Present: Michael Babker (PLT), Mike Carson, (OSM), Ruth Cheesley (CLT), Ofer Cohen (OSM), Chris Davenport (PLT), Victor Drover (OSM), Javier Gomez (PLT), Alice Grevet (OSM), Tom Hutchison (PLT), David Hurley (PLT), Peter Martin (CLT), Paul Orwig (OSM), Sander Potjer (CLT), Jacques Rentzke (OSM), Marijke Stuivenberg (OSM), Radek Suski (OSM), Matt Thomas (PLT), Sarah Watz (OSM)
On November 7, 2013 in Boston, the Joomla Project leadership teams (CLT - Community Leadership Team; OSM - Open Source Matters; PLT - Production Leadership Team) met for an all-day joint meeting prior to the Joomla World Conference. The text that follows is the notes from this meeting.
BUDGET DISCUSSION AND PROCESS
(led by Vic Drover, OSM Treasurer)
The financial reports need to be simplified (irrelevant or unused account lines) and shared with all three teams regularly. Orbitz reporting should include more detail.
The budgeting process needs to be done in a more timely fashion.
CLT budget liaison: Olaf Offick; PLT budget liaison: Javier Gomez.
Explore the idea of using the budget to drive project execution for more tangible impact.
Discussions are underway with our accounting firm to allow for team-specific status reports. It requires reworking our entire accounting code structure.
Infrastructure projects: capital projects that are not specific to one team could be proposed during 3 cycles during the year (March/June/August). Projects would need to be requested within those time frames.
Physical address and registration of the project: the state of New York has high taxes. There would be a cost to move to another state (re-register TMs, etc.), but it might be worth the savings in taxation. Investigate moving to a more business-friendly state (Delaware, Texas).
ACTION ITEM: Finalize the budget for 2014 (Vic Drover, Olaf Offick, Javier Gomez)
Marketing ideas, thoughts and brainstorming:
- Joomla in schools and universities: a downloadable kit for speakers to share at schools. Speakers could identify themselves on the future volunteer portal. Consider possible funding to cover expenses.
- A marketing RFP is being put together. Pay careful attention to how creative the applicants’ reporting is and how they collect data.
- We need better monitoring of our SEO link data.
- The CLT is targeting a marketing branding project for next year as a goal with liaisons from each team. This is not a small thing and will take a lot of time. Liaisons are needed from each team. Who are we targeting with our CMS?
- Marketing requires 3-5 years to take off. Where do we want to be 3-5 years from now?
- Make slide decks and style guides available to evangelists for download.
- Focus more on having a presence at events and plan how to present our software at the event.
- Keep a global focus in the RFP process so that desired outcomes are applicable on a global scale.
- Joomla tour in Asia – would need to be carefully planned with translators. It would require locals and need to be held at a neutral venue.
- How to understand our users better? Surveys? How do we capture feedback from those who tried Joomla and moved on?
- Once the current marketing push is finished a marketing team leader should be named who is not on one of the leadership teams. If we’re going to make more committees we need to add more people to our teams.
ACTION ITEM – agree on date when all teams can send a marketing liaison to the main list. Connect liaisons with Marketing Coordinator
- Flyers – suggestions on creating a flyer. It should be available in all languages, and a reimbursement process will need to be figured out. The volunteer portal will be helpful for this kind of thing.
A translation tool is urgently needed not only for the software, but also for promotional materials. It will make marketing more effective and increase participation.
Some improvements in internationalization over the past months:
- Joomla core – step forward in adding languages
- Multilingual installer
- Joomla 3 – Landing page in Spanish & other languages (10 translations)
- Translation of j.org – more prominent pointer to landing pages
- International events are growing
- Launch of the Spanish Joomla Community Magazine
- JUGs – a lot of groups that were inactive are going again
- More and more members of leadership are attending events
- Documentation – we need a method to keep track of English updates to a doc with notifications to translation teams about the changes. A translation extension will monitor this by indicating which little chunk has had a change. Starting with Dutch and Spanish.
Most Wikipedia pages about Joomla in different languages are out of date – they could use some updating.
The continuation of several core translations is in question, and for that we need an integrated translation tool.
The teams discussed several cases of international groups requesting more control over top level domain names in their countries.
Budgeting for professional leadership training and team building would benefit the project. We would need a group that fits our vision and have agreement from all teams. Training could be broken down into chunks and done in different regions. Target areas we want to improve over the next year.
