Saturday, May 03, 2008

Small is the New Big

In a quick response to Tim's latest blog post:

Tim, with respect for you, I disagree. I really want to agree. I really want to believe change is on the horizon. But, it’s not.

To be even more honest, my compassion is fatigued. I’m still waiting for that apology call from the BOD after the Eric Miller fiasco. Did you get your call yet? I know, it is never going to happen. And really, does anyone believe the ED resigned of her own accord? If that is true, then we really do lack leadership.

Tim, It’s not a battleship, in my opinion. That is too modern a reference. Rather, it is an old-timey, rusted bicycle that has been given a new coat of paint, right over the rust. Then, they added one of them new-fangled battery powered lights to the front. “See how pretty it is, children?” There is nothing new here, with the exception of the location change. This is not even the first time an online forum has been tried and failed for the NSN. What is going on?

The Marketplace solution is already in reach, has been for years with the clear knowledge of the last two Chairs, with zero out of pocket expense from the BOD. Don’t see that happening, do we? Saying collaboration is desired is smoke screen, as I have experienced it.

Now, instead of taking the money that is already on the table, we’re supposed to do benefit concerts for the NSN? Sigh.

The solutions for the NSN are:

1. Allow it to die and resurrect Phoenix-like with a new mission, a new look, a new name, new energy. Nothing says “we mean to change” like letting something, well, change.

2. The new organization must work with existing organizations in true collaboration, reaching out to heal the many wounded that have been left in the wake of the NSN’s path over the last few years. The current economy also demands collaboration.

3. The new organization must be de-centralized. Set Godin calls it, “Small is the New Big.” Regional offices in Chicago, Boston, Phoenix the current office in Tennessee (for example) will allow for a fast moving, modern organization that can reclaim the “Mother of All Art Forms” mantle that storytelling should have. The new ED can then choose to work out of any of those offices. How powerful an incentive that will be!

4. If there is not going to be a resurrection, then there needs to be competition. That will be an economic hit, too. However, right now, you can have your national storytelling in any flavor you want as long as it’s 1970 Julep. Maybe, ultimately, that is the problem.

It's time for me to just stop talking about this. Your mileage may vary. Shoot the messenger. Not valid where prohibited by law. I may be wrong. User assumes all risks.

The official blog for K. Sean Buvala, storyteller and storytelling coach.

1 comment:

  1. As complimentary as my original posting was, and I am sincere in my appreciation for recent actions, I'm not predicting how the story ends.

    A battleship turns slowly. We've yet to see whether this behemoth will run aground, plow into an iceberg and sink, or run out of fuel and drift. I'm simply observing is a (long overdue) change in course.

    As for the forum... this is the first time that the Board has invited such direct conversation. The two previous forums on Storynet were created as an afterthought, with no sense on how or why to use them, and no support from the staff or Board. The latest version had more organizational support, but not enough to sustain it. At least this newest incarnation has a direct and pointed purpose. We'll see if the membership responds.