What are our priorities? And how can we stay focused on things that matter the most?

Now that the foundation is set to dissolve after bringing MakerDAO into a new growth stage, how do we as a community make sure we don’t deviate from our path while making sure we continue to evolve?

The governance community has had a firm grasp on the ongoing governance-related decisions and demonstrated the ability to manage the peg and the risks associated with onboarding collaterals. However, when it comes to business decisions, a new framework needs to be in place to overcome the challenge of making direction-setting decisions.

The good news is that Project Compass has started creating a consensus-setting framework.

I would like us to start listing what we think as priorities and build a consensus on critical business topics. Once Project Compass releases a framework, we can take on the priorities one by one. Let me begin by listing priorities I believe we need to tackle first:

  1. Mission and vision - This topic has been discussed repeatedly. Once we have the framework in place, I believe this will be our number one priority.
  2. MakerDAO’s short-term and long-term objectives - Again, once we have a consensus framework in place, we can build consensus and finalize so that each unit can be aligned and create its deliverables accordingly.
  3. Ensuring the handover from the foundation takes place smoothly
    a. Have we missed anything regarding functions that the foundation currently covers?
    b. How can we create a better “customer journey” for all participants in the DAO? They are people who recently read about us in the media and want to find out more. They are first-time vault owners, Dai users, MKR holders, voters, liquidation participants, and potential partners. For that reason, I see the topic/poll posted by @iammeeoh about moving to Discord as a priority.

We need to reach a consensus on our priorities and recognize the urgent issues at hand as a DAO. Without an objective set first for MakerDAO, the core units and the community risk running in different directions and weakening our efforts.

What do you think is our priority from the business perspective? How can we focus on priorities instead of being distracted by topics that seem interesting to engage but have low priorities?

This post is in a sense following through a discussion @SebVentures had started.

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What do you mean? Growth Core Team has been continuing to expand Dai use cases and business rapidly across different blockchains. What I am more curious from potential marketing teams is specifics on how they would tackle such opportunity rather than spending too much time on laying out framework (we need more executions). For example, we just got listed MKR and Dai on one of the largest Korean exchanges Bithumb. And Dai is the only and the first stablecoin there. How would your core team try to tackle it? I asked specifics last time when one of core member gave out framework idea on business side but didn’t get a response either.

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The reason I am confronting like this is I feel like this potential marketing core team is trying to set a framework for business. Of course, other opinions and suggestions are always appreciated but not calls for “we need to figure out business framework” when they have been discussed and shared many times before. If you disagree with the approach, can share specifics on how to change it not general “oh we should think about and change them”

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Hello Doo, that’s actually opposite of what the marcomms core unit is trying to do. In all of our engagement so far with the community and the facilitators whom we have presented our proposal to, we have taken a strong collaborative approach.

In particular, we have also highlighted how we intend to work with Nadia and her team to help amplify and market use cases and new deals. See the strategy deck on page 11 example located in the shared drive - MakerDAO Strategic Marcomms - Google Drive

Regarding your question about MKR and DAI being listed in Bithumb, yes, i agree with you, it’s an opportunity to market (the same goes for MKR and DAI being listed in another top exchange in another market). We will have to leverage:

  1. Owned channels - Leveraging our owned channels like Twitter, Blog, Website, to put out an announcement about the listing

  2. Work together with the exchange on announcing the news together (say the optimum time / day) for optimum impact.

  3. Earned media - through our PR efforts to get it into the top tier relevant press & media to generate earned media. Will also look to pitch to be involved as speakers at relevant events or conference with the opportunity to further talk about where MKR & DAI are available and listed.

  4. Co-marketing - Collaborate with the exchange on possible initiatives to create demand to trade, could also include incentives, trading competition, etc. Could include prizes as part of this marketing campaign exclusive Maker swag. Or perhaps identify the top MKR trader champion of the week or month. These are some initial broader examples. There will be different tactical deliverables which we can do, with the ultimate goal to amplify our presence.

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Yes, we are aware that the Growth team has been expanding the use cases across different verticals. We intend to collaborate with the Growth team and other core units to help enhance and market their work.

If you take a closer look at my post, it mainly comes from me as a community member. Being part of an organization, no matter which division you belong to, one would naturally want to know answers to essential questions such as:

What are our mission and vision?
What are our objectives short-term to long-term?
What are our priorities?

They are important because each division will take initiatives and coordinate efforts based on the answers to those questions.

And since we are a DAO, those answers can’t quickly be answered by one unit. That is why having a consensus on the list of priorities is important. I believe that is also why Project Compass is working on creating a directional-setting framework.

Once again, I am requesting more specifics as the potential marketing core unit will be tasked with it. What you shared can be applied to any exchange. For example, what are such “top relevant press & media”? And since it’s Korean focused, some of these media will be based in Korea. And if the core team doesn’t know the Korean PR market well, they will have to ask for PR agency. What that PR agency will be? All these are questions that the team will have to face now.

