1022 – Minutes of the third 3-day session

Minutes of the third 3-day session

During this session, we voted on Proposal 4 authorizing Cheryl be to identify GROW members who plan to attend the 2024 International Women’s Conference in Washington DC and to represent GROW in contacting the IWC to learn about opportunities for GROW to be of some service at the Conference.

We also considered a new Proposal 7 that establishes a working group to identify opportunities for GROW to make changes that would, in the long run, encourage more people to volunteer for Trusted Servant positions.

Results of Voting on Proposal 4 (IWC)

Nine participants voted on the proposal. All of them voted “I agree;” therefore the proposal is adopted as a Group Conscience Decision: GROW authorizes Cheryl B to poll our membership to identify women who are interested in attending the 2024 International Women’s Conference (IWC) in Washington DC and to represent GROW in contacting the IWC to explore opportunities to participate by staffing a booth, either separately or in cooperation with other online AA groups, or volunteering for other service opportunities. She will report her findings in the April 2023 Business Meeting and seek approval for further action.

Discussion of Proposal 7 (Working Group)

Proposal 7: GROW will create a working group to explore the Alternatives to Address Vacancies. The working group will take a closer look at the issues to identify ways in which we can focus on supporting our online AA women’s meeting while hopefully still providing support to individual GROW members.

To accomplish this, we would:

  • keep grow-business active for at least six months,
  • seek volunteers to form a working group that would propose changes to “the way GROW operates,”
  • allow the working group to make specific proposals that would be considered outside of our scheduled business meeting, and offer specific issue areas to be addressed based on comments.

Three people submitted comments on the proposal, all of which were supportive.

Next Steps

There are no more proposals on the table for the October 2022 business meeting. We will continue to discuss Proposal 7 during the fourth 3-day session.

Regards,
danna M
GROW Business Meeting Chair
dmcd.grow@gmail.com

 

 

1022 – Minutes of second 3-day session

Minutes for the second 3-day Session

During the second 3-day session of GROW’s October 2022 business meeting, we voted on three proposals, discussed three proposals, began to consider a discussion document “Alternatives to Address Vacancies.”

Results of Voting

Ten women voted on Proposal 1, which would add a recommendation that the 12th Step Volunteer Listkeeper will send out “12th Step Call” notices within 48 hours after the message was posted on GROW’s mailing list. Nine (90% of those voting) women voted “I agree;” therefore the proposal is approved is adopted a Group Conscience Decision. Group Conscience Decision: Edit the position description for the 12th Step Volunteer Listkeeper to assure that notices of “12th Step Calls” go out to the volunteers within 48 hours that a message is received by GROW.

Eleven women voted on Proposal 2, which recognizes that the Business Meeting Chair works closely with the Webkeeper to assure meeting notes on our website are accurate and timely. All of the women voted “I agree;” therefore the proposal is approved and becomes a Group Conscience Decision. Group Conscience Decision: Amend the position description for the Business Meeting Chair to add working with the Webkeeper to assure meeting materials are posted to the website as soon as possible.

Ten women voted on Proposal 3, which seeks a Trusted Servant volunteer to GROW approve asking for a volunteer from the current Trusted Servants who will receive and forward AA’s quarterly Newsletter Box 4-5-9 and highlight the Calendar Page. Those who voted were unanimous in voting “I agree;” therefore, the proposal is approved and becomes a Group Conscience Decision. Group Conscience Decision: To assist GROW to be better informed about AA as a whole in the case of a vacant GSR post; at the Business Meeting we ask for a TS to volunteer to receive and forward the quarterly AA Newsletter Box 4-5-9 and to highlight the Calendar page as per our Group Conscience October 2018.

Summary of Comments

Three women commented on Proposal 4, which would authorize Cheryl B to identify GROW members who plan to attend the 2024 International Women’s Conference and to act as contact for GROW with the IWC organization to explore ways we could be of service at the conference. All of those who commented enthusiastically supported the proposal.

One participant privately raised the question of why we have nothing going on the 2022 IWC Conference to be held in Dallas, TX in mid-February 2023. Participants are invited to discuss this issue and perhaps follow up with efforts to coordinate the attendance of GROW members at the 2023 IWC. We will vote on this Proposal during the third 3-day session.

Summary of Comments on Proposals 5 and 6

Two women commented on Proposal 5 (Secretary’s Duties), and no one commented on Proposal 6 (Business Meeting Chair’s Duties). Each proposal called for GROW to develop a plan for assuring the duties for each of our three vacancies are performed while the positions are vacant. Both proposals included lists of duties that could be performed by existing Trusted Servants and called for volunteers.

“Alternatives to Address Vacancies”

During the 3-day session, the Chair called for comments on a Discussion document “Alternatives to Address Vacancies” that explored ways to cover the duties of the three current vacancies: GSR, Secretary, and Business Meeting Chair. There was no deadline for comments, however, six participants have commented on how GROW can make changes that respond to those vacancies.

During the third 3-day session, we will vote on Proposal 4 (IWC) and discuss the Discussion document “Alternatives to address Trusted Servant vacancies.”

You can find information about the October 2022 meeting on GROW’s website.

If you would like to participate in the meeting, send your request to our listkeepers. They will add you to the mailing list.

Regards,
danna M
GROW Business Meeting Chair
dmcd.grow@gmail.com

1022 – Summary of Discussion on “Alternatives to address Trusted Servant (TS) vacancies”

Summary of Discussion on “Alternatives to address Trusted Servant (TS) vacancies”

Thus far, seven women have commented on the discussion document. The comments were diverse, touching on many of the ideas presented in the document. Comments can be grouped into six areas.

