General Priorities

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Please see our strategic planning page instead of this one. This page will be left here for historical purposes. -- Mkille 00:05, 20 April 2013 (UTC)


This is document compares all the program planning sheets and was previously maintained by the Optimization and Priorities group. It is reviewed and approved by the Free Geek Community Council. It should assist us in deciding which projects to push forward as we expand, and which to cut back on if we need to contract.

The Impact/Effort Grid
This is a tool that we use to help us prioritize possible projects. There are nine cells arranged like a tic tac toe game. The higher the expected net positive impact of the project, the higher it appears on the grid. The higher the effort (usually cost in staff hours) the further to the right it appears. The highest priorities will be the things that appear up and to the left, and the lowest priorities will be the things that appear down and to the right.
At the current time, the only items included in the impact/effort grid are programs that would expand Free Geek's activities. That is, the things we are already doing are not included here. (See sublist "D" below.)
Infinite Resources List
The infiniite resources list takes the items from the impact/effort grid and arranges them into one long list, from highest priority to lowest. The higher something is on the list the more likely we've carefully examined it and compared it to the items surrounding it. The lower the item is on the list, the more likely its exact position should be take with a grain of salt or two. It is called the "infiniite resources list" because we assume that there is enough time and money to do everything on the list (something we know not to be true).
At the current time, we have not put anything onto this list, but we plan to do so at our next meeting.
There are several sublists. Each item from the infinite resources list appears only on one sublist. See the notes in the sublist section to see how the items are categorized.

Impact/Effort Grid

(Inside in each box, the order means nothing.)

Low Effort Medium Effort High Effort
High Impact
Medium Impact
Low Impact

(X)=Already done, or actively doing

Infinite Resources List

This is the list of things we'd do if we had infinite resources to do them with; that is, everything we might want to do. Each of these items is assigned a standing committee. It is the responsibility of the standing committee to review the program planning sheet for completeness. Some items may need to be passed to another committee for completion.

  1. Fundraising -- Outreach
  2. Grantwriting -- Outreach
  3. Media Outreach -- Outreach
  4. System Administration -- Technocrats
  5. Move to a new building -- Outreach
  6. Coders -- Technocrats
  7. GAP committee?

(X) indicates we are already doing this

  1. Adoption -- Knowledge Bees (X)
  2. Build -- Reuse (X)
  3. Recycling -- Action (X)
  4. Receiving -- Action (X)
  5. Front Desk -- Outreach (X)
  6. Thrift Store -- Reuse (X)
  7. Advanced Testing -- Reuse (X)
  8. Facilities Maintenance -- Action (X)
  9. Nonprofit Apprenticeships -- Knowledge Bees (X)
  10. Education -- Knowledge Bees (X)
  11. Alt build -- Reuse (X - macs and servers)
  12. Corporate Donation w/ vehicle -- Reuse (X)
  13. Movable Storage -- Action (X)
  14. Taking over office space in the South -- C7 (X)
  15. Printers -- Reuse (X)
  16. Online Sales -- Reuse (X)
  17. Laptops (X) committee?
  18. Prebuild (X) committee?
  19. Hardware Grants (X) committee?
  20. Volunteer Internships (X) committee?
  21. ISP (X) committee?
  22. Volunteer Pickups -- Action
  23. Wholesale Program (X) committee?
  24. Computers for Kids -- Knowledge Bees
  25. Audio Visual (X) committee?
  26. Data Entry (X) committee?


List A
(whether or not there's $$$)
List B
(need some $$$)
List C
(need all $$$)
List D
(already doing)
List E
(won't do/already done)
  1. Emerging Media -- was for a specific grant; should be merged with media lab.
  2. Media Lab -- no current interest

Notes on the sublists

List A
Things we would like to do even if we have to actually pay for it ourselves.
Grantwriters and other fundraisers should still look at this list. If something seems fundable, we should still try to get funds for it, allowing us to pursue projects lower on the list.
List B
Things we would like to do only if funds could be raised to pay for part of the cost.
Fundraisers may want to consider matching grants, etc.
List C
Things we would like to do only if funds could be raised to pay for all of the cost.
Fundraisers may want to consider what is completely grantable and may ignore things that are not.
List D
Things we are already doing.
These are being integrated into the impact effort grid and the infinite resources list. This is useful in case we saw a need to drop a program or if a program's existence is threatened. (i.e. Such as if we were faced with ongoing financial losses or something we weren't doing yet is a high enough priority to take the place of a lower priority thing that we are already doing.)
List E
Things that there is general agreement we don't want to do
This can be either because they have already been completed, or because there is no consensus around proceeding with the program or project even if it could be funded, etc.

New items to add

Todo List

To-do list for: General Priorities

A lot of these projects are in need of a good fleshing out. Optimus Prime folks are going to try to tackle this, including interviewing folks that have more information and getting their thoughts recorded in the PPS pages. People who are trying to flesh this out are in parentheses

  • System Administration (Martin)
  • Facilities Maintenance (Martin)
  • Enterprise Build (Martin)
  • Open more hours (Ali will interview Dave)
  • Taking over the north office space (Ali)
  • Grantwriting (Ali)
  • Corporate Donations (Matteo)
  • Fundraising (Matteo)
  • Move to a new building (Laurel)
  • Job Experience Interns (Laurel)
  • Taking over the office space in the south (Richard)
  • Printers (Richard)



  • the former Ad Hoc Hiring Priorities Committee was formed occasionally in order to advise the council on financial priorities, especially those that have to do with hiring. It also dealt with grantwriting priorities and other, non-hiring, expenditures.

Related planning documents (July 2009)

Store Meta Question

Thrift Store (PPS)

Thoughts on Increasing Sales Income

Sales Plan

General Free Geek planning documents

Vision Statement

Long Term Strategy Process

General Priorities

Overview Time Line