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COE: Community Over Everything

Community is the support needed to handle uncertainty, fulfill our need for human interaction, and increase productivity and engagement.

Photo of Laura Bacon
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At Maude we focus on building community.  In this period of shifting routines and increased security humans are craving the sense of security, warmth, and inspired productivity that comes from community.  Most businesses have not made this a focus and are seeing the absolute need for it during this crisis.  Community encourages productivity for current workers, increases visibility for potential workers and overall maximizes engagement.  The most impactful product of community is the sharing of ideas, wisdom, and resources that leads to grassroots mission based work, focused volunteerism and innovative solutions to new or pervasive challenges.  

What is the need are you focusing on?

We are experiencing a deficit of connection, interaction, and inspiration. Companies are focused on maintaining financials and crisis management, leaving workers to find their own ways to collaborate, connect, and inspire creativity.  At Maude we have seen that looking inside the volunteers, workers, and leadership at any organization you find a wealth of ideas, initiatives, and wisdom that is only brought out through authentic engagement supported by community.  We build communities with and within organizations so that they create their own ecosystem of support and growth.  

Which type of submission are you sharing?

  • Identifying a gap that needs to be addressed

Describe the business pivot or adaptation in 3-4 sentences.

Maude has the expertise to take any initiatives towards community building and make them virtual and digital to adapt to our current situation. We will work with any organization (profit/non-profit) to help them engage current workers, develop creative solutions, and build a base of support and/or volunteers.

Do you plan to implement this solution?

  • Yes

Describe the impact that this solution will create in the world.

The impact in community building is the strongest impact there is: a ripple effect. Building community within an organization inspires and engages all who come in contact with it. Those people then take that energy, those ideas, and experiences gained on to another aspect in their lives; positively affecting communities as far as the mind can stretch. Impact can be seen quickly during this time of crisis as people are actively seeiking ways to engage with and within their own community organizations or their place of employment.

What is the name of your business or organization?


What does your business/company do? Whose needs does your business/company address? Who do you serve?

Maude is a community building consulting firm that addresses the foundation of all things, the relationship. We work to address and strengthen relationships within an organization and the relationships the organization has outside of itself in order to develop the firm foundation of community.

What is your profession?

I am the owner of Maude & the founder of The Well, a community organization serving the needs of WOC entrepreneurs and creatives as well as a teacher.

Where are you located (country)?

United States

Where are you located (region)?

  • North America

What industry is your business/company in?

  • Community Building

How many people does your business/company employ?

  • 0-10

How old is your business/company?

  • Less than 1 year old

Which classification describes your organization/business?

  • Social Enterprise

What kind of stakeholders and partnerships are needed to pursue this solution?

  • Funding- Grants
  • Funding- Investment

Do you need help building partnerships and finding partners?

  • Yes

If Yes to the above, please share 1-2 sentences describing the specific help you desire.

I am looking to build partners to help Maude reach more organizations and that believe in our mission and would like to help support us grow.

What do you think are the main barriers to implementing this solution?

Funds in order to deliver the practical resources necessary to build community. Practical resources may be tech based, content based or human services based.

If you are currently working on a pivot, what have you learned so far?

In working on pivoting The Well from an in person collaboration space to a thriving online community I have learned that keeping overhead low is key. This allows more flexibility in programs and services offered. The business model can be flipped to make community the ultimate goal instead of revenue. I've also learned that addressing and listening to your user/member/customer/employee is key to moving forward. The ONLY way to build community is with the buy in and contributions of its members. Lastly, I have learned that community cannot be built in solitude. Leaders and builders must collaborate and find a network of "thinking support" in order to build a community that can serve as a rich foundation for any entity.

Are you aware of any open source efforts, hackathons or other collaborative efforts related to your solution? Are you participating in these efforts?

I am not.


Join the conversation:

Photo of Isaac Jumba

It is exciting to have you on the challenge Laura Bacon . Thank you for sharing the pivot Maude is making in response to the current situation especially around community building for teams and organization. With the current situation, are there specific tools or content that you have developed to help better address the needs you are serving? I'm also curious to understand if you are envisioning your pivot to be a long term one

Photo of Laura Bacon

@isaacjumpa Thank you for your reply and question. I've been working on specific tools and content for my non-profit, The Well, and using that as a case study for how I'm moving forward with Maude. Every move I'm trying with my non-profit I am working on making a practical tool to share via Maude. I am envisioning the pivot to be a long term one. These concerns and the need for community to maximize engagement and drive revenue are not going away.