Specific duties of the Secretary position (& volunteers)

Our listkeepers have volunteered to cover several of the Secretary’s duties. However, others felt that the duties should be distributed more evenly across all Trusted Servants. Here are the duties and the TSs volunteering to cover them:

post form letters, …………………………………………… Sophie & Susan, danna
contact, Trusted Servant issues, ……………………… Sophie & Susan
contact, GROW member issues,
list of emergency phone numbers, …………………… Sophie & Susan, danna (website)
Mini Steering Committee
announcing vacancies monthly………………………… danna
recruiting & reporting
Group Inventory…………………………………………….. Sophie, danna

This assumes that Group Inventory tasks would be divided by week for the one-month exercise. This means that two weeks are covered, but the other two weeks are still orphans.

Frequency of GROW business meetings

The Discussion document suggested that our business meeting schedule could be changed to encourage participation. There was also a suggestion that the business meeting schedule be cancelled, with business matters handled by the Steering Committee on an ad hoc basis using the grow-business mailing list to communicate. One commenter felt that it was acceptable for the meeting schedule to change to no more frequent than quarterly.

Note: In its first year, GROW business was handled ad hoc by the Steering Committee without a mailing list. In 1998, a Group Conscience decision was approved to hold meetings quarterly on a business list. In 2008, a Group Conscience decision changed that schedule to twice a year to coincide with TS terms of office.

The women commenting on this idea rejected cancelling our April and October schedule. Some reported that GROW business and decision-making is superior to other online meetings.

Using grow-business all the time, not just during meetings

The most popular suggestion was to keep grow-business active throughout the year, not just in April and October. Commenters felt it would allow us to address issues more timely.

Commenters did not agree that the full-time business list was an appropriate substitute for regularly scheduled business meetings, confirming that they support the current April and October schedule.

One commenter felt that the full-time grow-business would still need a lead or chairperson to assure the Steering Committee was focused, that proposals go through the process outlined in our Business Meeting Guidelines, and to document discussions, votes, and Group Conscience decisions.

Eliminating Trusted Servant positions

The Discussion document suggested eliminating the “service” positions that are not essential to directly supporting our ongoing email meeting. Almost all commenters rejected this idea. One commenter felt that eliminating roles that are not essential seems like a good idea but that each of us would have a different view of what constitutes “essential.”

The document also suggested that TS positions be eliminated and the duties be transferred to other TS positions. One commenter felt that doing this might make the existing TS positions seem more complex or time-consuming, discouraging volunteers even more.

Suggesting a less radical approach, one commenter felt that discontinuing the services that a vacant TS position provides might make consequences of the vacancy clearer to our members and encourage more people to volunteer.

Recruiting Trusted Servants

Commenters generally felt that, with the changes made in the recruitment process, GROW is doing all it can to encourage volunteering. One commenter suggested that current TSs could personally identify and contact GROW members that are good candidates (a suggestion that was rejected in October 2021). She also thought that we might nominate GROW members to fill positions rather than waiting for them to volunteer.

The Discussion document also suggested changing the order in which vacancies are announced. By this scheme, TS positions that directly support the email meeting would be announced first, and announcements for other positions would be deferred until the most essential positions have been filled. (The Chair muses: what happens if no one volunteers for those essential positions?)

The Chair points out that no one commented on Proposal 6 to cover duties of the business chair. While many of the duties in this position are not easily broken down into discrete activities, there are areas where individuals could be of significant help. This would be particularly important if we decide to keep grow-business active all year and make Group Conscience decisions on an ad hoc basis.

preparing opening documents and sending the emails;………..
working with members on Proposals;………………………… danna
preparing minutes and summaries………………………………………
        (The Chair recommends letting Minutes serve as the only record for the meeting); and
recording and counting votes……………………………………………..

We will continue commenting through the end of this meeting on the ideas presented in the Discussion document.

You can find the Discussion document on our website.

The Chair points out that Proposal 7 has been submitted to create a working group that will follow-through with the issues and, where appropriate, prepare proposals that would accomplish our goals. There have been no comments on the proposal thus far.

This is to encourage you to comment before midnight (your time) on Sunday, October 9.

Regards,
danna M
GROW Business Meeting Chair
dmcd.grow@gmail.com

1022 – Summary of Comments on Proposal 4 (IWC)

Summary of Comments on Proposal 4 (IWC)

Three women commented on Proposal 4, which would authorize Cheryl B to identify GROW members who plan to attend the 2024 International Women’s Conference and to act as contact for GROW with the IWC organization to explore ways we could be of service at the conference. All of those who commented enthusiastically supported the proposal.

1022 – Discussion: Alternatives to Address Trusted Servant Vacancies

Discussion: What are our alternatives for managing GROW activities when Trusted Servant positions remain vacant?

This document is a one-person brainstorm. I have not asked anyone to review it.  Any additional alternatives are welcomed. Thank you in advance for considering and contributing to the topic.

During this business meeting, half of the proposals presented for decision-making arose because no one volunteered for three Trusted Servant positions (GSR, Secretary, Business Chair). During the April 2022 business meeting, three vacant TS positions were never filled (GSR, OIAA Rep, Webkeeper). The GSR position has been vacant since October 2021. The Webkeeper position has been vacant since October 2020, when Cheryl assumed the duties of both Website Administrator and Webkeeper.

GROW has 18 Trusted Servant positions, representing 6% of our membership as of October 1st. No one knows if this is a trend – whether these vacancies will continue to be a problem in the future. But in this particular business cycle, two important positions have not been filled: Secretary and Business Meeting Chair. The Secretary position is more the ‘public face’ of GROW’s support team and the focal point for issues that arise anytime, not just during business meetings. It is hard to imagine how we will conduct Group Consciences without a Business Meeting Chair.

