Sunday, December 20, 2009

Network Building - Understanding T/MC

I've written more than 500 article in the past few years, all aimed at one goal of "connecting people who can help, with places, programs and youth, where help will be needed for many years.

I point to articles written by people who are smarter than I am, and who write better than I do. If you read these articles and apply what you are reading to the articles and ideas I'm sharing, you'll see how powerful the ideas we share can be in helping solve some of the complex social issues facing our country.

Here are two articles that I hope will stimulate your thinking.

Managing the 21st Century Organization, by Valdis Krebs

Social Capital, Glue for Sustainability (a slideshare) by Victoria Axelrod, William Becker, and Jenny Ambrozek

In October 2008, Arne Duncan, Secretary of Education, was in Chicago following the beating death of a Chicago teen. He was quote in the newspaper saying

"This is the time to look in our collective mirror and ask whether we like what we see or whether we can do better together." .. Arne Duncan

In the article written by Valdis Krebs, he says "Why not use the power of the network itself to create a solution? Improve the organizational network and then use technology to help people communicate across wide spans of the human network."

The Tutor/Mentor Connection has been connecting people and organizations for more than 16 years, and providing a library of information for people to share the same resources, ideas and their own ideas. We have create maps that anyone can use in their collective work, or their individual efforts, to help build and sustain mentor-rich organizations that constantly learn from the work each other is doing, and constantly expand their impact on the lives of inner city kids.

At Cabrini Connections, we apply this network-building concept directly to our own efforts to help a small group of young people move from 7th grade, through high school, and into college, then jobs and careers. This is a long-term process, which will only be successful as we expand the network of adults who are involved, and committed to this same goal.

Our aim is that when you look at our maps of Chicago, every program that is operating will be using some of these ideas to build their own systems of long-term support for the kids they are working with. When you look at asset maps, showing businesses, faith groups, colleges and hospitals, you'll see a growing number of groups who are providing the resources needed by each of these programs, and Cabrini Connections, to do this work.

This can happen if these organizations and resource providers are applying the ideas we're sharing on this blog.

As you read about networks on this blog, and about knowledge management, innovation, and problem solving, we hope you will include the T/MC in your network, and that you'll also help us find investors and benefactors to stimulate our own role as an intermediary and catalyst for this network building process.

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Thank you.


Jenny Ambrozek said...

Thank you for your kind comments on our "Social Capital: Glue for Sustainability" presentation

Next time I'm looking for a good example of an organization that understands relationship building to create value I'll know where to look.

All the best with your efforts networking tutors and mentors in 2010.

Tutor Mentor Connections said...

Thanks. I hope we can connect and get the attention of more of the leaders who need to be involved in communicating this message.