RE: The meetings lifestyle
From: Rob Sandelin (Exchange) (
Date: Tue, 16 Jan 1996 12:34:30 -0600
>    Mela Silva of Southside Park  wrote about the participatory
>    requirements as being a barrier, and also about meetings.I agree that
>    meetings are very often very poorly used and the commonest mistake I
>    see is groups holding large group meetings to cover business which is
>    really small group work.  
>    I heard of a community, not cohousing, which only meets for one day,
>    twice a year.  They can do this because they give almost complete
>    autonomy to individuals and they have a high expectation for personal
>    responsibility. They set it up so that any action which will effect
>    your neighbors must be posted in advance at the community center
>    bulletin board.  
>    Anyone who wants to have a say in the action or decision simply drops
>    by and talks with the individual that posts the idea. An example which
>    was given was that an individual wanted to make a community sweat
>    lodge.  This person investigated the idea, and made a proposal and
>    posted it.  Five other people had ideas, and three of them were
>    interested in helping make it happen.  So they did.  One person did not
>    like the location of the sweat lodge, but because she did not  read the
>    bulleton board as she was expected to, she kept her complaint to
>    herself. In her view, SHE was the party at fault, because she failed to
>    do her duty - read the bulletin board, and so she missed out on the
>    opportunity to have input into the project.  I found it interesting
>    that in her viewpoint, she felt she had not meet her personal
>    responsibility and thus could not whine about it later.  Whew! Talk
>    about maturity.
>    In this case, the community has instilled very large degree of personal
>    responsibility and then uses that in their decision making.   The
>    expectation is that you have to take personal responsibility to propose
>    ideas, and react to them if you care.  And if you do not, then you need
>    to accept the personal responsibility for your feelings and dump them
>    on others.
>    One of the great failings of large group meetings is that everyone sits
>    through stuff which they may not care a fig about and thus, their time
>    is wasted.  There are many alternative ways to gather and process 
>    input besides large group  meetings.
>    Rob Sandein
>    Sharingwood
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