Sorry for the delay in answering your very interesting question. I'll list some bullet points below.
. We had a common vision
• We took risks
• Our offer was concrete
• We knew each other and had worked together
• We invested time and money
• Structures followed function
• We practice within what we preach for the others
• We went for the low hanging fruits
• We sold our services, not depending on any donor
• We diversified our sources of income
• We were clear on what we would not do
• We had an great trust capital
Would other founding members wish to comment, add, substract?
- We started with basic equipment: with our own laptops from our kitchen tables, using freely available commuincation tools -- and still our office is basic but feels 'home' - and our secretarial costs remain (almost) flat while our turnover keeps growing.
- We had self confidence that we could do it as a team in which all of us would offer our specific skills, experience, time: only as a team we could keep going...
Meble, from the top of the head here are somethings I felt are important:
=> We had a high level of trust and a common vision.
=> Although the intent was to be a virtual organization some face to face encounters are essential on a regular basis to reinforce relationships.
=> As a team, agree a few ground rules about commitments to one another. Though we have a common vision, sometimes different priorities on tasks pull us apart.
=> Remember SALT applies to our work together too :-)
=> Don't try to control everything, let the broadening community have a say.
=> Some people will be full time and others part time. Work out how to keep everyone up to speed with how things are changing.
=> Don't procrastinate - get into action, and review frequently to learn from everything we do.
Thank you for the notes written above - I think its important for all of us as we shape different country chapters to keep these reflections in mind, being clear on what we need to do and working from strengths, seems to be a running theme -
I also, like what you say Geoff as well, ( by the way, nice to hear from you, dont think I have ever met or talked with you before), - about reinforcing relationships on a face to face basis and reviewing for learning purposes.