Index 2.0 | Leadership, Governance and Decision Making (Pods, Nest and Wise Owls)

What a gargantuan effort bringing this together. THIS is an example of us living up to our reputation as one of the most considered and progressive DAOs :clap:

Index Coop is at an inflection point, where we could stagnate due to circular bureaucracy, or rally and evolve into a more robust organization. The process we are going through is uncomfortable and intimidating, because we care deeply about building something bigger than ourselves, and want to get it right, but we can’t let fear or perfectionism get in the way of us taking action.

I am FOR this proposal as an assertive step towards an organization that can make decisions, and act with conviction. As I mentioned in It's time to BUIDL 🤝 :

The proposed Nest and Wise Owl framework is a well though out experiment, that can drive us towards action. We have a ripcord if the Wise Owls don’t perform, which means that either lots of decisions get made, or Wise Owls are removed.


I agree with @overanalyser, and am AGAINST IIP veto power. Veto on IIPs is a slippery slope, and I support his description of softer power to transparently influence the voters.

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It is awesome to see our community rallying behind this proposal :rocket:

At the Leadership Forum (video) on 17th Nov there was further discussion on the core principles which should underpin the Wise Owls. I have summarized these below:

Wise Owl Principles

  • Wise Owls are responsible for identifying and solving any decisions or challenges that lack a clear owner or route to resolution. They are a backstop on decision making failure and will create clear paths to unblock blockers
  • Wise Owls will use RAPID to create and/or delegate decisions to Nests or Pods to enable progressive decentralization over time.
  • Wise Owls will retain core decision making responsibility in instances where the decisions are so complex, challenging or cross-functional that they cannot be solved by any other group.
  • Wise Owls are committed to transparency and should provide a clear rationale to the community on why decisions are being made
  • Wise Owls are accountable to the Community and Token holders, both of whom have the power to disband the Wise Owls if they are unhappy with the direction. They have executive power, exercised with accountability.
  • Wise Owls are servant leaders and should champion our Guiding Principles. They should foster a sense of belonging and safety and treat all community members with empathy and respect.

Wise Owl Responsibilities

This means that up until the 28th of Feb, Wise Owls responsibilities may include, but are not limited to:

  • Prioritisation of full time hiring
  • Providing Q1 priorities to guide the creation of Nest
  • Determining funding for each Nest
  • Determining the final Compensation & Community Allocation structure to be proposed through IIP
  • Resolving conflict between Nests
  • Meeting bi-weekly with Set Labs

Wise Owl Nominations

We have now established principles for the Wise Owls to operate under and seem to have broad community support to proceed.

As such, it seems the right time to look to start the Wise Owl nomination process :rocket: I will detail the specifics of this process shortly via a separate post.

Wise Owls Name

How cool does Spartan Council, sound!? Names can make a big difference, and lacking any creative inspiration so far I have just stuck with “Wise Owls”. However, to quote some feedback, “Wise Owls - it’s a bit of a s*** name”.

Can you come up with something better?. To help get those creative juices flowing, we are introducing a community competition to rename the Wise Owls… share the winning name and you will get a $1,000 prize.

Please drop your name ideas below. Stick a :heart: if you read a name suggestion that really resonates. If there are a few popular options - we will go to the polls.

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Super basic…

A group of owls is call a Parliament… so I’m naturally inclined to suggest.

The Parliament of Owls

or TPOs for short… :grimacing::grimacing:

TPOs of IC… even just… “The Parliament of Index Coop.”

Anyways looking forward to the creative ideas for this. :fire::fire::fire:

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@Pepperoni_Joe Just noting that most of the discussion here has been directed towards the Wise Owls, with very little discussion done on the Pods and Nest structure. I would suggest separating these two topics in order to make sure appropriate attention and feedback is given to each topic.

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While wise owls is not a particularly s*** name, it could potentially bring confusion to any outside parties. I think a clear and easy to understand name for this particular group would be the Index Council.

As the definition of a council is ‘a group of people who come together to consult, deliberate, or make decisions’; this would clearly communicate the general purpose and remit of this newly elected group.

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i tend to agree that simple, clear is the way to go, :heavy_plus_sign: to Index Council

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Jumping straight into some comments/feedback – may be a bit outdated based on Joe’s latest reply.

This is paired with feedback/convo during today’s leadership forum call, and the general tenor is one of bonhomie, despite the terse writing :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: very well will loop back here with more thoughts.

Noted – though I do think that if we hope that this structure alleviates the decision making problems, this is exactly where the rubber meets the road.

Getting clear delegated decision making right (really, getting MVP out and iterating) is what should really make a difference.

agree agree agree, one of the biggest risks. Though i’d sharpen it to, “getting the right things done.”

"All else being equal, the fastest company in any market will win. Speed is a defining characteristic — if not the defining characteristic — of the leader in virtually every industry you look at."

via: Speed as a Habit

While I agree that an enumerated list is not ideal, I do think that broad principles make sense and actually set up this group for success.

Those principles will make clear what the community expects of them and as such, will offer some guidance as the vote occurs.

why 2 mechanisms? what is the thinking there?

This timeline seems very aggressive and unrealistic – I doubt that a newly formed group will be able deliver “Prioritized list of roles for FT hiring shared with the community” ~48 hours after being formed.

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I strongly support this initiative.

The biggest threat we’re collectively facing is an inability to make decisions in a reasonable time frame to address issues and to push the business forward. Traditional startups that aren’t nimble…die. I see no reason DAOs will be any different.

