Leap Futures Overview
As of February 2022
This overview provides a starting point for the LFI process. We believe the process is as important as the final result. To that end, the facilitator will strive to make this an equitable, transparent, and inclusive collaboration. If you’d prefer, you can download this Leap Futures Initiative Overview.
We’re currently in discussions and expect to have the facilitator selected and underway soon. However, it’s important to note that the Morino Ventures support and funding for this process are contingent on these criteria:
- Foundation definitions will be maintained and built upon
- Purpose will remain tied to performance and substantially aligned to the LAC’s current mission: “Convincing social-sector leaders to invest in continuous improvement so nonprofits can be high-performance organizations, with the ability to deliver—over a prolonged period of time—equitable, meaningful, measurable, and financially sustainable results for the people or causes the organization is in existence to serve.” (Note: We strongly believe that this mission statement should be updated to reflect the inextricable link between performance and equity.)
- Virtual element of community will be maintained as core to its operations.
- Process essentials
- This will be a facilitated process, led by a skilled facilitator who strongly believes in the LAC’s mission and is highly supportive of the community’s value and potential.
- It will be open, transparent, inclusive, equitable, collaborative, and participatory.
- Necessary engagement
- A critical mass of engaged, invested ambassadors come forward to participate in this process. Ideally, all active ambassadors are committed to the community moving forward, but at least half of the community (i.e., 150 active ambassadors) must explicitly agree that: 1) LAC should continue, 2) they will remain as active ambassadors, and 3) they will participate in the process. And, within this critical mass, enough ambassadors will invest the time to do the “heavy lifting” needed to get to a successful outcome.
- The decision on the community’s post-2023 direction must have the support of a supermajority of this critical mass of the LAC. To be more specific, this means 70% of this universe of active ambassadors who are committed to continuing the community per above.
- Results sought
- The LAC will define, in clear terms, what it is.
- The LAC will agree upon how it will govern itself and how it will operate via a collaborative, participatory, and consent-driven decision-making model.
- The LAC will develop a minimum viable plan for how it will become a sustainable, self-governed entity on or before January 1, 2024.
We see at least three phases for this initial work. To get this effort underway, the facilitator will start by spending time in a Learning and Design Phase with the Leap support team to learn about the community and reach out to the 100+ ambassadors who have already expressed interest in the community’s future. Then an Organizing and Defining Phase will ensure that all ambassadors have a voice and the opportunity to participate in reaching agreement on how to lead and make decisions for advancing the community. With the decision-making process agreed upon, a Planning and Operationalizing Phase will define a minimum viable plan for operating the community. While the full community will be engaged, the core of the work will most likely be done through a subset of ambassadors who have vested stakes in the community, want to see the community continue, and are able to contribute time to this effort.
With these results achieved in 2022, you and your fellow ambassadors will have the remainder of 2022 and all of 2023 to consider and act on the range of options, while the Leap support team keeps the LAC running through 2023.
If a critical mass of ambassadors decides to take this planning effort in a different direction, that’s fine—but they would do so at their own expense. I would still honor my commitment to fund the Leap support team through 2023—and the Morino Institute would continue to hold the community’s assets on behalf of the Leap Community for transfer of the brand and assets when the new entity has the support of a supermajority of the community.
Because of all you’ve done, the Leap Community can be a model for others to emulate at the very time people are seeking better ways to work in a blended, or fully virtual, mode of operation. We hope this becomes a great example of community members coming together in an equitable and inclusive collaboration to transparently define and take ownership of their community’s future.