The creation of teams

As of this writing, our #diversity-inclusion slack channel has 428 members. When I started the Drupal Diversity & Inclusion Group after DrupalCon New Orleans, I hoped that it would become something that people rallied behind and got involved with, but I didn’t set any long-term strategic plans. We grew slowly over the first ~9 months or so, and had a growth explosion in the last few months.

The flurry of activity and attention has made it obvious that we need to make sure that DD&I can scale to support the community (and better understand and include diversity-inclusion initiatives and perspectives in other countries where the Drupal community exists). Managing everything that DD&I has been doing and planning for everything that we want to do requires an organized group. We had a strategy meeting at DrupalCon Baltimore (https://github.com/drupaldiversity/administration/issues/28); a major theme of that meeting was creating teams.

The benefits of teams are:

  1. We empower people to take leadership roles
  2. We help people develop new community organizing and leadership competencies
  3. We have resources dedicated to supporting tasks that tend to fall by the wayside
  4. We give people more specific ways to get involved
  5. We increase accountability and transparency around our work

As far as I can tell, the benefits far outweigh any downsides that may surface.

We collaborated on the definitions of teams, and the responsibilities of each team (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1E24reX_62IgRAYlq97v9McDDc1fT-Jc4hqMlb7FxciM/edit#). This is our first time doing this, so the process of team selection this time is a one-off. I expect that in the future, we’ll choose team members by some mechanism that involves more voices than mine and more opinions than my own.

The teams and team leaders below were chosen in a combination of ways:

  1. firstly, and most importantly, expressed interest. No one was forced to be on a team.
  2. involvement with the group. Some folks have been here since the beginning, others have come along more recently.
  3. my own (arbitrary) assessment of individual strengths and the group’s needs at this moment.

To reiterate, I don’t believe that having me (or any one person) select team membership is going to be the process moving forward, but it did seem like the best way to get us moving. We still haven’t really defined what a “member” of the DD&I group is, but this process allows us to begin to define a “team member.”

Leadership team: Led by: Nikki Stevens

Members: Ruby Sinreich (rubyji), Greg Dunlap (heyrocker), Nathaniel Catchpole (catch), Fatima Khalid (sugaroverflow)

Content team: Led by Fatima Khalid (sugaroverflow)

Technical team: Led by Charles Leverington (cleverington)

Moderation Guidance team: Led by Alanna Burke (alannaburke)

Design team: Led by Scott Reeves (cottser)

The next steps:

  • the leaders of each team will create a space for their team to work and will gather other interested members. I (and possibly other members of the Leadership team) will be supporting them in this process.
  • teams will work together to organize themselves in a way that works for their members
  • teams will (whenever possible) hold meetings in public spaces so that people can join and/or follow along

How we work together on and between teams will evolve with time and collaboration. I’m excited that the growth of this group necessitates this step and looking forward to the work we can do together.

Written by Nikki (drnikki)