We did it! The Equity members of Treehouse Village took a leap of faith, worked together, and consented to purchase not just a unit, but a specific home. We now know which building we’ll be living in and who some of our immediate neighbours will be. We can start to imagine what we’ll see when we look out our kitchen windows. Who will be across the common green from us? We can imagine our walk from the Common House to our home. Who will we encounter along the way? We can imagine the view from our living rooms. Will we see the morning sun or the setting sun?
The process of getting from “unspecified unit” to “specific home” was not without stress, but it was actually fairly smooth, due in large part to the advance preparation planned and coordinated by our General Circle. Huge amounts of information were made available and explained in Full Circle gatherings; small group meet-ups were scheduled to encourage communication among groups who were interested in the same size units, and a cleverly designed spreadsheet allowed us to keep track of who was interested in what unit and even watch as some households changed their stated preferences. And because there was so much information spread out in different places, the “Everything You Need for Home Selections” document put it all at our fingertips.
In planning the selection process, General Circle formed a policy and procedure based on Sociocratic principles and role selection, but very much adapted to suit the specific needs of our organization. They incorporated the concept of equity seniority (which is not part of the Sociocratic procedure, but is specified in our Shareholders Agreement) as the final arbiter if a selection conflict could not be resolved by discussions. They also asked us to set aside a big chunk of time for the selection process in order to have time and space if there was a need for families to talk among themselves or for private discussions between households. Having, in essence, all the time in the world made for a much more relaxed day than we might have had if we added time pressure on top of everything else.
That we have made selections and each consented to purchasing a specific home in Treehouse Village is a big step, and it has been written, but not in stone! That is, the Home Selections Policy includes processes for how a household might change their selection to a different home from the list of available homes, how they might switch with another household, and, of course, how new Equity members will select their homes.