Paying members of group for work
Date: Thu, 10 Feb 1994 12:35:02 -0500 (CDT)
Our group is in the process of revisiting the issue of whether and/or when we
can pay members of the group to do work for the group.  I'd appreciate ideas,
feedback, experiences, from all of you out there.

The situation is probably familiar - we have lots and lots to do - people have
varying schedules, time availability, skills, knowledge, and experience.  For
us, rehab-ing and maintaining a building built in 1924 is part of the that
picture.  But we are also actively recruiting, dealing with phonecalls,weekly
potluck dinners and orientation sessions, followup, by-law revision, design of
units, designs for use of common space, plans for kitchenettes, publicity,
seeking financing, legal documents, costs allocation, budgeting, quarterly and
annual reports to our lenders, etc., etc., etc.  

Sometimes, it seems to take forever to get volunteers to get stuff done.  We
have had a policy of only paying members for specific tasks approved by the
group (Board of Directors). We did pay one member to do much of the initial
rehab work.  The proposal came up recently to allow members to bid to do work
that is not done within a specified time period for "chits" (work credits). 
But there is lots of concern over it.


May get things done sooner if can pay someone.
Generally, cheaper than hiring outside, IF the person has equivalent skills or
charges lots less, tho may take longer than outsider.
Can be simpler than finding/choosing outsider - and that takes someone's time
Avoids resentment of member not getting paid for stuff when we are willing to
pay outsiders more.


Insurance issues (we are looking into this).
Concerns about effects on morale / willingness to work for chits/free.  Lots of
people are putting in lots of time - will we resent it if only certain things
can be paid for?  How to value different people's times/skills and relationship
to what they do for a living.  

Hard to deal with problems if work not satisfactory - hard to fire someone.

Hard to decide which things will pay for.  

We can't pay for everything, and don't want to, but could get very expensive.

Issue of "prophet in his own country "  - group tends to give more credibility
to an outsider.


Judy Baxter, Monterey Cohousing Community, Twin Cities Area, Mpls/St.Paul MN
        (Mococo)                baxter [at]
Twin Cities CoHousing Network Voice Mail  612-930-7580
 Voice Mail for Monterey Cohousing - 612-930-7554

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