The State of The Reef 2024: chronicles from the review meeting

I am writing this from today’s @reef-full meeting, dedicated to the project’s review. This topic brings in a short writeup from that meeting, so that people who were not present can be informed and contribute their own points of view.

Round 1: what is going well

People in the meeting (@Lee, @ChrisM , @Sarah , @Sophie_B , @ugne , @mieke and myself) agreed on the following elements:

  1. Working methods are wise, efficient and embraced by everyone.
  2. As a consequence, processes have improved, and are now quite high-quality and low-attrition. Plenaries are efficient and structured; presentations and onboarding are run very effectively at the team level, with no need to involve the whole group.
  3. We have accumulated substantial and diffused knowledge about cohousing. Any member can answer competently most questions around cohousing. This is also obvious to people on the outside.
  4. There is a nice balance between structure and flexibility, efficiency and compassion. Everyone is given space to contribute in their own terms.
  5. The group is cohesive and caring, and already feels like a real community to many of us. Real friendships are being made.
  6. A real leadership is emerging which means we are not too dependent on one or two people.

Round 2: what could go better

As in all large and complex projects, lots of things could be improved! Many people went home with ideas for proposals that could be taken to their teams.

One large thing that we spent a lot of time on: we agree that our group is conflict avoidant. We agreed to make an effort to offer and accept honest feedback, both positive and negative, in the interest of the project.

@Lee steps down as coordinator: she is very tired, and the group is ready to provide the leadership needed. @ChrisM and @ugne take on interim coordination; we will choose a coordinator at the next plenary.

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I would like to provide a bit more detail here, because I find that the “she is very tired” is maybe a bit of a shortcut that I don’t deserve.

I would like to step down because there has been a significant change in my personal life, which makes that I almost have no free time availalble. This is frustrating, because I don’t have enough time for self care, and I also don’t have enough time to take on my responsibilities in The Reef.

Apart from this short-notice need to call in for help, I have lately also been contemplating about how I can best contribute to The Reef, and I sensed in myself that I no longer have the energy and motivation to keep contributing in the Coordinator role.

A final consideration is that I believe that it is a good thing to circulate roles every once and a while, and that it would just be a good thing for the group to not have me in such a central position.

That said, I regret that had to give up on such short-notice, but for the moment I am really struggling to get even a minimum of the things I need to do in life done. So I am very grateful to @ugne and @ChrisM for stepping in and taking on the organisation of the next plenary and coordination group meeting, and I remain available for support any time, and a structured hand-over to my successor.

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Hello @reef-building,

I had an action point to debrief you on the post-its that we attributed to us at the review meeting, so here we go:

  • Scouting: shifting responsibility?
  • Scouting organisation
  • Scouting [something I can’t read] (missed sites)
  • Forgo formal PFS

Noting that we didn’t go into the details of any of the post-its, what I would conclude is that these are all points that we are currently working on.

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