MeldFest 2019 – Delivering on our mission

January is a time of natural reflection and gathering. At Meld, it’s part of our DNA to do this as a collective, and MeldFest is a time for us to align and define who we are as Meld together, the role we play, and the paths we wish to forge or follow.

This year we spent three very hot, sweaty days together in the Hunter Valley in a Texan inspired ranch reflecting on the last 10 years, and looking forward to the next 10, an d beyond. We covered a lot in our time away, a lot of which we’ll be talking about over the next year, but for now, here’s the highlights reel.

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Our mission has been the same since day one

”We exist to improve the everyday lives of people as they interact with the world around them.”

Meld is turning 10 this year, and a part of growing up is being more deliberate about where you focus your attention and to what end. So, what might this look like for us for the next 10 years? This year for us at Meld is about advocating for our mission with more intent and definition.

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We’re developing an advocacy framework

One way we’re doing this is through the prototype of an advocacy framework to ensure that the work we are doing improves human life in balance with, not at the cost of, our world by helping us define what we want to advocate for.

The prototype pulls from the UN Sustainability Goals, Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Doughnut Economics, and Meld’s values, aspirations and agendas. The intention is to use this tool as a way of assessing the type of work we want to be doing, exploring how we can advocate for our world in the projects we undertake, and ultimately, help us define the impact each of our projects has – intentional and unintentional.

We’re now seeing first hand the impact of ignoring, or, being oblivious to the consequences of our actions. The revelations from the banking royal commission, studies showing the impact the SSM survey had, the UN special report on climate change.  We need to make space to define, reflect and iterate what it means to do good work – as an organisation and as individuals. We’ll be sharing our learnings as we develop our framework.

We have three areas of focus

In 2019, we have set three areas of focus to channel our collective effort into, so we can have the deep impact we itch for. We are clear in the services we offer, and our Advocacy Framework helps explore the influence we can have in these spaces and places.

  1. Government and Citizen Experience
  2. Urban and Regional Infrastructure
  3. Financial Services.

MeldFest saw us introduce Objective Key Results (OKRs) as a way of becoming more pointy and tangible within the broader direction our strategy and mission is guiding us. Over the next quarter, we’re using Meld as a live prototype to explore, define, ideate, test and iterate what OKR’s are to us – making them something for us, by us. There’ll be more on this over the year as we learn and iterate on these.

Why we love MeldFest?

The three days balanced defining and designing Meld with connecting with each other – in the pool, over a game of ping pong, cooking family dinners and eating together. Without this connection, the motivation for each of us to collaborate and contribute to Meld would be less. We all deeply believe in the company we work for, and actively want to help shape what it looks like. We know our opinions, diverse and otherwise, are invited.

We all left MeldFest with a fire in our bellies – a fresh enthusiasm to start working towards our defined objectives together. It hasn’t fizzled out after we go back to work, either. A month later we are seeing action and collective drive. I truly put this down to all of us being a part of the journey we are on, being given space as individuals to challenge, question, and provoke, and, almost most importantly, we created and left Meld Fest with tangible actions and next steps that spoke to the matter, not just the meta.

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