The proposals presented to this meeting addressed the three current vacancies only. Last April, we discussed recruitment issues and took several actions to attract volunteers: moved from the text of position descriptions to brief paragraphs describing TS jobs in the Secretary’s announcements, dedicating a weekly meeting to the topic of service prior to recruitment efforts, and creating a comparison chart comparing duties, workload, and qualifications for all TS positions. We tried, but we didn’t get the results we hoped for. So, now, what do we do?

I’ve attended many f2f AA groups that did not have a GSR, so I guess it boils down to how important it is to our group to have a representative for this AA function (and for the OIAA Rep, since they serve the same purpose).

Is it time to rethink how we staff GROW’s email meeting?

In April, we discussed job-sharing. After studying the idea, our Listkeepers and Greeters concluded that few positions would really benefit from job-sharing. It may be time to revisit that question. But job-sharing would require more, not fewer, volunteers.

Another approach might be to eliminate some Trusted Servant positions and transfer duties to other positions, seeking to continue current practices with fewer people. (As we said at budget time in the Federal government, getting more “bang for the buck.”)

To take it a step further, we might eliminate Trusted Servant positions and the services the positions were designed to fulfill. We offer a lot of support to our members that might be a luxury in times when we can’t get volunteers. Potential positions to eliminate might include those that do not directly support the ongoing email meeting:

  • 12th Step Volunteer Listkeeper
  • Sponsor Listkeeper
  • Temporary Mentor
  • Birthday Listkeeper
  • GSR (only because it appears no one wants to do it)

To take it even further, I’m wondering if the way we’ve done business in the past is written in stone. Do we really need to have business meetings twice a year? Do we need business meetings at all? Has our business meeting process gotten too burdensome for participants? Is chairing the business meeting too much to ask of any individual? Without sincerely committed Trusted Servants, can we really expect to cover duties attached to positions that don’t get filled?

I’m asking you to think about this and to participate in a discussion of our options. As a starting point, I list some possible options below. I sincerely hope that the participants in this meeting have more and better ideas.

Some possible alternatives to the way we handle long-term Trusted Servant vacancies:

  • Establish job-sharing and allow current TSs to perform in more than one position.
  • Dispense with the concept of rotation and allow TSs to serve in the same position in consecutive terms (this is being done this term with little discussion).
  • Revisit the terms of office for all TS positions and shorten the terms to make them more attractive to potential volunteers.
  • Identify critical duties for a vacant position and distribute them to TS positions that are not vacant, continuing to recruit for people to fill the vacant position and assuming that a current TS will volunteer to take on additional duties not related to their job.
  • Assign critical duties for vacant positions to other TSs without waiting for current TSs to volunteer to take them on. Reassign duties to positions that are in related in some way to the duties not being done. Continue to recruit for the vacant position.
  • Delay recruiting for positions that do not directly support the ongoing email meeting until all other TS positions have been filled. Recruit for these ‘service positions’ only when the email meeting is fully staffed.
  • Determine whether a TS position is critical to the ongoing email meeting, regardless of its value in helping alcoholic women who are struggling. If not critical to the meeting, eliminate the service it provides until the position can be filled. Continue to recruit for the vacant position.
  • Determine whether a TS position is critical to the ongoing email meeting, regardless of its value in helping alcoholic women who are struggling. If not critical to the ongoing meeting, eliminate the position and discontinue the service it provides. Stop recruiting for the vacant position.
  • Assess the relative contribution of every Trusted Servant position in supporting our ongoing email meeting and recruit for positions in the order of their contribution to the functioning of the email meeting. Recruit for the most critical positions before opening any other position to volunteers.
  • Discontinue our Business Meetings but keep the grow-business mailing list permanently. When issues arise that need action, have the Steering Committee address them using the business mailing list to communicate. Figure out how to do a group conscience on an as-needed basis.

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We will now discuss this issue.
The discussion is not constrained by the 3-day session limit for Proposals.
However, your prompt attention and comment on the issue will help us make better progress.
We may not have the option to table the discussion until the next business meeting.
Hopefully, the discussion will generate a Proposal that will need to be decided before the mandatory cut-off on the 17th day of the meeting.
I look forward to your comments.
Regards,
danna M.
GROW Business Chair
dmcd9999.grow@gmail.com

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1022 – Minutes of the first 3-day session

Minutes of the first 3-day session

A total of 30 women from GROW have registered to participate in GROW’ssssss October 2022 Business Meeting

Trusted Servant Reports

During the first 3-day session of the October 2022 business meeting, we received the Reports of some Trusted Servants: Secretary, Treasurer, Listkeeper, and Mini Steering Committee.

  • The Secretary’s Report covers our Trusted Servant (TS) positions and listed the Outgoing and Incoming TSs and the complete list of current TSs for October 2022. Three TS positions remain vacant: GSR, Secretary, and Business Meeting Chair.
  • For the six-month period from April thru September, the Treasurer reported $780.67 in donations (including our Prudent Reserve) and $266.00 in expenses paid, leaving a balance of $514.67. That balance will be distributed to GSO ($411.76) and OIAA (102.91).
  • Our Listkeepers report that GROW had 298 members as of 10/1/2022.
  • The Mini Steering Committee did not have to address any issues in the same six-month period.

Proposals

Three proposals were presented for discussion. They included:

  • Proposal 1: 12th Step Volunteer Listkeeper position description. It is proposed that this TS position description be amended to state that that the 12th Step Listkeeper send out “12th Step Call” notices to the volunteers within a 48-hour time period after a share is posted that reveals a member is struggling.
  • Proposal 2: Business Meeting Chair position description. It is proposed that a bullet be added to this TS position description that recognizes the Chair will work closely with the Webkeeper to assure meeting contents are posted timely and accurately to our website.
  • Proposal 3: General Services Representative. It is proposed that meeting participants ask a volunteer among current Trusted Servants to post AA’s Box 4-5-9 newsletter to our mailing list, highlighting the calendar from that newsletter for members.

