Design Notes: Community gardens public work day site managment

Below are a few notes triggered by a working bee to stimulate some design thinking. The notes apply for general working bee/site/hui/project management/implementation tasks, not specifically to the working bee itself
  • Delegate a site/bee/project manger/coordinator
    • Front of house/greet/introduce
    • Identifiable (safety vest)
    • Link between groups/people on site (OST butterfly)
    • Knows where people/facilities are: water/first aid kit/toilet/tools/membership forms etc... and what is going on during the bee
    • Ensures everybody finishes on schedule and site is tidy for shared food/time
    • Be aware of constraints time/hands/manpower etc...
  • Send arrivals to site/bee manger/coordinator for briefing/direction/safety drill/muster point etc
  • Visitors/contact record sheet
  • Name badges      
  • Prepare a noticeboard of tasks prior to people arriving
    • Provides visibility of the big picture of the bee to both the workers and the manger
    • Break large tasks down into small achievable tasks; Break large areas into small areas
    • Allow people to chose what type of task they participate in on the basis of the task list (rather than seeking and being told)
  • Get people to mark off their completed tasks, add the task to the board if it was not on the original list
    • Facilitates/feeds back a visual sense of collective achievement
    • Provides a record of the work
    • Shows uncompleted tasks that form the basis for the next bee
    • Helps show tasks that require further planning to fulfil
  • Show start and end times for the bee. Allow people to schedule
  • Ensure you can complete the task you are starting
    • Work within the constraints time/hands/manpower etc...
    • Assist someone to finish their task before requesting they stop and assist you
    • Finish your current task before leaving to start another
      • What is important is the number of tasks completed not how many are started
  • Work to time
    • Aim to have 3/4 of your task completed by half way through the period and completed well before the finish time
    • lots of small completed tasks are preferable to large tasks which go over time
    • Leave plenty of time for tidying up
    • Have everything tidy and the site clean before serving food/beverage
      • Everybody gets to celebrate the work done/completed together, cementing a sense of group/community achievement
  • Designate a location for hand tools\site tools
    • Borrow, use and return. Part of the task/job completion process
  • Signs that answer common infrastructure questions: water/first aid kit/toilet etc...
  • Site map indicating areas/sheds/names etc...
  • Dont allow people to dump materials at the site
    • The site should develop/evolve by design and strategy - Unless required as part of the design implementation or for repair, materials should not be accepted/stored
    • Advertise what materials are required and which are not. Advise where alternative materials can be disposed of/donated
  • An abundance of ad hoc materials leads to an abundance of equally ad hoc projects, with all the associated post project fallout and diversion of effort

  • Devolop good housekeeping (5S


Random notes

Paraphrases, short form stories and original thoughts

"As to methods there may be a million and then some, but principles are few. The person who grasps principles can successfully select their own methods. The person who tries methods, ignoring principles, is sure to have trouble." Adapted from Ralph Waldo Emerson
"Above all else learn to communicate and collaborate"
"Seek to understand and provide not to pursuade"
"A permaculturalist lives by the ethics, a permaculture designer is a permaculturalist who consciously implements the principles"
"An idea is not a design"
"An idea is a response to a perceived need; an interface between subconscious and conscious "
"Design first, plan second"
"State the obvious, so everybody knows the obvious"
"Permawash - Taking anything from history, religion, culture, thoughts in your phking head and saying this is permaculture (design)" Pippi 201005
"Design is part of an implementation feedback loop; Design can be thought of as the problem resolution phase/stage/pattern/process/system"
"She'll be right" a euphemism for "we won't be around when this becomes a problem!"
"She will not be right unless shes done right"