What will you expect from me if I join Elsie?
The main commitment that we would ask is that you come to as many of the 2 hour monthly meetings as possible. At each meeting we will hear about 4 people who need help to make real progress with their project. Our job will be to develop imaginative, creative and above all practical options that they can pursue to move things forward. We might suggest introductions or referrals or we might offer specialist help ourselves. The meetings will bring together a large and diverse group of civic minded people who just want to help others to crack on with their chosen projects. Over time you will find that this group become a tremendous resource for you as well as for Elsie clients.
I would love to be involved – but not sure I have any expertise to offer?
Everyone can help someone. We never know what help we will be asked for. It might be some aspect of business development, or advice on how to run a campaign or where to find local people to help. If you want to help then you can. Probably much more than you know.
How do I sign up to get involved?
Use the contact form to let me know you are interested.
Can we try Elsie somewhere other than Leeds?
Feel free! Leeds is my patch, and I am going to focus my energy on making it work here before we go anywhere else. But if you would like to try and set up something similar in your neck of the woods please do get in touch and I will help as much as I can.
Is Elsie a bit like Enterprise Facilitation(TM) or BizzFizz?
But there are major differences.
Firstly Elsie works with a range of coaches and advocates already working in the community providing them with an additional support network. Secondly we are not limiting our assistance to the field of business start-ups and entrepreneurship. We will use the knowledge of the community to provide assistance to anyone in the community who is trying to to do just about anything!
I am not sure if I should be a member, advocate, sponsor or service user?
Don’t worry, these are not mutually exclusive roles. You can be one or more of any of these! The only rule is that if an advocate is presenting your story, and you are a member, we will ask you to step out of the meeting while we brainstorm how we might help!
What Happens If it Goes Wrong and We Get Sued?
As an individual you will not be held responsible for any advice, guidance or information that is offered by Elsie. All advice that is offered to an advocate will be provided on a pro-forma that explains that this is offered in good faith but that should not relied upon as expert professionals business advice and should be treated and acted upon with due care and diligence. Any actions taken or decisions made on the basis of information generated by Elsie must be at the discretion and risk of the service user and their advocate. We will simply be providing them with information and insight that they may wish to use. We will NOT be giving professional advice or advising people to act in specific ways. We will just be providing them with options that they may or may not choose to pursue.
Why Does Elsie Work Through Advocates, Advisers and Coaches and not Directly with Clients?
Several reasons really, but the main one is that enterprising people can be very hard to help. They often choose to sugar coat the issues that they face and tend to pitch their business rather than ask for help. It can also be much harder for group members to ‘speak their truth’ if the client is in the room. They too will tend to sugar coat. Also by working through helpers who we can train, we make sure that all offers of help are acknowledged gratefully and then carefully filtered for relevance before being taken back to the client and discussed. The advocate can also help the client to develop an action plan based on what has been discussed. Finally working through coaches, advocates and advisers means that we can bring the right kinds of cases to the panel and offer panel members a degree of anonymity should they require it. There is little worse than being pursued by a passionate entrepreneur or activist who thinks that YOU hold the keys to the kingdom for them.
I have got Another Question…
Then ask it using the contact page. I will answer it personally and include it in the FAQs if appropriate.