During this 3-day session, meeting participants discussed the three proposals. As many as seven people commented.

Next Steps

During the second 3-day session, the Chair will provide a summary of the comments, and participants will vote on the three proposals on the table. Three more proposals will be presented for discussion:

  • Proposal 4: 2024 IWC Conference. A member seeks authorization from GROW to identify women who may want to attend the 2024 International Women’s Conference to be held in Washington DC. She would also be GROW’s representative to the IWC, seeking information on possible opportunities for us to support the conference.
  • Proposal 5: Secretary’s Duties. This proposal seeks guidance from meeting participants on how to assure that the duties for this TS position are carried out despite the position being vacant.
  • Proposal 6: Business Meeting Chair’s Duties. This proposal seeks guidance from meeting participants on how to assure that the duties for this TS position are carried out despite the position being vacant.

A Discussion document will also be presented for discussion that considers possible ways to approach ongoing Trusted Servant vacancies. It includes a range of options from having current TSs volunteer to cover those duties to eliminating the positions and the services they provide to GROW. Participants will discuss the issues and our options.

Regards,
danna M
GROW Business Meeting Chair
dmcd.grow@gmail.com

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1022 – Proposal 7: Working Group

Proposal 7: GROW will create a working group to address the Alternatives to Address Vacancies. The working group will take a closer look at the issues to identify ways in which we can focus on supporting our online AA women’s meeting while hopefully still providing support to individual GROW members.

Rationale: Much of our October 2022 business meeting has been devoted to covering duties that will not be performed due to vacancies the GSR, Secretary, and Business Meeting Chair Trusted Servant positions. The subject is broad and complex, and we are not able to find solutions and propose those solutions in the timeframe of the October business meeting. With the Secretary and Chair positions vacant, it will be difficult to address filling and rotating Trusted Servant positions and set up and execute the April 2023 business meeting. In order that GROW makes progress on the issues, the Chair is recommending that a working group be established to come up with some viable solutions.

To support effective action, this proposal includes several measures to facilitate communication and maximum participation in the working group. These include:

  • keep grow-business active for at least six months (until the next scheduled business meeting), during which all current Trusted Servants would be subscribed automatically,
  • issue a call to current Trusted Servants for volunteers to form a working group that would identify the priorities and major issues and propose alternatives for changes to “the way GROW operates,”
  • invite interested GROW members who are not Trusted Servants to subscribe to the business-grow mailing list to participate in the working group,
  • temporarily suspend some GROW Business Guidelines to allow the working group to make specific proposals that would be discussed and voted on grow-business outside of our scheduled business meeting process (while still adhering to the existing Business Meeting Guidelines process for proposals – reaching Group Conscience decisions), and
  • offer specific issue areas to be addressed based on the comments made to date.

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Summary of Comments

Nine women commented on the proposal. All of the comments supported the Working Group, and several of them included a commitment to join the Working Group.

Results of Voting

Eight women voted “I agree” on Proposal 7, and no one voted “I disagree.” Therefore, the proposal is adopted as a Group Conscience Decision.

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1022 – Proposal 6: Business Meeting Chair’s Duties

Proposal 6: GROW will develop a plan for covering the duties of the Business Meeting Chair while that position is vacant.

Rationale: As the group is aware, we repeatedly struggle to fill a small number of key TS positions. This time, the Business Meeting Chair position is vacant, and some of her duties are critical to GROW’s performance. While the position has a very light workload most of the time, it is a demanding job during business meetings and in the weeks preceding the business meeting.

The Business Meeting Chair’s main duties include:

  • moderating the business meeting and keeping attention focused on the business at hand;
  • monitoring and reporting on all discussions;
  • tracking, recording, and reporting the results of all votes;
  • assuring clarity for proposals and motions, assuring they are stated clearly for participants;
  • setting the meeting agenda;
  • providing minutes for the business meeting and summaries for GROW membership after each 3-day session;
  • working closely with the Secretary and Webkeeper;
  • participating in the “Mini Steering Committee” and reporting their activities to the business meeting;
  • being knowledgeable about AA’s Traditions and Concepts; and
  • understanding GROW’s Group Conscience Guidelines and AA Guidelines on the Group Conscience.

The Chair’s duties are focused on facilitating group decision-making and fall within a two-month period twice a year in March-April and September-October (except for Mini Steering Committee efforts that arise between meetings). In the month preceding a business meeting, the Chair reminds and, if necessary, supports the Secretary in announcing Trusted Servant vacancies. She also sends out invitations to the GROW membership each week before the meeting, including outlining the Agenda as it develops.

In the week before the meeting begins, the Chair will likely be busy preparing documents that open the meeting, assuring that TS reports are formatted properly for email. She may also provide the documents to the Webkeeper so they can be posted timely on our website.

During the business meeting, she must review all emails to the grow-business mailing list and take appropriate action, which might include revising proposals being discussed. On the first day of every 3-day session, she presents a new set of documents (minutes, revised proposals, summaries of discussions, and results of voting).

I have prepared two documents in Microsoft Word. One contains notes on each phase of the process for proposals, from introduction to final decisions based on participants’ votes. The second contains templates and samples of documents, including proposals, summaries, and announcements of results. I plan to put these on the website in the position description and make them available for download.

There are probably several ways to see that these duties are covered by our current Trusted Servants; but we need to have a plan for fulfilling the Business Chair’s role if no one has volunteered by early March 2023. It’s assumed that we will continue to announce the vacancy every month until it is filled or the next business meeting come along.

Unfortunately, these duties are not as discreet as those of the Secretary. I couldn’t break them down into separate areas that individuals could cover, although that might be possible to some degree. For example:

  • preparing opening documents and sending the emails;
  • working with members on Proposals;
  • preparing minutes and summaries; and
  • recording and counting votes.

