[Finance] Psychological Aspect of the Finances
pieter.iserbyt at gmail.com
Tue Aug 31 18:33:17 CEST 2010
Yes, we used a similar scheme for setting up 0x20.
We started out with founding meetings without a space, already collecting
drinks money (we still use the same carton box for collecting drinks money).
Once we found a place to rent, we calculated fixed monthly costs, and
divided that monthly cost by the number of founding members willing to chip
in. We had 10 people that did. Those 10 people agreed upon paying 40euros
for the first year so we would have time to grow.
Membership money for new members was placed on 20 euro, with possible
exceptions to be discussed in the group. We found that this allowed us to
grow and invest at the same time. Most probably we are going to evaluate
after 6 months (end of september) if the 40 euros is still needed, and drop
it because we have some spare cash now and some basic infrastructure
(founding members also back to 20).
One thing that might be of interest: we found the selling drinks thing was
really bringing in more than expected, at around (guessing) +/- 250 euros a
month profit with +/-14 members (we are now at 18 I think).
Another thing: never forget: build it, and they will come!
And also: rent usually is paid upfront (for us quarterly) so in the
beginning, you need to pay rent immediately and also start saving up for
when the next bill comes. So you need some starting capital. (Drinking money
already collected came in handy)
On Tue, Aug 31, 2010 at 6:07 PM, Ben Brown <ben at kwartzlab.ca> wrote:
> You hit the nail right on the head, this is exactly why our space uses
> monthly dues as opposed to donations. Like it or not, every space has
> fixed expenses and it's always better to know how much monthly income to
> expect (how can you properly budget without it?). As long as you have
> enough members paying dues to sustain your fixed expenses, any
> fundraising efforts or donations is extra income that can be used for
> improving the space (renovation, buying tools/materials, etc.).
> Yes, monthly dues have scared away potential members, but we've also
> attracted many members as well (even while our federal taxes nearly
> tripled in July). Many of our members believe having monthly dues (as
> opposed to optional donations) encourage personal commitment to the
> space and financial stability (something everyone wants to see before
> they put their money down). We also have people who don't make it into
> the space for months at a time, but still like to contribute financially
> by paying dues. Not only has this system kept us in the black since day
> one, but it's also allowed us the freedom to buy nifty things for
> everyone to enjoy.
> As for starting out -- Gathering initial funds to rent our space
> required a leap of faith by our pre-incorporated group. Everyone (17 at
> the time) kicked in $100 or more of startup funds to get the ball
> rolling (incorporation fees, first and last month rent, etc). We had an
> agreement that everyone signed that described what their funds were to
> be used for (and how they would be returned if we failed to rent a
> space). That being said, we didn't started collecting monthly dues until
> we had our space (which came about a month after we incorporated).
> On 8/31/2010 11:40 AM, madstringer wrote:
> > Hi!
> > When we decided that we wanted to start a hackerspace in Denver, we
> > figured out a budget, and then looked for a certain number of interested
> > individuals to contribute "seed" money to get it going. We do use the
> > "dues" system - the flip-side to your argument is that using the dues
> > systems also really only attracts people who are truly interested in
> > making things happen. I understand not wanting to scare people away, but
> > i think that if you're going to be handing the finances of a non-profit
> > (in my case), you're gonna need to be able to forecast out a certain
> > number of months, plan purchases, and be sure that you can pay the rent
> > and utilities on a space, not just for the current month, but for months
> > to come. This is harder to do on a "donations" system. I think there's
> > good and bad sides to each system, and that you need to decide which one
> > fits you the best, based on your situation. If you don't have many
> > expenses, or a space to maintain, I think maybe the donations model
> > would work better for you....
> > madstringer
> > <><><><><><><><><><><>
> > madstringer at denhac.org
> > On 8/30/2010 8:53 PM, Dan Hess wrote:
> > > So I was talking earlier today with Brimstone (Makers Local 256)
> > about the
> > > psychological aspects of the finances that we at Midsouth Makers have
> > > encountered and it lead me to wondering what others might have for
> > input on
> > > this. I'd like to hear about any sort of "herding cats",
> > "controlling the
> > > masses", and psychological warfare type of situations, events,
> > changes, or
> > > anything else that other spaces have encountered. And hopefully after
> > > reading our spaces encounter with it you'll grasp the idea a little
> > better
> > > of what I mean.
> > > Let me preface this with we are still very much so in our infancy
> > stage and
> > > are learning by leaps and bounds every day.
> > > In the very beginning, once we knew a financial goal that we would
> > need to
> > > hit in order to move into a place, we decided we would need to
> > > some form of collections from the people showing up. I would assume
> > that
> > > almost every space hits that exact same point. Well we figured out
> > that we
> > > had X number of people coming, and we needed Y amount, so if we
> > collected Z
> > > from each of those people we would get there in a matter of 3 or 4
> > months.
> > > So we decided we would see about starting some form of collection.
> > What we
> > > did was make the mistake of terming that collection as "dues" which
> > gave it
> > > a mandatory/required or else type of connotation. We paid the price
> > as a
> > > result of that too. We've spent quite a bit of time trying to
> > recover from
> > > the people that no longer show up likely due to that for the most
> > part. The
> > > response that we essentially got was that we were attempting to sell a
> > > product that (and charge for it) that did not exist yet, and so
> > people who
> > > were not seeing the vision felt no need to pitch in. What we've
> > resorted to
> > > now is doing away with the term "dues" until there is an actual
> > mandatory
> > > aspect to it. Now we have our set goal and are requesting
> > pledges/donations
> > > in order to accomplish our goal, and that is exactly how we word it
> > to all
> > > our regulars. Any time we give an update on our goal we usually
> > word it as
> > > such "we are X number of donations of $45 away from our goal." This
> > > overall had a reasonable result on our group working very nice as
> > motivation
> > > and encouragement all without discouraging them or enticing them to
> > run away
> > > as a result of a mandatory monthly payment.
> > > We've had a few other little things here and there, and I'm
> > personally very
> > > much so interested in other psychological concepts of handling the
> > > whether it be finance related or not, but I hope that the above helps
> > > explain the kind of input that I'm curious to hear about.
> > > Thanks,
> > > Daniel
> > > - Copying one is plagiarism, copying many is research.
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > Finance mailing list
> > > Finance at lists.hackerspaces.org
> > > http://lists.hackerspaces.org/mailman/listinfo/finance
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