2020 – Group Conscience Decisions
- Edit Monthly Listkeeper Message and Greeter Letter #2 to address the problem of shares that bounce to the listkeepers because they are addressed to more recipients than GROW. Further edit Greeter Letter #2 for clarity and brevity.
Rationale: “Too many recipients” bounces require listkeepers to take several actions. Shares that bounce are delayed from reaching GROW. Some members do not resend, even after being notified by the listkeeper.
For more information on this Group Conscience Decision, please refer to Proposal 4 from the April 2020 business meeting.
Monthly Listkeeper’s Message
Listkeeper’s Address: email@example.com
(Use this address to change your subscription, or to unsubscribe, resubscribe or ask questions about GROW-related email problems).
Send shares to the List use this address: firstname.lastname@example.org
(Use this address for all your shares or posts of any sort to the regular list. Address your share to ONLY the email@example.com address. If another address is included (even if in the ‘Cc or ‘Bcc field) the email will bounce). The list is set up to accept messages that are addressed to Grow only. The individual(s) you send messages in addition to GROW will probably receive the message; however, the Grow list will not.
NOTE: Please do not post subscription change requests to GROW because they are too easily overlooked.
To access the member’s section, you’ll need the following password:
The GROW Website provides members with all of the information listed in this email, plus business meeting updates, and an archive section. Check the Website for what is happening in GROW.
Each member has a password protected personal webpage where she can make changes to her account, such as:
-vacation (disable mail delivery)
-change her account from regular mail to digest or visa versa
If you lose your password, you can retrieve it here:
Scroll down the page to the lower part, under the blue bar titled “Password Retrieval.” Click on “remind” and your password will immediately be sent to the email address you use for GROW.
If you do not feel comfortable making your own changes, please address all such requests to the listkeeper’s email box, which is: firstname.lastname@example.org
Greeter Letter #2
Welcome to GROW! This is one of two emails you will receive from me with the information you need to start participating in our meeting right away. You might want to save these for future reference.
Sharing with the Group
Address your email to email@example.com your post will be sent to all members.
- Do not add any other addresses to the email or it will bounce. This includes addresses in the ‘Cc or ‘Bcc address fields.
Address your share to ONLY the firstname.lastname@example.org address. If another address is included (even if in the ‘Cc or ‘Bcc field) the email will bounce). The list is set up to accept messages that are addressed to Grow only. The individual(s) you send messages in addition to GROW will probably receive the message; however, the Grow list will not.
Add email@example.com to your Address Book to ensure GROW emails don’t go to your SPAM folder.
Replying to a Post
- Do not use the “Reply to All” option when you respond privately to another member’s post to GROW, as your personal message will also be directed to the GROW list and it will bounce to the Listkeepers.
- For those using phones and tablets, be aware that the default reply option is often “Reply to All.” Please double-check.
The volume of mail through the GROW list can be overwhelming. If you experience this, you might find it very helpful to choose one or more of the following:
- Create a separate email address to reduce the confusion of mixing GROW mail with your other email. Email the Listkeepers at firstname.lastname@example.org your new address. As an FYI, AOL and Yahoo addresses have been problematic for some members with the GROW list.
- If you use an existing email for GROW, you might create folders for your GROW email; filters can also be set up to direct GROW mail into the GROW folder.
- Request the Digest Version (a file containing the day’s posts in a single email) by contacting the Listkeepers at email@example.com.
A new meeting topic is sent to everyone on the list each Sunday and we share throughout the week. On topic and Off topic shares are welcome.
- Off topic posts should be appropriate for an AA meeting. Please note in your subject line if your share is Off topic (Off Topic: … )
- On topic posts are your shares on the weekly meeting topic. Please note in your subject line if your share is On topic (On Topic: … )
- Please do not type in all CAPS; this is considered to be yelling.
Web Site and Password
Visit the GROW web site for more information. The URL for GROW is: http://www.g-r-o-w.com. For the members only section you’ll need the password: sobertodayhow2484
If you have questions not answered by our website information, please write to me and I’ll be sure to answer them or send your questions to someone who can.
I hope Grateful Recovering Online Women is helpful to you in your journey and growth in sobriety.
[ Greeter Name ]
Grateful Recovering Online Women
- GROW adopts the following policy for addressing non-performance in a Trusted Servant position.
There have been several instances in the past where a Trusted Servant did not fulfill all the duties outlined in her position description.
While this may have created problems, Trusted Servants who were aware of the problem did not have a formal process for bringing the problem to the attention of the Steering Committee, and their complaint was never raised. Therefore, no action was taken to correct the problem. In one instance, the issue was raised with some Trusted Servants, but there was no process for allowing the Trusted Servant to improve her performance or for making a decision on whether the Trusted Servant should be removed. This proposal provides a formal process that will make it easier to raise such problems to the Steering Committee, to allow the Trusted Servant to correct performance, and to remove the Trusted Servant if performance does not improve.
