Seven people gathered to discuss the first four lessons in the amazing Labor Notes "cook book," Secrets of a Successful Organizer.
We spent our first meeting practicing the greatest skills an organizer can master - listening. Participants paired off with a person that they did not know well. They listened and talked with the objective of introducing each other to the group.
Many of us noted how easy it was to read the book. "Secrets" has a global appeal, even though it is written from a workplace-issue perspective. We used Secrets to spur on and ground our talk about organizing. The book was a good resource for helping us identify our strengths as well as the "holes" in our organizing. We saw the need to improve our 1:1 organizing conversations.
We discussed Philadelphia's educational organizing landscape among both "Reformers" and progressives and searched for potentially unifying issues among stakeholders across Philadelphia. We also acknowledged that while we are doing some of the activities suggested, we predict greater success in our organizing if we followed through on all of the book's suggestions. We enjoyed getting to know each other and can't wait to have other people join us.