This would require, I think, that one person be responsible for coordinating everyone, making sure that tasks are done within 3-day session process, and being the contact point for the activities.

Fortunately, working with the Webkeeper will not be a significant issues since I am now the Webkeeper. I can copy emails, format them, and post them on our website without having to rely on the ‘team’ to provide it to me – as long as they get the needed documents out timely.
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We will now have 3 days to discuss this Proposal.

Please click “Reply to All” to post your comments on this Proposal.
Be sure your response is addressed to: grow-business@oso-aa.org.
The comment period closes at midnight (your time) on Thursday, October 6th.

I look forward to your comments.

Regards,
danna M
GROW Business Chair
dmcd9999@gmail.com

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1022 – Proposal 5: Secretary’s Duties

Proposal 5: The GROW Steering Committee will develop a plan for assuring the Secretary’s duties are performed while the position is vacant.

Rationale: As the group is aware we repeatedly struggle to fill a small number of key TS positions. This time, the Secretary position is vacant, and some of her duties are critical to GROW’s performance.

The Secretary is responsible for these key duties:

  • sending out two form letters each month (FYI Letter, GROW Mail List Guidelines);
  • acting as the contact for Trusted Servant positions, whether it be when filling vacancies or when an existing Trusted Servant is struggling to handle her duties;
  • maintaining a list of emergency contact numbers for all Trusted Servants;
  • with the Mini Steering Committee, addresses questions/concerns/issues from any GROW member and privately and discreetly informing members who stray from the guidelines;
  • announcing Trusted Servant position vacancies, confirming nominees, and announcing new Trusted Servants;
  • conducting a biennial Group Inventory (in even-numbered years), posting the questions to GROW (3 per week) and posting each week’s responses to the group.

There are probably several ways to see that these duties are covered by our current Trusted Servants; but we need to have a plan for fulfilling the Secretary’s role while the position is vacant. I’m assuming we will continue to announce the vacancy every month until it is filled or the next business meeting come along.

One way to do this would be for individuals to assume one of the following four discrete and straight-forward activities:

  • posting the form letters,
  • being contact for Trusted Servant issues,
  • maintaining a list of emergency phone numbers,
  • being a member of the Mini Steering Committee (we’ve had little to do for over a year).
  • Being a contact for Trusted Servants would be the most difficult of these, particularly in the month preceding the April 2023 business meeting. The activity may be a good candidate for a job-sharing approach if we can work out how to do that.

The Group Inventory should be conducted in 2020. It plays out over a month-long period. Three questions are posted each week, and then the responses are published to the mailing list (and the website). One person could agree to do the whole inventory, or we could separate it into the weekly segments, creating a need for four people and one to coordinate the overall effort.

You may have different and better ideas about how to accomplish this, but GROW needs those duties to be fulfilled whether there is a person in the position or not.
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We will now have 3 days to discuss this Proposal.
Please click “Reply to All” to post your comments on this Proposal.
Be sure your response is addressed to: grow-business@oso-aa.org.
The comment period closes at midnight (your time) on Thursday, October 6th.

I look forward to your comments.

Regards,
danna M
GROW Business Chair
dmcd9999@gmail.com

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1022 – Proposal 4: 2024 IWC

Proposal 4: GROW authorizes Cheryl B to poll our membership to identify women who are interested in attending the 2024 International Women’s Conference (IWC) in Washington DC and to represent GROW in contacting the IWC to explore opportunities to participate by staffing a booth, either separately or in cooperation with other online AA groups, or volunteering for other service opportunities. She will report her findings in the April 2023 Business Meeting and seek approval for further action.

Rationale: Members of GROW attending the 60th IWC in February 2024 together would strengthen relationships between our members. It would give us an opportunity to share about things not directly related to our sobriety, allowing members to get to know one another on a level not possible in our online meetings. It would offer an opportunity to be of service as a group, supporting one another while having fun and introducing other AA’s to GROW.

Cheryl B would volunteer to be the contact person with the IWC committee. She would keep GROW members that wish to participate informed of dates/deadlines for registration, hotel reservations and details regarding a service position.

When we have information on GROW members attending the IWC and an understanding of how GROW could participate in the Conference, Cheryl will present a proposal on GROW’s role and possible funding needs to the April 2023 GROW Business Meeting.


Summary of Comments

Three women commented on Proposal 4, which would authorize Cheryl B to identify GROW members who plan to attend the 2024 International Women’s Conference and to act as contact for GROW with the IWC organization to explore ways we could be of service at the conference. All of those who commented enthusiastically supported the proposal.

We will vote on this proposal in the third 3-day session.

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1022 – Proposal 3: GSR Duties

Proposal 3: To assist GROW to be better informed about AA as a whole in the case of a vacant GSR post; at the Business Meeting we ask for a TS to volunteer to receive and forward the quarterly AA Newsletter Box 4-5-9 and to highlight the Calendar page as per our Group Conscience October 2018. 

Rationale: As the group are aware we repeatedly struggle to fill a small number of key TS positions. One part of the GSR role in helping keep our group informed about AA as a whole is the forwarding of Box 4-5-9. We voted on this becoming part of the GSR role four years ago yet have been without an active GSR for much of this time.Follow the link to read our original discussion to receive the newsletter: http://g-r-o-w.com/1018-proposal-11-gsr-459-calendar/

As a measure to help us as a group be better informed would the group consider allowing a TS to volunteer to carry out this bullet point until the next Business Meeting.

Rationale
Summary of Comments
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1022 – Proposal 2: Business Meeting Chair Position Description

Proposal 2: Amend the position description for the Business Meeting Chair to add working with the Webkeeper to assure meeting materials are posted to the website as soon as possible.

