Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Day 10: Meetings

Having worked in Latin America before, I am accustomed to having people arrive late to meetings, but working at CJM has been a whole new experience. On Sunday, we had scheduled an important meeting for today in which I was going to summarize their decisions and give a little structure to the new and improved cooperative. One of the most important people never showed up. He didn’t even call to let us know that he would not be joining us. We continued with the meeting, but no one wanted to get into too much detail until we had the other member present. During the meeting, I shared with the team a checklist to help identify the necessary objectives that needed to be accomplished for them to successfully transition into the new cooperative. I have been very conscious to offer direction without doing the work for them. In another month, I will not be with CJM, so it’s critical that they go through this process, understand the changes, and of course feel comfortable with them.

I’ve also noticed that many of the collaborators in CJM have multiple jobs, but I have no idea how they are able to keep them. While in the US, most workers are expected to be at work most of the time, many of the Hondurans are doing numerous other projects besides their “primary job.” It’s certainly common in Latin America for people to have jobs on the side to supplement one’s income, but this seems to be a whole other level.

Joel Montgomery

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