This initiative will help us better unblock, prioritize, and decide - all while instilling a healthy balance of guardrails, accountability, and discipline.

Well done, team.

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G-20
Dirty Dozen
Oceans Eleven
Hateful Eight
Wise Seven (W7)
akin to G7

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Does this apply to individuals within the group or the group as a whole (or both?). Concern would be that if the decision making power is handed over to that group, and they are disbanded, there will be a period similar to the current one where Coop has lack of direction. Do you think it’s sufficient incentive alignment if only individuals can be removed via this process?

Overall seems like the community has aligned around a proven model and it’s up to the Coop to now make it their own, which is a positive outcome. I hope it means each WG is empowered to take their specialities and run with them, becoming less constrained or unsure, and therefore delivering to the max of their capability.

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Is “Seven Samurai” too self-aggrandizing? :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

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@gregdocter the thinking behind including this mechanism both for community vote and IIP was that it is important that Wise Owls be accountable both to the community AND token holders. On reflection, I think the 55% threshold is potentially too low, and puts the Wise Owls in a pretty precarious position - this is something I imagine we will change for future iterations.

@DarkForestCapital in this interim “experimental” phase I have intentionally left the mechanism broad/flexible to ensure either specific Wise Owls, or the group in its entirety can be replaced. Given that disbanding of the Wise Owls risks leading to further paralysis (like we have now) I have faith that the community and IIP holders will appreciate this, and act responsibly if they ever start to consider replacing one, or all of the Wise Owls.

It would be wrong of me to impose deliverables on the Wise Owls before they are formed. However, whilst it is certainly an aggressive timeline, it is not an unrealistic one as I would like to see Wise Owls move extremely quickly to address Full Time Hiring needs - a developing an initial prioritised list could probably be hashed out in their first meeting.

@sixtykeys noted, and I have just shared this post call for nominations for Wise Owls / the Index Council. I will also follow up with a separate post articulating the next steps for Nest creation shortly to enable more targeted discussion.

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Index Council
^^^^^^^^^^^^

Even if this means I have to delete the keyboard shortcuts I already made for Wise Owls :owl:

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Will just touch on this as I brought it up! I think there is huge potential in this and we are hearing of other DAO’s also looking at this model with great interest.
Fully agree with @Pepperoni_Joe though that we need a decision-making group now and so as not to be a distraction in the immediate term, let’s keep it off the radar and resurface at least until the “Wise Owls” have settled in. From there I’m happy to collaborate with anyone else interested in looking into it.

Yep, defo supportive of this!

PS. +1 for Index Council from me. hh

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We can use POAPs, which can automatically be time limited. No need of transfer of a decision power, just issue a new set of POAOs for the next term.

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Posting here re: IIP-XY: Forming a Liquidity Pod

Note: 100% for delegating decision making to clear, expert groups of individuals – i’m not commenting on that IIP specifically but this seems to open broader questions that are related to this thread.

Three questions come to mind

  • Are IIPs the best way for us as a community to make those decisions? Seems like using IIP for operational decisions like this might be less than ideal.
  • Are Nests/Pods expected to use IIPs to make clear their domain(s) of decision making?
  • Am I misunderstanding Nests/Pods?

Posing not b/c I’m looking for an immediate response, but to get the questions down and not lose them.

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I am a new contributor here, only about two weeks into onboarding. The first thing I noticed about the budgeting process is the complexity and regularity. It looks like this proposal intends to reduce the budget decision making process. I think this is an important aspect of the proposal and will help free up time for all owls.

The wise owl proposal looks like an excellent idea. I’ve experienced flat/matrix style traditional companies in previous employment. My biggest issue with the flat/matrix concept was the lack of knowledge on who was or was not the decision maker. I view the wise owl concept as a facilitator who will help contributors become more successful rather than a hindrance or a dictator.

Thank you for creating the slides, I really enjoyed reading through the proposal.

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Great work, autonomy and responsibility are key elements in an efficient organization.

I totally get the critics of coin voting governance, and I agree the current voting system does not make much sense, most of the token holders don’t want to vote on every operational decision.

However, when I read in slide 31 that “Index Coop’s continued operations are enabled through the value of the INDEX token. We must ensure any changes don’t undermine this value.”, I ask myself, is this enough to “not undermine” the value of INDEX token?

I would like to know what is the LT plan for $INDEX and I think it should be linked in some way to the governance structure. I am not at all for aggressive short term ponzinomics, but I think it would be time to think seriously about how $INDEX will capture value. And for me it would make sense to integrate the tokenomics strategy in this governance/decision making study.

By the way, in the new governance structure, which nest or pod would be responsible for the tokenomics?

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Great question. my current read on it is that tokenomics aren’t delegated to any WG or Nest in particular & has only been broached as an Index2.0 topic thus far. The airdrop & staking modules that are a part of the current Index2.0 initiative have been community workshop-led, but future considerations would fall to the Wise Owls / Council to decide if a tokenomics update is in order, who would then delegate the work/authority to an appropriate pod/nest.

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Great work, I really like the approach to become more agile with clear governance, but keep the decentralized nature of the organization. This can be a great example for other DAOs as well as how to operate efficiently.
My question would be is there a clear definition of what can be decided on Pods / Nest / Wise-owl level - I like the autonomy of the team but have not seen if they can make a decision on their own for some operational stuff.

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