Rationale: Business Meeting Chairs have always worked with the Webkeeper, providing documents that include anything related to Proposals, Trusted Servant reports, and lists of Group Conscience Decisions. However, this important function is not addressed in the current position description.

Recommended Language:

Amend the tenth bullet in the Business Meeting Chair position description:

  • Work closely with other trusted servants, especially the Secretary and Webkeeper.

Add a new twelfth bullet as shown below:

  • Work closely with the Webkeeper to assure meeting documents are posted to the website as quickly as possible. Give the Webkeeper documents that include:
    • all reports and proposals, Minutes, and Summary documents
    • Summaries for each phase for Proposals (discussion, voting, and final outcome (is or is not adopted as a Group Conscience Decision).

Rationale
Summary of Comments
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Summary of Comments

Three participants made four comments on this proposal that adds recognition of the need for the Business Chair to work closely with the Webkeeper to see that the information about the business meeting is posted accurately and timely. All of the comments supported the proposal, agreeing that it is important that the position description should be accurate and thorough. One woman asked if it might not be wise to include a more specific timeframe than “as quickly as possible.” Another responded that the current situation does not call for a deadline and that if it should become necessary, we can address it at that time.

During the second 3-day session, we will vote on this proposal.
PLEASE DO NOT VOTE UNTIL THE “CALL FOR VOTES” YOU RECEIVE THE “CALL FOR VOTES” MESSAGE.

Also during the second 3-day session, we will consider three more proposals:

  • Proposal 4: 2024 International Women’s Conference
  • Proposal 5: Secretary’s Duties
  • Proposal 6: Business Meeting Chair’s Duties

I will also send out a discussion document addressing alternatives for addressing GROW’s continuing vacancies in Trusted Servant positions. You will be asked to review the document and provide your opinions and ideas on possible options for handling Trusted Servant vacancies in the longer term.

You can review all documents that have been published to the Business Meeting on GROW’s website at Business Meetings – GROW (g-r-o-w.com). Remember that the password to enter the Members’ section is sobertodayhow2484.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.
Regards,

danna M
GROW Business Meeting Chair
dmcd.growmail@gmail.com

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1022 – Proposal 1: 12th Step Volunteer Listkeeper Position Description

Proposal 1: Edit the position description for the 12th Step Volunteer Listkeeper to assure that notices of “12th Step Calls” go out to the volunteers within 48 hours that a message is received by GROW.

Rationale: GROW did not set a standard for the amount of time that passes before the Listkeeper sends out a notice to the women who’ve volunteered to offer their support to members who are struggling. Since the position was established, the amount of time for notices (subject: “12th Step Call”) to go to the volunteers has varied significantly. This proposal would establish formally GROW’s expectation these notices be sent as soon as possible after the message they’re responding to was sent to the mailing list.

Recommended Language: Edit the seventh bullet in the 12th Step Volunteer Listkeeper’s position description as shown below:

  • Forwards those letters to the 12th Step CommitteeVolunteers within 48 hours after the subject message appeared in GROW.

Rationale
Summary of Comments


Summary of Comments

Seven participants commented on the proposal to amend the 12th Step Volunteer Listkeeper’s [Listkeeper] position description. The change would add the expectation that the Listkeeper send the “12th Step Call” notices within 48 hours after the message was posted on GROW’s mailing list.

All of the participants supported the proposal. One thought it would be reasonable to extend the 48-hour timeframe to 72 hours. Another suggested that the 12th Step Volunteers should be asked to respond within 12 hours of receiving the notice. The Chair pointed out that we do not ask the volunteers to report back that they’ve responded and there is no way for the Listkeeper to check it, pointing out that we trust the volunteers to follow-through timely. Another participant felt that the 48-hour expectation be a suggestion rather than a requirement and that we should not specify a timeframe for the volunteers. She pointed to the danger of micromanaging our Trusted Servants, reminding us that we assume our Trusted Servants do their jobs to the best of their ability.

During the second 3-day session, we will vote on this proposal.
PLEASE DO NOT VOTE UNTIL THE “CALL FOR VOTES” YOU RECEIVE THE “CALL FOR VOTES” MESSAGE.

Also during the second 3-day session, we will consider three more proposals:

  • Proposal 4: 2024 International Women’s Conference
  • Proposal 5: Secretary’s Duties
  • Proposal 6: Business Meeting Chair’s Duties

I will also send out a discussion document addressing alternatives for addressing GROW’s continuing vacancies in Trusted Servant positions. You will be asked to review the document and provide your opinions and ideas on possible options for handling Trusted Servant vacancies in the longer term.

You can review all documents that have been published to the Business Meeting on GROW’s website at Business Meetings – GROW (g-r-o-w.com). Remember that the password to enter the Members’ section is sobertodayhow2484.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

Regards,
danna M
GROW Business Meeting Chair
dmcd.growmail@gmail.com

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1022 – Mini Steering Committee Report

Mini Steering Committee Activities

(from April 1, 2022 until October 1, 2022)

The Mini Steering Committee includes the Business Meeting Chair, the Secretary, and the Listkeepers. It was created to handle issues that arise between meetings that do not rise to the level of the whole Steering Committee.

As in the last report, nothing came up during this period. The Mini committee did not to meet.

Respectfully,
danna M
Business Meeting Chair
dmcd.grow@gmail.com

1022 – Listkeepers Report

Listkeepers’ Report – October 2022

 

This is our report for the October 2022 GROW Business Meeting. Listkeeping is much less complicated than I imagined before I became a Listkeeper. We work in a team of 4, two Greeters and two Listkeepers. A pair comprising one Greeter and one Listkeeper serve together one week on, one week off.

Our main function is to promptly serve new ladies enquiring about joining GROW. We do this with the Greeters. There is a very simple-to-use website that allows us to subscribe a new lady or help with unsubscribing. We can also help ladies select the Digest version or help with other email/sharing related queries.