For more information about this Group Conscience Decision, please refer to Proposal 6 from the April 2020 business meeting.
Recommended Language: The following statement will be added as #9 to the Business Meeting Guidelines.
When a Trusted Servant (TS-A) feels that another Trusted Servant (TS-B) is not meeting the requirements of her position description, TS-A will take her issues to the small Steering Committee (made up of the Business Chair, Secretary, and Listkeepers) for consideration. She should not engage with or confront TS-B. The small Steering Committee can choose to bring the issue to the full Steering Committee.
The review of TS-B’s performance should be based only on the duties outlined in the position description. If it is found that the complaint is based on different personal working styles, preferences, or infrequent mistakes – and TS-B is otherwise meeting the requirements of her job description, the complaint will be dismissed without informing or involving TS-B. If it is established that one or more of the duties assigned to TS-B is not being met, the small Steering Committee will:
- Assure that TS-B is aware of and allowed to respond to the complaints and, if appropriate, to propose remedial actions to correct problems.
- If TS-B does not propose remedial actions, the small Steering Committee will establish appropriate remedial actions that TS-B can take to correct the problems;
- Establish a timeframe and deadline for remedial actions to be taken and documented;
- If the small Steering Committee has not already elevated the issue to the full Steering Committee, they will inform the larger Steering Committee of the findings, remedial actions, and timeframe;
- The full Steering Committee will decide whether TS-B can remain in the position or should be removed;
- If the Steering Committee decides that TS-B should be removed from the position, they will inform her in writing of their decision. The Secretary will deliver the documented decision to TS-B and call for volunteers to fill the position to the end of the current term.
- In the Weekly Leader Listkeeper’s job description, revise the existing bullet that mentions the monthly Tradition posting to make it clear that the tradition corresponding to the month will be posted twice each month, and the WLL will invite members to share on that Tradition.
- Since we decided to devote the first meeting each month to the appropriate Step, posting and discussion of the Tradition has not happened. The tradition meeting has not been posted in over 6 months. It has been lost. When we discussed creating a Step meeting, there was a lot of discussion about whether it should be just the Step or the Step and Tradition. It was never the intent of the participants in the business meeting to drop the Traditions from our meetings.
- Currently, these are the relevant bullets in the WLL job description:
- Allocate the first meeting of each month to the corresponding Step by identifying the Step as the topic next to the date on the volunteer lead request message.
- Post monthly Step and Tradition discussion topics to correspond with the month.
- The existing bullet in the Weekly Leader Listkeeper’s job description is not clear and confuses the Step Meeting with the way it was done before that meeting was created. The recommended change clarifies GROW’s expectations for assuring the Tradition is highlighted each month.
For more information about this Group Conscience Decision, please refer to Proposal 3 from the October 2020 business meeting.
Recommended Language: Replace the existing bullet (“Post monthly Step and Tradition discussion topics to correspond with the month.”) with the following: “At the beginning and middle of each month, post the corresponding Tradition and invite members to share on that topic anytime during the month.”
- Add text of common duties as (shown at the end of this proposal) to the “New Trusted Servant Letter.”
Rationale: There is no mention anywhere of the common duties that have developed from time and issues arising. Further, not all job descriptions contain a reference or link to the Common Duties. The welcome letter informs the new TS where they can find the job description, but unless they are curious and investigate the site, the common duties can be overlooked. I for one have found answers to many questions and a tried and true guideline in that piece of literature and would like to see it brought up to the awareness of the incoming Trusted Servant. It is as simple as adding it to the bottom of the letter already being sent out to new trusted servants.
For more information about this Group Conscience Decision, please refer to Proposal 4 from the October 2020 business meeting.
Dear [ Name of New Trusted Servant ],
Thank you for volunteering for the position of [ Trusted Servant Position ].
You are replacing [name of past trusted servant] in this position. She will send you any up-to-date lists and/or letter templates you will need to fulfill your duties. She will also mentor you as you transition into your new job. Her email address is [email address of past trusted servant]. If you have not heard from her, we encourage you to contact her now.
Please review your job description immediately. Each job description has been established by group conscience. If your job requires making periodic announcements to the group, please do so as outlined in your job description. Letters/announcements are also a matter of group conscience, developed to ensure a consistent message to all GROW members. Other than including your own name and contact information where appropriate, please do not change the text of the message.
If you have not yet received information from the outgoing [ Trusted Servant Position ], you can access your job description and any letter templates needed for your job on the GROW website.
Trusted Servant job descriptions are described here.
List of Trusted Servant letter templates are here.
Sometimes a job can feel a little scary. If you have *any* questions, please ask. Along with your mentor, the Steering Committee is here to answer questions and support you in your service to GROW. As GROW Secretary, I am the primary contact for trusted servants. You are also welcome to email any one of the Steering Committee members listed at the end of this email.
