TED Conversations

Kamren Kubesh

Organizer @ TEDxUMN, Cuningham Group Architecture, P.A.


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What was your volunteer experience? The good and the bad.

I am doing some researching on the problems within out volunteer systems. I am looking for varying answers, it may be something personal or a large organization. What works and what does not work?


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    Apr 28 2013: The talk you linked is terrific and he nailed the bottom up idea which is the opposite of most organizations. As he says the key is to find out what is wanted. Thus eliminating the types of incidents that occur with the hippos.

    But you also need the top down which he also talks about. The idea is that you have to channel the inflow if it is one guy he is going to get blasted into oblivion but if you can divert the flow to channels which each area being handled by a different person.you have an organization. Which is that the whole is is greater than the sum of the parts. I will disagree with what the speaker said about planning which imo would be tantamount to driving a boat without a rudder.

    It is important to institute policy so you aren't making the same mistakes in perpetuity. If you have no policy you are forcing the guy to invent his own. This is at the heart of your training. Training towards the goal is the magic part of an organization and where you will become a Juggernaut. Cannot overstate the importance of this.

    I would look into lean manufacturing as this is relevant to any business.

    You need to establish metrics for the main areas of you business so that you are not basing your decisions off of opinion or rhetoric.

    You can determine the quality by comparing what you are doing to what the customer wants this guides the purpose of your business. Which is something that the customer wants. Don't think because you are a volunteer organization that you do not have a customer. The main goal of your organization should be very well known and trained toward if you assume you will be dissapointed.

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