From Zero to XERO

So Wednesday was Bearsden as usual and working with my folks to adapt to their changing circumstances. However I also joined an online meeting in the early afternoon from Community Land Scotland who are doing a gender audit of their members. It’s mainly looking at gender split on panels discussing land matters but also gender make-up of community organisations’ boards and staff. It is funded by International Land Coalition. It’s about having real data rather than anecdotes on the subject. I’m fairly feminist and reckon I have some idea of the issues but it is interesting to hear the data being gathered and discuss possibly policy changes. Apparently by having male company secretaries in both Action Porty and Portobello Central we are unusual! 

I drove to my folks and back. Staying over wasn’t an option as Mr Jennifer Elliot, my long-suffering husband, is away with work for three days, so all the home logistics he does are falling to me. Turns out he does at lot of stuff! Who knew! He and I are out to see ‘Elbow’ at Usher Hall tomorrow night. 

At least in the car as I sweltered my way back to Edinburgh (thermometer saying 29 centigrade!) I had some thinking time. The membership discussions in Porty Central are throwing up data protection and GDPR matters. These are important and not ‘easy’ . We’ll work our way through them. The realisation struck me however that if I was back at the beginning of the set up of Bellfield systems again the one thing I’d do differently is start with a CRM. That might be a bit too jargony for many of you. It stands for ”Customer Relationship Management’. It’s essentially a contact database. I’ve always used it in my sales career but never yet in my community buildings life. CRM is quite a big system to set up, I suspect. I don’t know the right one to go with. We’ll probably want a free or very low cost one to start with. One that integrates with Xero would be crucial. Any ideas or suggestions out there? Anyone done this before and willing to advise? 

Lastly I’m going to do a wee plug for Action Porty’s on going ‘Porty 2025’ consultation. A really good event was held on 24th Aug in Bellfield to kick off the consultation process. Next we’ll be looking for people to host conversations on topics they care about. There will be orientation meetings with the big Heart Talk Porty events taking place in November. It is not an insignificant undertaking by Action Porty and the community. There was a really good turn out and lots of positivity at the in person event but also feed back that not everyone was ready for indoor, in person meetings yet. Or they simply couldn’t do in person meetings yet for logistical reasons like childcare. To solve that Action Porty are holding an online kick off ”Porty 2025′ session next Tuesday .See you there?

Jennifer’s blog #75

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