ACTION ITEM: Mike Carson will start research on professional leadership training outfits so that Vic can have some information to create a budget.
Members of the CLT discussed having more of a connection with events. A liaison would be good. Perhaps some teams should not even be under any one leadership team but have liaisons from each team. Events can fall under all teams (i.e. PLT for code sprints, dev conference, etc.).
Coding events should be publicized in such a way that local people can join in.
The teams again discussed flattening the leadership structure. For now we need to work within this structure and each team should focus on its areas. There is a tendency to focus outside those areas. What is the primary focus of each team and are we meeting those goals?
A project management tool would help us all. The CLT has been experimenting with Feng Office (Peter Martin demo-ed this Open Source tool). Eventually the volunteer portal will take the place of this workflow.
When people leave teams we lose continuity. A project management tool would help with that. The volunteer portal will also be for leadership teams, and it will help for continuity.
Deadlines are tricky in a volunteer project. Things need to be broken down into small parts that different people can take on and help out with. Too often leadership tries to take on the work and then becomes the roadblock because of overload. We need a more dedicated focus – don’t do it all yourself, find people in the community to help. We have unlimited volunteer resources. Leadership training would help.
ACTION ITEM: CLT finish evaluation of Feng and make a recommendation. Team to examine tools. Need input from all teams. Peter Martin, Mike Carson.
TESTING RESOURCES FOR PLT
Automated testing resources cover us adequately but not completely. Through Open Source options we have good coverage. We lack a Microsoft server to test against others. We need more resources so we can test. There is not enough testing on non-mysql databases. Having more people to test would really help. We need to budget it for next year.
Email Vic Drover for the link to the form and info for travel/expense reimbursement.
THIRD PARTY EVENT ATTENDANCE
There should be more coordination on attending other events and getting people to represent Joomla, with more measurement of impact.
ACTION ITEM: David Hurley, Mike Carson and Radek Suski will update and curate the list of third party events.
REVIEW OF LEADERSHIP TERMS
Last year all three teams agreed to go to one year terms. Is this process working? How does renewal work? Members wishing to renew send an email to the public list stating goals accomplished and goals for renewal, and then the team votes. OSM hasn’t had any renewals this year.
OSM is voting Bylaws changes – according to these changes and in order to be in line with New York State law, next year everyone will have to be elected again at the same time, at the Annual Meeting. This reinforces one year terms. OSM needs to stagger officer terms so we don’t lose everyone at once.
The CLT has a self-evaluation form to be filled out before asking for term renewal. Their team has three different exit dates coming up, and has just put out a call for nominees.
The question of offering scholarships for people to attend JAB was discussed.
Overall, the process for JWC scholarships was successful with 11 attendees sponsored from India, Cuba, Argentina, Ethiopia, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Kenya. The process will improve and allow more time to process visas, etc.
The word “scholarship” makes it sound like it’s only for young people or students, which is not the case. We need to find a better name for it.
There was a discussion about requiring leadership members to fill in a form to request funding to attend leadership summits/events.
ACTION ITEMS FOR THE SCHOLARSHIP TEAM: Change the name from “scholarship” to something else; plan to advertise the form well in advance of the event; create 2 different forms (one general and one for leadership members)
MORE EXPOSURE TO EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS + EDUCATION HUB
Some people speak regularly at schools all around the world about Joomla. It would be good to pool slide decks for presenting Joomla to educational institutions in a hub so that they can be shared, with an explanation of what they were used for. This effort could tie into certification.
ACTION ITEM: Sarah Watz and Ruth Cheesley will work on this idea
This topic was discussed at JAB, and it is important to have a consensus about it. The process of putting out an RFP has fairly wide acceptance. It could be a way to get around discomfort with paid staff positions, although an RFP isn’t appropriate for every kind of service (i.e. management type positions).
Leadership needs to decide what’s most important? Growth, increasing adoption, productivity and progress, or the ideology? It’s a decision we need to make over and over again.
A weakness of our existing structure is that it is hard for us to make decisions on complicated topics. We need a set of internal guidelines to which we all agree.
ACTION ITEM: come up with a unified voting process for all teams. Chris Davenport will find the original rules and share them for discussion.
OVERALL PROJECT GOALS
The rest of the meeting was spent reviewing the overall project goals for 2013, and discussing overall project goals for 2014.
Those discussions will be the topic of a separate, upcoming blog.