What Internal Communication Platforms Do We Use and For What?

Our internal communications policies are intended to enable us to be #co-creative, #build-in-public, and #embrace-emergence.

Platforms

Slack

Use Slack for just-in-time communications that don’t need to be saved. Please respond to messages that mention you specifically within a week because Slack is used to reach people quickly. At the same time, please don’t expect immediate responses. We’re all about taking the time we need to rest. If you ever need to take a break from Slack, please communicate to the team ahead of time and give a backup option for reaching you quickly so that you don’t unintentionally block decisions.

Slack Details
  • Purpose
    • Short-form communications
    • Time sensitive information
    • Communications that do not need to be saved. We see only the most recent 10,000 messages.
  • Confidentiality
    • Slack is a private space for
      • YPC organizers
      • Potential members
      • Partner delegates
    • Do not share information in Slack outside of YPC (screenshots and/or quotes) without consent. If there’s anything we want to be kept more confidential, then we are responsible for clearly stating it. If someone else has requested confidentiality, we keep it.
    • There may be times when an individual member or organizational partner must keep things confidential to their own contexts like with litigation. In that case, please use a space outside of the YPC Slack to organize.
  • User Account
  • Navigation
  • Notifications
    • Channels to join, mute, and/or leave
      • Must be in #_announcements and individual circle channels but can leave everything else.
    • Mobile app notification preferences
    • Email notification preferences. If you will interact with Slack ONLY via email
      • Turn on notifications for all messages in #_announcements + any other channel you want to see every message for
      • Test that you get notified via email when DMd or mentioned
      • Test that you can reply to Slack messages by responding via email
  • Accessibility
  • Usage and Expectations
    • Tag considerately
      • Tag individuals to make sure they see a message or also share the message to them via DM
      • Avoid @channels unless absolutely necessary
    • Respond if tagged
    • Respond in threads
    • Read #_announcements and be thoughtful about when you need to post something there, too. Announcements are for big news that everyone needs to be aware of.
    • Read and consent to meeting reports to the extent that written information is accessible to you
    • Be thoughtful about where you post and for what reasons. Check the topic of each Slack channel to learn what each channel is for.
  • Updating Email and Other Account Information

Google Groups

Use Google Groups for email communications that are private, and to manage Google products like invites to calendar events and permissions on Google Folders and documents. Another use of Google Groups is when emailing external partners who are not yet a part of the Youth Power Coalition network.

Google Groups Details
  • Purpose
    • Efficiently email all circle members without needing to individually add emails
    • Give people outside of the YPC team the ability to contact a specific circle without being on our Slack or Hub
    • Control access to Google Collaboration Platforms like our Shared Drive, Calendars, and Events
    • Create a central repository of all circle communications so as people move in and out of the circle, the history of circle communications remain
  • Confidentiality
    • Google Groups are private to the members of the google group and the internal comms team which administers the Google Groups.
  • User Account
  • Navigation
  • Usage and Expectations
    • Email circle Google Group when there’s a topic that everyone should see
    • Add circle Google Group to calendar invites. Particularly important so that events show up on our YPC Admin Calendar
  • Updating Email
    • Contact each circle’s lead and/or secretary role holders and request they change your email address

Google Drive

Use the Youth Power Coalition Shared Drive to create and store any YPC related files. Keep files organized in folders that mirror our circle structure so that they are discoverable. If you do not have access to our Shared Drive or need to give someone else access, let internal comms know!

Google Drive Details
  • Purpose
    • Long-term storage of documents
  • Confidentiality
    • Viewable by all team members
    • Individual documents may have wider permissions. For example, all meeting notes are commentable by anyone who has a link.
      • Consider adding permissions levels to the title of the document for transparency e.g. (Public) or (Confidential)
  • User Account
  • Navigation
  • Usage and Expectations
    • Create relevant docs in corresponding circles’ folders
  • Updating Email
    • Contact Internal Comms and request they change your email address

Admin Calendar

Go to the YPC Admin Calendar whenever you need to know what meetings are coming up! If you’re scheduling a YPC meeting, make sure to add it there!

Admin Calendar Details
  • Purpose
    • Transparency of Circle Meetings
    • Opportunity for YPC Members outside of any one Circle to request being able to attend
  • Confidentiality
    • All information on the Admin Calendar is public to everyone
    • Attending meetings with Google Meet links that are created directly from the Admin Calendar requires being added to the calendar invite
  • User Account
  • Navigation
  • Usage and Expectations
    • Know where the YPC Admin Calendar is
    • Make sure you are invited to the events you’d like to attend in order to prevent technical difficulties in joining
  • Updating Email
    • Update your email in your circle google group to receive calendar invites when your circle google group is emailed

Hub

Use our Hub (online forum) for communications that promote transparency and memory. Examples of communications on our Hub include project details and policies. The Hub is generally for slow conversations, so take your time. If you do need someone to respond more quickly, you can share a link to the Hub topic with them on Slack.

Hub Details
  • Purpose
    • Long-form discussions
    • Project planning
    • Documentation
    • Interactions with the wider Youth Power Coalition community
    • Increased transparency
  • Confidentiality
    • Confidentiality changes per category. The vast majority of categories are public to anyone with the link, but some categories are confidential and should not be shared with anyone outside of that category. They have a lock icon near them :lock:
  • User Account
    • Create an account at hub.youthpowercoalition.org
      • Click on the Sign Up button
      • Check email to activate account
    • Choose username and Full Name
      • If there are privacy concerns because this is a public forum, use an alias and/or include only last initial
    • Add profile picture
    • If you’re an organizer, request to be added to the Organizers Hub group
  • Navigation
  • Notifications
    • Circle Specific Categories are muted by default. Navigate to the Categories you’re interested in and choose the appropriate notification level: Watching/Tracking/Watching First Post/Normal/Mute
    • Summary Email Frequency and Timing
    • Optional Desktop Notifications
    • Optional Mobile Notifications
    • Double-check your email to make sure Hub notifications are making it to your inbox
  • Usage and Expectations
    • Use for long-form discussions, project planning, and documentation
    • Respond if tagged
  • Updating Email
    • Change your user preferences

Values

In all of these communications, keep the following in mind:

  • Lead with Love: We’re a community online as much as we are offline. Be welcoming, joyful, and empathetic.
  • Build in Public: Make conversations as public as possible while honoring confidentiality.
  • Own Our Impact: Be thoughtful about what and how you communicate.
  • Embrace Emergence: Play, explore, connect with others, co-create.
  • Act on Principle: Act according to our vision, mission, and values.

And, follow these guidelines: YPC Accessible Communications Guidelines (Public) - Google Docs

Need Support?

We understand that communication platforms need to be accessible and accommodate multiple communication styles, so please reply to this post if you have questions and/or requests for support! You also have members in your circle who could support and/or you can contact internal comms.

Suggestion from Carline: Add to the Hub that people need to make sure they can get email notifications from the Hub (you may need to turn on the Forums tab in your inbox)