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Start Sparkling! (ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧

Welcome! If you're reading this, it means you're about to join the Django Girls Support Team. YAAAAAAAAAAAY!

If you feel like this introduction is not complete (and it probably isn't), don't feel embarrassed to ask questions and improve this guide. There is no such thing like a stupid question, and you will be helping the next person who reads it.

What is Django Girls Support Team?

Django Girls Support Team is a group of people who support local organizers and Awesomeness Ambassador in organizing the local Django Girls events. Support Team maintains Django Girls resources and website, develops sources of income for the Django Girls Foundation, and supports daily operations of the organization.

Support Team's role evolved with time: at the beginning, it was a group of people who shaped the way we put processes in place to support sustainability of Django Girls. Today Support Team makes sure Django Girls community grows and supports Awesomeness Ambassador in their responsibilities.

You can read more about how the Support Team works, what we do, and how we add people in the About the Support Team section.

How we work

When we started the Support Team, there was no structure in our team or the way we work. Back then it worked for us, but since we hired Awesomeness Ambassador, things slowly started to change.

We're currently changing our structure so that everyone in the Support Team has a specific role or area or project they take care of. You can find a list of current roles here.

Well-being

Do you remember when on planes they say that you should first put your oxygen mask, and then help others? We believe in the same rule. Burnout is real, and self care is more important than anything else. We're all in this for the long run, so make sure to prioritize your free time, relax and hobbies.

To make sure it's easier for every member of the team to take care of their well-being, we've decided to introduce terms: each member of the team is appointed for 6 months only. After 6 months expires, each member is asked if they want to serve on the team for another period of 6 months. Everybody is welcomed to stay, but they need to make that clear with another opt-in. This way we give everyone a chance to re-evaluate their commitments without feeling guilty about it.

In addition to that, each member also takes a specific role or project they're responsible for, so they not feel guilty about all the other things that needs to get done but they're not responsible for.

What do we do

There is a serval recurring tasks we take care of:

1. Staying on top of hello@djangogirls.org

Now mostly handled by Awesomeness Ambassador

This is our main recurring task. Our goal is to reply to every email that comes to this address in a couple of days maximum.

Of course, we don't reply to spam and random unrelated emails.

Read more on how we handle emails.

2. Setting up new events

Now mostly handled by Awesomeness Ambassador

There is an established process of creating new Django Girls workshops.

Read more about the detailed process setting up a new event here.

3. Making sure that planned events are happening :)

Now mostly handled by Awesomeness Ambassador

This require checking out our calendar of events regularly and following up with organizers to make sure they stay on track. This is mainly to offer help to them: sometimes they're just stuck on making some decision and they need a little push.

4. Replying to questions from organizers

Now mostly handled by Awesomeness Ambassador

Questions and requests from organizers come from everywhere: email, Slack, Github and else. Our goal is to make sure things run as smoothly as possible for them.

5. Working on resources - tutorial, organizer's manual, tools, etc.

If we see that Django Girls community needs something, we do our best to make that happen. Either by doing it on our own, or asking for help.

This includes:

  • working on new things
  • reviewing and merging pull requests
  • looking for volunteers

6. Website maintenance

The Django Girls support team is the one with access to commit to the website. Our job includes:

  • building new features for the website, or finding volunteers for it
  • reviewing and merging pull requests
  • creating issues (documenting that something is broken is as important as fixing it! don't feel bad about doing it if you don't have the time to fix)
  • finding ways to automate ALL THE THINGS.

7. Strategizing for the future

We think about the way Django Girls should grow in the future, and which direction we should go to.

This includes:

  • coming up with new ideas, convincing the team that this make sense for us
  • asking the community for feedback
  • collecting the feedback, planning actions
  • making things happen
  • if something doesn't work, it's also our job to kill an idea.

8. Meeting every month on Hangouts

Every month we have a private Hangout where we discuss current tasks, issues and problems. We try to make decision about difficult problems that arised during the last month, and see how we can resolve them. We also plan what steps needs to be taken to solve it and who is a person responsible for it.

Preferably, everyone in the team attend the meeting. It's not always possible, and in this case we try to record the meeting.

Before the meeting we write down an agenda and send it to django-girls-organizers mailing list. During the meeting we take notes in the same file. After the meeting we send notes back to the mailing list.

You can find all historic meeting notes in Google Drive, folder called Meetings.

9. Document processes

It's important for us that there are always at least two (or more!) people who know how to do certain things. Ideally, we want to have everything documented, so everyone feels like they can do anything.

IMPORTANT: If you need to ask another team member for something, it means it should be documented. Do it!

10. Find new ways to put more emoji and sparkles into our lifes

Duh!

Division of labour

There is no clear division of labour: if you feel like doing something, tell people about it (Slack! email!), mark it on Trello and do it.

The "tell people about it" bit is important. Don't skip this step.

Another policy: if you commit to something, but for any (any!) reason you feel like you won't be able to do it, just tell us. You have 100% rights to have other things going on in your life and we will completely understand. But please, tell us! This way someone else can pick it up and you stop feeling bad about not doing something. Everybody wins!

How do we keep track

We keep track of who does what on Trello.

Read more about tools.

Communication

Ok, so this is another really important thing. Here is how we handle the communication:

1. Real time -- Slack

We've got a private Slack channel for more real time discussions and kind of just hanging out. We discuss things that would require long emails, or immediate response. It's also a support group: we talk about our daily lives and things that suck or are awesome. Ania fixes Ola's headache, we recommend nail polish to each other or have serious talks about sexism.

2. Less real time -- email

If you want to say something important that should reach everyone, write it on email and send to hello@. If you want to include a long document in the email, or needs us to review something, don't put it in email. Put it in a Google Drive doc, and send a link.

Technicalities

hello@djangogirls.org is an email that automatically forwards every email to each of the Support Team members. On every communication (reply, new email), you always cc hello@djangogirls.org. This way everyone has their separate inbox, manager their own "read/unread/archived" emails, and also sees if emails has been reply to or not.

If someone replies to you, but doesn't cc hello@djangogirls.org, even though the previous conversation was handled with hello@, then first forward it to hello@djangogirls.org, then reply to it with hello@ in CC again.

If someone sends you an email, but not to hello@djangogirls.org, and you feel like it should be handled by all of us or we should know about it, simply forward it to hello@djangogirls.org.

You can use your own email (or your @djangogirls.org email) to reply and write all messages. We don't send anything out of hello@djangogirls.org. But always, always keep hello@djangogirls.org in CC.

Essential reading

About Us
Communication guidelines
Mailing lists
Tools
How we handle emails
Deploy new city