• Philip J Connolly

Mass Membership: feedback on our scenario planning 

"Once you make up your mind about what you actually want to do in life, you’re just an inch away from success. " R. Buckminster Fuller.

I was thirty before I knew what job I really wanted to do. I was sixty before i knew I might have to make that job. Now that i am near to being sixty-two I know the route. I will have to do it through a self organising resilient community and to do it quickly. There is a lot of people thinking the same way. I know that even though I blog on business strategy very infrequently all my postings are read by business strategists so I think there are many others thinking this way too. Many people with neurodiversity challenges connect with me every day so they too are part of this community. Who else is in, well those that represent the future challenges of disabilities and those breaking taboos for starters; those working on menstruation, bladder control, etc are amongst my new friends. Finally (for now) the newly connected Indians and Africans show that this community is both local and international. So to go back to the quote from Buckminster Fuller, if he is correct how might my team go about going the final inch or 2.54 cm.


This is where you come in. We will become the biggest network for disabled people and those with a long-term health condition because you decided to join us. Whether its you, a member of your family, the people you work for or with you you decided is time to move from managing problems like discrimination to solving them instead. You could sense our vision and knew our time was now. You gave us a gift. A gift of your creativity, time, money or ability to influence others. You liked our ideas for organising and you not only improved them but you helped us to do it. Resilience requires scenario planning and option appraisal.


On membership you liked the option of a time limited offer of free membership giving way to a voluntary subscription after a year. On maintaining our connection with you you liked the idea of forming a staff disability network and then aligning that network with us so we could support you with guidance on policy and good practice and you could support us with numbers. On new categories of membership you liked our family rate and helped us foster resilient communities by promoting our street rate and flats rate whenever we crossed the threshold of majority support. You liked our categories of membership boosting intergenerational contact, the social capital of those not in work and offering a route out of isolation for those that live on their own. You told us what the right language and practice was and we facilitated your access to tools, teaching resilience and your peers.


On branding you liked our keenness to use the colour purple as a shorthand for our identity and aspiration. We are also keen on curating a four note audio logo. Like the inner workings of the "Dance for Parkinsons" classes we will offer each person the affirmation of another. Learning from the success of "men in sheds" we will avoid the trap of being process driven and look to set ourselves outcomes that are within our control as opposed to delivering only on outputs and lobbying government only for the outcomes. We will organise to be agile and responsive and avoid very long-term plans that no longer match the political realities. We will offer ideas but we will test ourselves against the rigour of these ideas being practical and that we too are willing partners in their implementation. We will expect the Government to provide resources but we will not allow them to have a veto on whether we can access these resources or not. We will keep asking and answering the question, "What can we do? and "What are we doing?"


We hope we have convinced you to invest your creativity, time, money or influence in growing the network We need a minimum of 500 people to offer us 5 hours a week for up to two years. We have members already but ask readers to keep joining us and ask us for a "resiliency plan" for you and we ask for your approval to share your contact details with your fellow members in the same constituency. In the next blog I will consider the influence you have and how to bolster it. I will also consider your own options for resilient leadership.


Remember with you we are inching nearer. We are getting nearer, soon we will be with you.


Go to www.disabilityresiliencenetwork.com fill in a free membership form and share with us news of your gift to us.

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