MadWorC Shared Values
Approved October 23, 2023 by the MadWorC Board of Directors
In the Summer of 2023, we asked one of the founders of MadWorC to facilitate a process of developing a set of shared values. Over the course of several sessions, they led the MadWorC board through an inclusive and deliberative process to define these values.
This collaborative work forms a foundation on which MadWorC will ground difficult decisions, set ethical orientations, and build the bonds that hold the organization together as different cooperatives and as different individuals. We believe that fidelity to these values is fundamental to MadWorC’s sustained strength going forward.
As a cooperative itself, MadWorC makes clear that democratic control requires dedicated member participation which deepens member commitments and forms a basis of solidarity across differences.
Being a human-oriented organization increasingly requires critical questioning of the dehumanizing influences of bureaucratic, technological, and corporate culture. These influences weaken worker democracy, social cohesion, and participation, by reinforcing hierarchy, worker precarity, and other practices such as surveillance that jeopardize workers’ sense of understanding, agency, and dignity.
Our commitment to the following shared values grows out of our conviction that cooperatives can counteract today’s widespread alienation and symptoms of withdrawal, indifference, and self-serving behavior, while forming the infrastructure that helps individuals and communities to become interconnected.
Cooperation and Integrity
We practice cooperation, inclusivity, and sharing.
We build a cooperative world by cooperating. We want our organization to be cooperative rather than competitive.
We build an inclusive world by including. What we create together working in collaboration is more innovative and inclusive than what we can create as individuals.
We build a shared world by sharing. We commit to mutual support in our organization.
We build and maintain a humane culture. We will explore ways to build resilient, supportive, and empathetic communities, rooted in good faith and solidarity, that are sustainable and nurturing. We will celebrate our accomplishments and overcome our challenges with kindness and compassion. We support each other in learning and doing.
Democracy and Transparency
We recognize that democracy can only flourish in a culture of open communication and decision-making that is honest and transparent. We commit to sharing power, and we recognize that democracy is not just a method of decision-making. It is the way we empower people to participate.
We aim to take action on diversity, justice and equity in ways that will genuinely benefit the least advantaged among us.
We strive to align our speech and actions with these principles during and beyond meetings. We show up as our authentic selves, curious about, and accepting of, others.
Participation and Relationships
We build relationships based on trust and mutual respect. These are the foundation for our shared work. We set healthy boundaries, don’t exploit ourselves, ask for help when we need it, and don’t let harm slide. We strive to create a safe and respectful work environment as we communicate and work on our shared goals.
We are aware that safety means different things to different people, often based on life experiences and identity. We prioritize safety for marginalized people. We examine our own feelings to distinguish between safety and comfort, and communicate what we are experiencing.
We believe that differing opinions do not jeopardize our safety but rather broaden our scope and provide us with multiple approaches to problem solving.
Freedom and Autonomy
We strive to create spaces where people have agency to pursue dreams and goals as they are motivated to do so. We believe in autonomy while recognizing the power of cooperation between and among individuals and entities.