My second visit to Mumbai last week to work with the Swades Foundation was even better than the first in March! Not only I experienced a very warm welcome again, but this time I also could see the results of the first workshop in March elaborated in several aspects. That felt as a reward for the work of Ronald and myself we did with the Swades Foundation team in March.
Facilitator of lively discussions
This time I was less a trainer, but more a facilitator of important discussions during the 3-days workshop with the team of Swades Foundation, consisting of 20 members (cluster managers, field workers, etc.). Again we had lively discussions on choices to be made.
Generating input for improving operations
We took a lot of time to work on contingency of operation. The pace of growth to achieve is ambitious. We have been working on issues like procedures, organizing a feedback loop, getting better control of mobilizing and selection of potential entrepreneurs, mentoring & training of female entrepreneurs and positioning statements. We had discussions both plenary and in small groups. This way, we generated the input necessary to complete documents, schemes and procedures.
Organizational change affects all jobs
At the end of the second day I asked people to discuss the impact of the changes we were about to make. A more formal organization is needed, but this affects all jobs. This resulted in a good discussion about responsibilities and ownership. The team really got aware of the coming changes. I emphasized the importance of keeping the cooperative culture they have in the team.
At the last day again the team was asked to think about their role, taking in mind the scaling up from 100 entrepreneurs now to 4,000 by the end of the fiscal year. This includes 2,500 female farmers in poultry and 1,500 in oyster mushroom cultivation. The final and wonderful conclusion was that the entire team felt confident about plans and targets. Each member confirmed it was do-able!
My personal learnings
The 3-days workshop was really valuable and I personally got very happy to see the change and ambition to make it work. Working with the same people from March has given me better insight in Indian culture and group dynamics. Getting a better mutual understanding but also a more intensive communication.
Looking forward to next steps!