1. What are the top three issues that you would want the Council to address were you to join the Council?
Recently lot of things are changing in mozilla. Focus areas are changing. It is very important for the Council to create a new communication plan to reach out to every volunteer. The Communication plan should also include mentoring and training for the new activities.
Bonding with grassroot volunteers
Every community is different, every community face different issues. So it is important that all the inputs from these grassroot volunteers should reach the council. As our communication chain is long, the council might miss some important feedback or messages. Thus providing solution on time is not possible. This communication is very important for the future decision making.
Encouragement for experiments
Lot of our volunteers are experimenting with lot of activities. But after a while they lose motivation when they get less support or feel ignored. A small appreciation or proper support can boost the momentum.
2. What is in your view the Mozilla Reps program’s biggest strength and weakness?
Many volunteers are emotionally attached to Mozilla and its mission. Which is our core strength. No matter what volunteers are always trying to help mozilla in any way possible.
Our volunteers can flexible enough to carry out any activity. They are always excited for new experiments and activities.
Community that never sleeps xD
We are always active. Our community has global presence, we are present in almost all the time zones. In short Reps Program is audible to the world 24*7 . This has helped us in our past online campaigns like Net Neutrality, Encryption.
Good networks in different communities
We are connected with lot of other open source communities. It’s good to see these groups working - collaborating together for same/similar mission like ours.
There is communication gap between all the entities in the program (Council, Mentor and mentees). This is affecting the coordination between the three groups.
Our efforts weren’t enough for retention of members
In recent times lot of good reps have left the program. I feel our efforts were not enough to retain them back. Experienced and skilled member leaving is a loss to our program.
Less orientation to the new/upcoming reps
New and upcoming Reps will be the building blocks for our program. They are ones who will be leading things in the future. Proper orientation and training to them is a must. Strong foundation will lead in strong nurturing of the reps. The existing reps should pass on the knowledge and experience to the new generation. As mozilla has a complex ecosystem it will take time for any newcomer to get familiar with the system.
3. Identify something that is currently not working well in the Mozilla Reps program and which you think could be easy to fix?
Need to make most active
Mozilla Reps community is said to be one of the largest community in terms of its members. But unfortunately not everyone is active. Future activities needs involvement of the experienced volunteers.
Volunteers are unable to cope with the change
Most of the volunteers in the community do not contribute to code or any other technical contribution. So it is demotivating for them to continue contributing. Also lot of focus areas are changing, the transition is causing confusion leading to loss of momentum.
The council can work upon few new recognitions. We have the “Reps Of The Month” but it is only awarded to a super active rockstar mozillian and others may or may not be nominated for it. Personal contributions are rarely noticeable so the council could work upon a new models where each and every rep can be appreciated for their contributions.
4. What past achievement as a Rep or Mentor are you most proud of?
Being a part of net neutrality campaign in India as a Rep
Lot of reps actively participated in this campaign. This was a successful campaign because we were able to make our voices reach out to the Government. Eventually they took strong actions by blocking Net neutrality violating service like zero-rating.
Privacy Month Campaign
This campaign was totally a community led initiative. Many global communities participated in it. One of the best example of good coordination and communication between different communities.
Reps volunteering for MozFest
This was the first time where mozilla reps where volunteering for each space at mozfest. Each space wrangler was assigned with few reps, these reps helped them manage the space activities.
5.What are the specific qualities and skills that you have that you think will help you be an effective Council member?
I was part of the engagement team for more than 3 years. We have worked upon many marketing strategies for FSA program, Firefox, Firefox OS, Firefox for Android, Firefox for IOS etc. I have also led few advocacy campaigns for Mozilla. Managed social media account for mozilla. Now I am also volunteering for the facebook experiment team. Program Influence can be increased by redesigning few marketing strategies.
When we had the FSA program mobilising them was one of the important task. Setting up campus program, motivating them to carry out activities. Guide them through various set of activities, training them. When you are dealing with large number of volunteers you come across different mindsets, different ideas, different demands. And this experience has helped me to deal with any situation related to volunteers. Thus handling people, motivating them to carry some activity is easily done.The Mobilizing was then continued in the Firefox OS promotional activities, Campus club, Privacy Advocacy activities etc.
Listening to community members for their thoughts and grievances, making them feel comfortable with the workflow and saying ‘Thankyou’ or ‘you did a great job’ is something I have close experience in. Being the FSA E-Baord I have had my fair chances of improving my skills at this. Well motivated community can be very productive if they are channelized property to the right resources.
6. As a Rep, what do you do to try to encourage inactive Mozillians to be active again?
Not all reps are inactive because they got busy. Most of them are inactive because they were disappointed or demotivated by some circumstances. So I feel before encouraging any inactive rep, we should find answers to the following questions.
*Find out the reasons for them going inactive
*Find out the reasons for their disappointment
*Make them aware of how mozilla and its mission needs them. How each mozillian counts.
*Are they inactive because the project they were contributing to was shut down?
*Do they still have some trust issue ? (After Firefox OS and Connected Devices many volunteers were demotivated. And they stopped contributing)
*Are they unsatisfied with the recognition. Were their efforts not noticed?
Unless and until we don’t address the above questions we won’t be able to find any solution for bringing them back.
Encouragement can be in the form:
*Communicating and regain trust
*New and challenging initiatives that keep the reps involved
7. Which of the three priority projects do you consider the most important? Please motivate your answer.
I think all the 3 are very important. Because all the 3 are interrelated to each other.
Comms: Only few set of Reps are active. New communication strategies might reactivate them. Other communication strategies can help us onboard new reps. Also bringing every rep on the same platform (which is very much needed) can be very well done by a good Comms strategy.
Re-commitment: After reactivating or onboarding new mozillians we can mobilize them to the right projects they want to contribute to. Misplaced talent is a waste of talent. A little help can place a right volunteer to a right task.
Coaching/Leadership: Coaching can help volunteers get aligned with the program goals and effective leadership can help volunteer reach out to those goals. Good coaching can lead to quality contribution and Good leadership can lead to quality community.
8. Which of the two big roles (specific skills based on the 3 priority projects) do you consider to describe you best? Please motivate your answer.
Specialist on communication, strategies and leadership has always been my contribution area. I have worked with the engagement team in the past where I learned how to design a communication plan to reach out to more and more volunteers. I have also worked with the participation team where I learned how to design strategies to increase participation in any project or activity. Few of the community building activities gave me experience in the leadership. Leadership skills helped me to maintain a healthy communities. So this is why I think my previous experience will be a added benefit for the reps program.