[hackerspaces] How do you define YOUR hackerspace

Edward L Platt elplatt at i3detroit.com
Tue May 10 18:03:14 CEST 2011

My favorite high school teacher had a sign on his wall that said "The best
teachers do not push, but rather grease the path".  In my experience, the
same applies to leading/managing a hackerspace.  The most effective leaders
I know tap the passion and interests of the members, and help channel it
into constructive directions and away from destructive ones.

Of course part of that is helping to inspire people with a vision, but the
flipside is knowing when to step aside when a vision doesn't resonate with
the membership, or adjust the vision accordingly.

Edward L. Platt
i3 Detroit: i3detroit.com
Cell: 248.320.5061

On Tue, May 10, 2011 at 11:44 AM, Jordan Miller <jrdnmlr at gmail.com> wrote:

> Leadership is certainly non-trivial, and nowhere is it taught very
> effectively that I've seen in basic education. For an enlightening video on
> what has been proven to work and not work, watch this:
> http://ecorner.stanford.edu/authorMaterialInfo.html?mid=2564
> A lot of it sounds like common sense, but some of the more subtle points
> especially I think are very commonly missed. The best leaders I've worked
> with have an unflappable, calm, cool, collected disposition and are deeply
> aware of their responsibility to provide for and nurture those they try to
> lead.
> And I think a lot of this applies very directly to hackerspaces and other
> organizations trying to unify diverse independent awesome people around a
> common set of explicit goals.
> Even if your goal is to not provide too much structure, it always helps to
> be clear about it.
> Jordan
> > From: Far McKon <farmc... at gmail.com>
> > Date: May 9, 9:59 am
> > Subject: How do you define YOUR hackerspace
> > To: HackerSpaces
> >
> >
> >> At revspace, this has never been explicitly discussed. I myself had some
> ideas
> >> when I started the whole thing, but as time progressed i have had to
> accept
> >> that these might not necessarily be universal among our members.
> >
> > Yeah,  this situation has put me in a tough spot.   The members of my
> > hackerspace have very different wants and needs than I do.  I spent
> > about 18 months founding the organization, and really trying to
> > members engaged and excited about projects I thought were important.
> > After that I burnt out, and largely left the space. The group
> > continues at their own pace which is OK and good to see, but it's
> > nothing like the vision of the space I had, and it's of little
> > interest to me.
> >
> > As the founder of the organization, It's really annoying to me because
> > of the mixed feelings that causes. I'm glad it's a success by it's own
> > measure, but it's so far off from what I wanted, that I'm leaving the
> > group*.   This leaves me in the position of having very little
> > interest in what they are doing. I'm slowly dis-engaging, and I'm
> > probably going to start a new hackerspace.
> >
> > So  if you are a founder be careful about communicating your vision,
> > and picking your collaborators. If you have a vision, you need to make
> > sure people are on board and understand it. Lest you find your
> > ???space is going in a totally different direction than you are.
> >
> > hack on,
> > - Far McKon
> >
> > *  I'm also frustrated that I get very little respect for the work I
> > did starting the group, but from what I hear this is the case in
> > nearly all democratic organizations, and a totally different topic.
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