A few thoughts on this:
- The number of leadership roles someone can hold at a single time should be limited
I don’t know what a reasonable number is, but maybe roles could be assigned “weight”, depending on their global importance and a person’s “role weight” would not go over a certain value. E.g. you could have two roles of 0.5 “role weight” each. It would also allow people to “mix & match” different roles of different types, as long as they kept within a limit. If a certain role is very important, it could take up all the “role weight” available to one person.
- New leadership opportunities and pathways should be decided and consulted on by the community involved in that area
…but Mozilla’s staff could definitely be providing guidance and expectations in this respect, since those opportunities and pathways are a part of Mozilla’s mission. On the other hand, the community could form its own requirements and expectations for leadership, according to: " criteria for the role requirements should be validated by the impacted group".
- We should create clear definitions for roles and avoid the generic term “leader”
Maybe each community could list all the activities it’s involved in - and that could lead to a “requirement triage”, where certain activities would be grouped together to provide a template for a (set of) leadership role(s). We do have a bunch of existing lists of that type within our functional areas already, so they could serve as a good starting point.
I would like to suggest “coordinator” (akin to Michal’s “guide”) as a neutral and informative description of the kind of activity I assume we want to encourage Mozillians to participate in for the benefit of everyone involved.
- Leadership responsibility should be held by groups where possible
If a community group is small enough, everyone could be involved in the responsibilities. This would also make smaller communities more resistant to people dropping off and would potentially encourage
- How can we ensure distributed leadership in small communities? (1-5 people).
A community of 1 is not a community. If there’s really nobody else to share and collaborate with, that person could work directly with the key stakeholders on Mozilla’s side. I have a feeling that as staff members, we’ll always have to be ready to serve and help both kinds of contributors - those who thrive in groups and those who prefer to work on their own - and bridge the communication/interaction gaps between them as much as possible, without compromising their contributions and our focus.
- How do we ensure leadership roles are accessible and communicated to everyone?
Could we use a subpage of mozillians.org (or careers.mozilla.org) to present such roles? Or it could just about subscribing to a newsletter, perhaps? The roles could require a mozillians.org profile, by the way. This means an auto-include of Community Participation Guidelines in the requirements for all candidates.
- How do we enable group leadership?
If all the interested/involved people within a community are connecting frequently in a group setting and take decisions together, that could go a long way towards small community longevity. Could we deliver “how to work together as a group” trainings to existing communities? I think this quality may have been left to develop on its own over time, and could have not spread equally across Mozilla as a desirable set of skills.