Net2LA Send Off
As you can see Amy Sample Ward, NetSquared's Global Community Development Manager, is keeping the Net2LA seat warm while the new Organizer search continues. I just wanted to pass along some sage advice I got from Net2 New Orleans Co-Organizer, Damien LaManna:
First, find three organizers to share the load. Every organizer needs to be 100% passionate, but each will only have 1/3 of the responsibility. If one person can't dedicate time to Net2 for a month, there are two others who can pick up the slack. The way this works this in New Orleans:
* Damien handles programming for the evening
* Jessica finds sponsors and arranges the venue
* Andrew MC's the night
Second, be consistent?with meeting times and quality. Net2NO is on the same night with a similar presentation style?announcements, panel, presenter?every month. While they rescheduled their main meeting to avoid competing with the 2008 Presidential Election Night (as Damien said, "why compete with history?), they still held a Happy Hour to get the group together and watch the results. This consistency has allowed them to steadily build an audience. In fact, last month, they never announced a topic (Meetup read "TBD"), and still had over 90 people show up to their meeting.
Third, listen to your community, but call the shots. Net2NO formed a steering community of their Founding Members to help corral group think, and find interesting topics. HOWEVER, the Organizers always make the final decision based on the time and energy they have to spend that month. Don't be discouraged if your attendance wanes. Techies may not enjoy the same topics as NPO staff.
While there are unique challenges to overcome in Los Angeles, there are plenty of nonprofits wanting to further their cause, and a savvy tech community ready to help good doers do more with tech.
Thank you to everyone who attended our Meetups last year. I hope Net2LA finds it's legs in LA soon.