If you find yourself unable to fulfill your obligations, temporarily or otherwise, please let me or another Steering Committee member know immediately. We will ensure that your tasks are carried out in your absence.
Again, thank you for your service to GROW. Service work is important to individual recovery, and it is essential to the well-being of our group. We hope you find serving GROW to be a rewarding experience.
Trusted Servant Common Duties
The following describes duties that are common expectations for all Trusted Servants.
- Must be a member of Business List
- Smooth and uninterrupted volunteer service to GROW depends upon your ability to carry out your commitments. If a Trusted Servant finds that she cannot meet all the duties listed in her Job Description, she will inform the Secretary and/or Business Meeting Chair that she is unable to fulfill her responsibilities. Working with the Trusted Servant and the Steering Committee, the Secretary and/or Business Chair will then seek alternatives for assuring all duties are covered (including securing a temporary back-up or advertising the position on the main list). If a member of the Steering Committee is concerned that not all items in a job description are being met, she may bring her concern to Secretary and/or Business Meeting Chair, who will work with the Trusted Servant to assure their duties are covered.
- Must be able to reply to business and steering committee email within 48 hours. If unable to do so, should inform the steering committee in advance, or in the case of a computer related problem, make every effort to telephone another group member who can let the Steering Committee know.
- Lack of response to business, steering committee, or direct personal email by another trusted servant for a period of seven consecutive days will be reason for a temporary replacement chosen by the steering committee.
- Lack of response to business, steering committee, or direct personal email by another trusted servant for a period of fourteen consecutive days will be reason for temporary replacement by steering committee until a permanent replacement can be chosen by the next business meeting.
- Provide successor with all necessary information, including job guidelines and letter templates, and serve as a mentor for a period of time to ensure continuity of service.
- Be able to cut, copy, paste, and save to a folder.
Expand GROW’s statements about using URLs in message to allow links to AA meetings on Zoom.
Rationale: With the pandemic, AA zoom meetings are taking place all over the world. They have quickly become an essential tool for many in recovery. Because our ESH is vital to AA meetings and our sobriety, sharing the Zoom ID and password (or the URL link) would be appropriate in these uncertain times.
For more information about this Group Conscience Decision, please refer to Proposal 5 from the October 2020 business meeting.
In Weekly Format Letter, “Topic for the week” section:
[ Introduce the Topic of the Week – Remember that we do not include URLs to sites outside GROW except links to the AA, Grapevine, and GROW websites, and AA meetings on Zoom. ]
In GROW Mail List Guidelines (5th bullet):
We do not send attachments, chain letters, solicitations, virus alerts or announcements of non A.A. functions. We do not include URLs to sites outside GROW except links to the AA, Grapevine, and GROW websites, and AA meetings on Zoom.
- Change the reference to “URLs” in the Weekly Lead Format letter and the GROW Mail List Guidelines to “links.”
In discussing whether to allow links to AA meetings on Zoom, participants talked about the security issues that GROW members have experienced in the past when messages contained links to websites outside GROW or AA. To address that, in April 2019, the business meeting approved a Group Conscience decision to add a statement about not using URLs in the Topic section of the Weekly Lead Format letter and in the GROW Mail List Guidelines. The prohibition on URLs did not include the GROW website or AA websites.
Our current discussion highlighted the point that the risk to GROW members does not result from the use of URLs in messages but from links based on those URLs. A member can type in a URL without linking to the questionable source. Then members can simply copy and paste the URL into their web browser without exposing the mailing list to viruses or malware.
This proposal addresses the distinction between using URLs alone and creating links from those URLs to an outside source.
For more information about this Group Conscience Decision, please refer to Proposal 6 from the October 2020 business meeting.
In the Topic section of the Weekly Lead Format letter, change “URLs” to “links” and include examples to help weekly leaders understand the difference.
“[Introduce the Topic of the Week – Remember that we do not include links to sites outside GROW except links to the AA, Grapevine, and GROW websites.]
You may include URLs (e.g., http://www.g-r-o-w.com – no link – or http://www.aa.org/ – linked), but do not create the link that would automatically take the reader to that URL address. Some programs automatically create links when a URL is entered, so you will need to remove the link. If you need help with this, please contact a GROW Trusted Servant.”
In the fifth bullet of the GROW Mail List Guidelines, change “URLs” to “links” and add a brief message about how to get help if you do not know how to prevent automatic links.
“We do not send attachments, chain letters, solicitations, virus alerts or announcements of non A.A. functions. We do not include links to sites outside GROW except links to the AA, Grapevine, and GROW websites. You can use URLs (e.g., http://www.aa.org/), but do not create a link that would automatically take the reader to that URL address. Some programs create links automatically, so if you need help with this, please contact a GROW Trusted Servant.”