New Formal Role: Ambassador? (Diplomat?)

As Noisebridge needs more and more to deal with The Outside World – e.g. state and city officials, grant funding agencies, and so on – having a consistent voice and vision capable of communicating profitably is becoming a survival imperative.

We have one Treasurer (and/or a head treasurer with many helpers, the receivers of treasurer@nb.net) to deal with the NB treasury.

We have one Secretary (and/or a head secretary with helpers) whose job is to structure internal information. Less-successfully the Secretary has occasionally been used as an API to outside-world communication.

Perhaps it may be time to create an Ambassador role as a way of formalizing and intentionally bottlenecking communication.

Questions:

  • How does the ideal Ambassador behave?
  • How much autonomy in terms of sending out and responding to inquiries should we accord the Ambassador, given that they will in some sense represent the Voice of Noisebridge?
  • Given that this role would serve to create continuity of communication, what kinds of processes would we need to ensure continuity between Ambassadors? (e.g. conserving and categorizing information about our communication partners)
  • Does this person need to be on the Board? (I suggest at minimum Membership; not sure if Board level is necessary.)
  • Can we have multiple Ambassadors and still be successful? (I hope so)
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I’ve been thinking I like the moniker “Diplomat” best.

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Ambassador is not a great title, just because it is often assigned to unpaid intern roles by tons of non-profits (i.e. this Red Cross program). So I feel that people who often get solicited by non-profits will write off anyone with that title.

Not a fan of Diplomat either personally. The primary goal of this position is to have a good public facing role for the organization. So the title needs to convey pretty easily what the sender is trying to represent. Diplomat just makes people think of Foreign Diplomats.

I personally think something like Outreach Officer, Communications Director, Public Relations, etc. would convey the position better.

As a good starting point, it seems like a communications@nb.net alias would be worth having.

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