As of 29th September 2022, we have 298 ladies’ email addresses subscribed and receiving the GROW shares. I estimate approximately 20-30 individual shares on topic are sent to GROW each week. We have 18 serving GROW in Trusted Servant roles (with three vacant or about to be vacant – Biz Chair, Secretary & GSR).

We had a busy time recently with slightly higher than previous with enquiries about joining. Many have joined but equally quite a few seemed to realise it wasn’t for them and didn’t remain. Usually, we’d only seen that kind of busy-ness around holiday periods, particularly the Christmas/New Year time. There are many more online options accessible nowadays than even three years ago, but my personal view is that there will always be those for whom an email AA meeting and an email AA group is just what’s needed. Certainly true for myself and has been for the past six years.

Currently the Listkeepers’ role is also about subscribing members to the separate Business Meeting List in readiness for the October 1st opening of this bi-annual Business Meeting, and we currently have a total of 25 ladies signed up. It’s lovely to know there are several newer members amongst that list this time – welcome!

Listkeeping is a really good example of how GROW members have supported each other as they’ve learned the ropes. Susan P is serving as the other Listkeeper and had previously done a term as a Greeter and so had an inside view of how the role worked. I, on the other hand, hadn’t had the experience of being a Greeter, but my team when I became Listkeeper included two who had experience and another newbie to it like me. It meant the two with experience could walk us through everything gently the first few weeks until we were confident to take off the training wheels.

Our current team is working well and we’ve had no difficulties. We’ve had some holiday times and personal circumstances occur that have easily and willingly been covered by one of the team as needed. It’s a pleasure to serve with them.

Any questions about Listkeeping or membership we’re happy to try to answer.

Thank you to those present and past who’ve served as Listkeepers and Greeters. And especially those who helped outline the roles and the tasks.

Sophie F & Susan P
Listkeepers to GROW

1022 – Treasurers Report

Treasurer’s Report – October 2022

(for the period from 4/1/2022 thru 9/29/2022)

Paypal donations:

April $143.16
May $5.00
June $20.88
July $14.08
Aug $105.07
Sept $98.35
Total $386.54

Ally donations/interest:

April $50.07
May $0.02
June $0.01
July $0.01
Aug $0.01
Sept $100.01
Total $272.13

Deposits + Prudent Reserve:

Prudent Reserve $122.00
Paypal $386.54
Ally $272.13
Total $780.67

Bills Paid:

Dean Collins $144
Prudent Reserve $122
Total $266

Balance:

Donations: $ 780.67
Bills Paid $-266.00
Balance $ 514.67

Distributions:

GSO (80% of Balance) $411.76
OIAA (20% of Balance) $102.91

Respectfully submitted,
Cheryl Baughman
GROW Treasurer

1022 – Secretary’s Report (Trusted Servants)

Secretary’s Report (Trusted Servants) – October 2022

Outgoing Trusted Servants

Incoming Trusted Servants

Trusted Servants – October 2022

  • 12 Step Volunteer Listkeeper (10/22 – 4/23): Julie K
  • Birthday Listkeeper (10/22 – 4/23): Susie J
  • Sponsor Listkeeper (10/22 – 4/23): Lynn H

Trusted Servants who make up the Steering Committee:

  • Business Meeting Chair (10/22-10/24): VACANT
  • GSR (10/22-10/23): VACANT
  • GVR (10/22-10/23): Amy N
  • Greeter (10/22 – 10/23): Diane L
  • Greeter (4/22 – 4/23): De W
  • Listkeeper (4/22 – 4/23): Sophie R
  • Listkeeper Alternate (4/22 – 4/23): Susan P
  • OIAA Rep (10/22 – 10/23): Theresa B
  • Secretary (10/22-10/23): VACANT
  • Temporary Mentor (4/22 – 4/23): Becky L
  • Treasurer (10/22-10/23): Cheryl B
  • Website Administrator (10/22-10/27): Cheryl D
  • Webkeeper (10/22-10/27): Danna M.
  • Topic Archivist (10/22-10/23): Pat S
  • Weekly Leader Listkeeper (4/22 – 4/23): Emily M
  • Immediate Past Business Meeting Chair: Danna M.
  • Immediate Past GSR: VACANT
  • Immediate Past OIAA Rep: VACANT
  • Immediate Past Secretary: Michele R.

1022 – Business Meeting Agenda

***IMPORTANT NOTE: Please DO NOT respond to this message.
Additional individual emails will be coming, to which you can respond.

=============================================

GROW BUSINESS MEETING AGENDA: October 2022

=============================================

– Trusted Servant (TS) Positions – Incoming & Outgoing TS identified (posted separately)
– Semi-Annual Reports: GSR, OIAA, Treasurer, Listkeeper, Secretary (posted separately)
– Business Items (each will be posted separately to facilitate discussion and voting).

We will discuss these proposals during the Business Meeting. If you have an item that you would like to have addressed, or if I have not accurately represented an item that you recommended, please email me privately and I will add it to the Agenda.

Proposals

  • Proposal 1: 12th Step Volunteer Listkeeper Position Description
  • Proposal 2: Business Meeting Chair Position Description
  • Proposal 3: GSR Duties
  • Proposal 4: 2024 International Women’s Conference
  • Proposal 5: Secretary Duties

Regards,
danna M.
GROW Business Chair
dmcd.grow@gmail.com

1022 – AA’s Perspective on the Group Conscience

AA’s Perspective on the Group Conscience

 

The following is an excerpt from the pamphlet, “The AA Group:”

How does an informed group conscience differ from a group opinion or a majority vote? The group conscience is the collective conscience of the group membership and thus represents substantial unanimity on an issue before definitive action is taken. This is achieved by the group members through the sharing of full information, individual points of view, and practice of A.A. principles.

