimedia Foundation Executive Director is a clear
> priority for the Board. To address this challenge, the Board has created a
> steering group tasked with crafting the actual job description, planning
> and conducting the search, and finding ways to include community
> perspectives. This steering group will be regularly consulting with the
> Board throughout the search process.
>
> Please see the ED transition team page on meta [1] to find more information
> about the steering group, and get the latest updates. We have also included
> three questions on the participation page to help us start forming a better
> understanding of the community’s various opinions and expectations.
>
> [1]
>
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Foundation_Executive_Director_Transition_Team/2016
>
> Alice.
>
>
> --
> Alice Wiegand
> Board of Trustees
> Wikimedia Foundation
>
> Support Free Knowledge: https://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Donate
> _______________________________________________
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--
Anna Stillwell
Director of Culture and Collaboration
Wikimedia Foundation
415.806.1536
*www.wikimediafoundation.org <http://www.wikimediafoundation.org>*
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

geni
In reply to this post by Pine W
On 20 April 2016 at 00:05, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Ironholds, I think that you're taking a negative interpretation. It seems
> to me that any ED candidate is going to want to know what they're getting
> into before agreeing to take the job, and if forks are on the horizon

They aren't. Its an incredibly bad idea to the point where people of
significance aren't even going to bother engaging with it.

--
geni

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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Pine W
In reply to this post by Oliver Keyes-5
I realize that Oliver has departed from this conversation, but since this
is a public discussion I wanted to respond to one point in particular,
which is "If we informed the candidates about everything that
had ever been discussed on the mailing lists, they'd die of old age before
we'd finished." I agree. However, the Meta page implies that there has
already been a decision that WMF will continue for the foreseeable future
as a 250+ person organization. Based on recent experience of what happens
when so much risk and responsibility is concentrated in WMF, and things go
very wrong at WMF, it therefore seems the current model of putting so many
eggs in one basket is ripe for rethinking.

On Tue, Apr 19, 2016 at 9:46 PM, geni <[hidden email]> wrote:
>They aren't. Its an incredibly bad idea to the point where people of
>significance aren't even going to bother engaging with it.

I'm curious to hear how you come to the conclusion that it's a bad idea. I
think quite the contrary. Perhaps we can discuss this in a new thread?

Thanks,

Pine

On Tue, Apr 19, 2016 at 7:14 PM, Oliver Keyes <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Tue, Apr 19, 2016 at 7:05 PM, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > Ironholds, I think that you're taking a negative interpretation. It seems
> > to me that any ED candidate is going to want to know what they're getting
> > into before agreeing to take the job, and if forks are on the horizon --
> > whether planned or only under consideration -- then this is something
> that
> > they should know about. It also seems to me that the target skill set and
> > experience that WMF is seeking should take these issues into
> consideration.
>
> The interpretation I'm taking is that you're asking for complexities
> and slowdowns in an already slow and complex process. Is that
> incorrect?
>
> Yes, the ED candidate should know what they're getting into, but one
> mailing list discussion does not a probability or even a plausible
> possibility make. If we informed the candidates about everything that
> had ever been discussed on the mailing lists, they'd die of old age
> before we'd finished.
>
> It would be nice if the ED candidate had skills that could be applied
> to fork or delegate creation, sure, because it's always nice to find
> candidates who are overqualified. But that doesn't mean we hire for
> "must have skill at forking". That's not how skills work. We hire for
> judgment and experience governing similar organisations, and then we
> trust.
>
> The old job description does not include "must be capable of suing the
> NSA" - yet we managed to pull it off. Because what the old JD did call
> for was an awareness and interest in public policy, and sound judgment
> about what public policy issues put the movement and its goals at
> risk. We hire for broad areas, not narrow. The broad areas for forking
> would, presumably, be a desire to empower people at the lowest
> possible level, which is already part of the process - because however
> flawed we are at it sometimes (a lot of the time, really) that is
> inherently part of the movement's goals and principles.
>
> >
> > Andy, as far as I know there have been periodic mentions of this idea off
> > and on for years, but I'm unaware if the WMF Board is actively pondering
> > this issue.
>
> You're unaware of if the WMF Board is actively pondering this issue.
> None of us are. In fact, the only commentary we have on this issue at
> all recently is a single mailing list thread.
>
> Yes, it's been debated on and off for years. It's the very definition
> of a perennial proposal. And for what it's worth, I'm actually a fan
> of delegating elements of the organisation's activities or creating
> spinoffs! But that doesn't mean it's worth throwing in a job
> description or factoring into the hiring process for an executive
> director of an organisation that spent 18 months on ED hiring _before_
> it was systemically traumatised.
>
> > I'm revising my thinking as we continue this conversation and I
> appreciate the
> > questions.
> >
>
> Well, I for one won't *be* continuing this conversation. What I said
> to you was "that sounds non-trivial, please consider the disruption
> and misery drawing this process out is likely to cause people". And
> beyond saythat it's easier than it sounds - without, actually,
> providing any evidence that it's easier than it sounds - you've done
> none of that.
>
> As a community member, as a former staffer, as a human being, I am
> tired of conversations which, while polite on the surface, simply
> gloss over or ignore the actual human cost of decisions that might be
> reached, or the cost of even participating in the conversations in the
> first place. I asked you to factor these costs in. I'm not seeing that
> done. I'm not interested in engaging in discussions which lack that
> consideration, any more. Our limited time on this tiny blue ball is
> far too valuable for that.
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikimedia-l mailing list, guidelines at:
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Mailing_lists/Guidelines
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> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikimedia-l,
> <mailto:[hidden email]?subject=unsubscribe>
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Pine W
Just a few comments more broadly about what I hope WMF will look for in an
ED:

(1) Realistically, I don't think that we're going to find a single human
being who can do everything that the WMF ED should do. With that in mind,
I'd like to suggest placing a lot of emphasis on this recommendation that's
already on Meta: "Proven track record for building great teams (can
properly evaluate people, make good hires)", and expand that to *building
great cross-functional teams* and *building great executive teams*.

(2) It's also important that the ED know when to cut losses. That means
that they need to have the courage and self-confidence to initiate
difficult conversations and make decisions when programs or people are
underperforming or are not good fits. Being a good manager often involves
being supportive, and it also involves holding programs and people
accountable.

I think that I've said enough in this thread, so I'll pause my involvement
here for the time being.

Onward and upward (:

Pine
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Re: [Wikimedia-l] Fwd: Wikimedia Foundation ED search steering group created

Austin Hair
On Wed, Apr 20, 2016 at 9:23 AM, Pine W <[hidden email]> wrote:
> I think that I've said enough in this thread, so I'll pause my involvement
> here for the time being.

Fortunately for you, I actually read all the way through this thread
and got to this part.

Austin

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