To be fully informed requires a willingness to listen to minority opinions with an open mind.

On sensitive issues, the group works slowly – discouraging formal motions until a clear sense of its collective view emerges.

Placing principles before personalities, the membership is wary of dominant opinions. Its voice is heard when a well-informed group arrives at a decision. The result rests on more than a “Yes” or “No” count – precisely because it is the spiritual expression of the group conscience.

The term “informed group conscience” implies that pertinent information has been studied and all views have been heard before the group votes.

The difference between a group conscience and a majority vote, or group opinion, is that one or more of the elements described above is missing.

A.A. experience has taught that:

Tradition 2: For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority – a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants, they do not govern.

Tradition 4: With respect to its own affairs, each A.A. group should be responsible to no other authority than its own conscience. But when its plans concern the welfare of neighboring groups also, those groups ought to be consulted. And no group, regional committee, or individual should ever take any action that might greatly affect A.A. as a whole without conferring with the trustees of the Alcoholic Foundation.* On such issues our common welfare is paramount.

*Now called The General Service Board of A.A. Inc.

Regards,
danna M.
GROW Business Chair
dmcd.grow@gmail.com

1022 – Business Meeting Guidelines

Business Meeting Guidelines

 

The following are the GROW Guidelines for conducting business:

  1. Proposals to be considered during GROW business meetings should include the following:
    1. A clear brief statement that summarizes the proposal;
    2. A rationale that describes why the group conscience decision is needed; and
    3. Specific language to be presented for discussion and voting in the business meeting (including, as appropriate, language for a job description, form letter, or GROW policy or guideline). This language may need to be modified by the Trusted Servant responsible for the area to reflect the group’s discussions.
    4. Before submitting a proposal, meeting participants are encouraged to consult with the Business Chair, Secretary, or Steering Committee members to formulate their proposals if they need help. They should also review past Group Conscience Decisions related to the proposal.
  2. We allow a minimum of three days for discussion, more when warranted.
  3. At the end of the three-day discussion period, the Chair calls for a vote. Three days are allowed for voting, which can be done either publicly on the list, or privately by sending votes to the Chair. The Chair counts the votes.
  4. The voting is done by: I agree or I disagree.
  5. At the end of the voting period, the Chair announces the results of the vote. The group holds to a 2/3 majority to pass or fail any group conscience decision.
  6. Following the announcement of results, the Chair will ask if the minority wants three days to discuss their minority opinion.
    1. If yes, then three days of discussion will begin. At the end of the three days of discussion, the Chair will ask if anyone who originally voted for the Proposal (a majority voter) has been persuaded by this discussion to change her opinion. If yes, the Chair then calls for another 3-day voting period. The outcome of the second vote is the determining vote. As in the first vote, the 2/3 majority vote will be observed. If no majority voters have been persuaded to change their opinion, there will not be another vote.
    2. If the minority does not want three days to express their opinion, there will be no further discussion and there will not be another vote.
  7. At the end of the voting period, the Business Chair announces the final results of the vote.
  8. Note: If any item on the agenda has not reached a 2/3 majority vote by the 17th day of the business meeting, the item is tabled and held over to the next scheduled business meeting.
  9. 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:
    1. Assure that TS-B is aware of and allowed to respond to the complaints and, if appropriate, to propose remedial actions to correct problems.
    2. 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;
    3. Establish a timeframe and deadline for remedial actions to be taken and documented;
    4. 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;
    5. The full Steering Committee will decide whether TS-B can remain in the position or should be removed;
    6. 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.

Respectfully,
danna M.
GROW Business Chair
dmcd.grow@gmail. com

1022 – Business Meeting Welcome

Welcome to the Business Meeting

 

Welcome to the October 2022 Business Meeting of Grateful Recovering Online Women (GROW). I am danna, a recovering alcoholic, and your Business Chair for this meeting. Thank you for participating!

This is a closed meeting, open only to members of GROW, for the discussion of business as it relates to our group. Our business meetings run in four-day segments and last no more than 29 days.

I will post each Agenda item, one by one, in separate emails, **asking that you respond to each accordingly.** This makes it easier to “tally” the responses and suggestions to each item. We will have three-day periods during which we’ll discuss each Agenda item. This will allow all members – regardless of work schedules, time zones, etc. – to participate. At the beginning of the 4th day, I will post the results/consensus of our discussions or votes.

Before we begin, let’s have a moment of silence to reflect on why we are here, followed by the Serenity Prayer.

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference. Amen.

In this Business Meeting, let us be guided by The Twelve Traditions:

  1. Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon A.A. unity.
  2. For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority — a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.
  3. The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.
  4. Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or A.A. as a whole.
  5. Each group has but one primary purpose—to carry its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.
  6. An A.A. group ought never endorse, finance or lend the A.A. name to any related facility or outside enterprise, lest problems of money, property and prestige divert us from our primary purpose.
  7. Every A.A. group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.
  8. Alcoholics Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional, but our service centers may employ special workers.
  9. A., as such, ought never be organized; but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.
  10. Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the A.A. name ought never be drawn into public controversy.
  11. Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio and films.
  12. Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.

Let us all keep in mind our Unity of Service statement from the Grapevine of September 1998:

“Unity seldom means that we all agree on everything. Nor is unity served by setting aside our concerns and conforming to the majority opinion (or the vocal minority) . . . Unity is best achieved by a full hearing of all points of view . . . time for all of those involved to step back from emotional responses . . . as well as careful consideration and prayer for that which will best serve the group or AA as a whole.”

Thank you for being here and for your dedication to GROW.

Regards,
danna M.
GROW Business Chair
dmcd.grow@gmail.com

PS: Please note that I use a different email address for this meeting. If you send your comments or votes to my regular GROW email, I may not see them.