Also, regarding “incentives, trading competition”, such have been strongly shunned by the Maker community. Especially when it comes to MKR related trading or exchange events, so far all the exchange related activities were about DAI not MKR as the core team prioritized DAI growth and liquidity and not MKR. Also, fundamentally, there are many exchanges that request such but been rejected so why does the potential core unit believe it should apply to Bithumb?

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Ok, that’s fair. But I just believe such have been discussed quite frequently and business has been executed on it

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Doo, I can sense frustration from your comments, and I want to say that I feel the same. However, I hope you can see that the goal here is to identify priorities and critical points so that we can get to work quickly and effectively. It is a way to prevent noise and set a clear direction that will help us stay focused.

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Thanks for continuing the discussion. As I said elsewhere, a big difficulty for facilitators is to sense what the community wants, what are the priorities stuff like that. Having a mission, vision and short/long term objectives would help (but they can obviously change every day as this space is so fast). Quite a hard topic you chose I can tell you :slight_smile: But a worthwhile try as this is super important.

On one hand, you might be too high level and go nowhere (it is my impression at least regarding my attempt 6 months ago), on the other you might focus on a too low level.

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My hunch is that it is near impossible for ‘the community’ to synthesize a common goal out of thin air and that facilitators (in addition to groups specialized in figuring out goals) are especially well-positioned to have informed opinions on what is worthwhile to submit to the community after considering tradeoffs between risk, reward and our current execution capabilities. The Multichain Strategy post is a great example.

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I agree. If it was a company then there might be CEO or the board that can decide on such and direct toward “employees”. But in my opinion, DAO is more of a group of political parties that discuss together and vote on them. For example, as some may know, I am very hawkish and focuses on aggressive expansion and growth while minimizing cost. And even if certain paths are accused of “decreasing decentralization” such as having stablecoin or RWA as collateral or partnering with CeFi and legacy finance, I strongly believe they are needed to further expand Dai ecosystem and exposure.

However, there are also some that highly disagree with such position. Indeed, some even left to create their “ideal” versions but again, priorities and ideals are different for everyone and while it’s possible to agree on general consensus, would be hard to nail out all the details.

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I feel it too.

Maybe you might need to think further about what has triggered this frustration - and meanwhile this, don’t forget that one your previous proposal triggered the all time first thread encouraging a vote against it. I think that while what you write is fine from a marketing point of view, but there are flaws in the communication with the community.

Don’t get me wrong, I think what you’re doing in the marketing area is important and good, but maybe you need to polish the communication part with the community. I do not mean here words of absolute promise, only if someone asks you a question, you answer it, because that’s what communication is.

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If I may jump in to assist. Internal disagreements based on viewpoints is normal, however, accelerating and going down this path can lead to heavy economic cost and community morale degradation. Cases in point: internal US political and social conflicts, North / South korea conflict, Hong Kong/China conflict. My experience as a Board Director, has shown that internal board conflict/dysfunction can easily destroy an organization from the inside out. At the expense of the company, board members can have an agenda and personal mission/vision/values that is either congruent or incongruent to the organization’s mission and vision. I do not believe that is the case here, but I encourage the parties come together and work as a team, in a united fashion, and compromise, otherwise, the cost (economic and morale) is very high.

There are external forces, rivals and competitors that deserve your united energy–where a fight is more appropriate. Externalize your competition, join forces and dominate your enemies/rivals, not each other.

Then, you can win as a team.

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Thanks for jump in.

The way I see it, you can only manage a team, a company, with authority, with rank, because every successful team has been led by a successful leader in the past.

So it’s an interesting situation when you have a team without a leader. In terms of communication, it’s a peer-to-peer situation. So in our case we are talking about side-by-side information exchange, there is no up or down, only sideways, and the communication is very task-oriented. We all want this to work super well, but we are looking at the problems from very different angles. I think that’s one of the reasons why it’s harder to build a team from the people who are here.

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Yes, it is a different approach. more like a council, a traditional governance Board, or something like an alliance, (NATO, UN). Adobe experimented with co-leadership of 2 executives for a long time that worked. They were friends. Traditional leadership approaches may not work in this case and that’s where a lot of issues can come from. It’s possible to try a strategy of rotational leadership and different types of political / democratic governance models.

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Hi Doo and Kathleen

Perhaps I can assist in helping to establish an overall context here. You are both correct and it really is about finding the right balance of forward-thinking and foundation-setting strategic work and immediate execution.

The challenge that every new organization, whether DAO or not, faces is that it can’t exist in a vacuum. It needs to operate in its market realities and focus on execution and short-term returns as it builds for the long-term. The converse to that is that a sole short-term focus eventually leads to inertia because there is no proper strategic direction to move into. It’s definitely a challenge but you can be comfortable that it is a positive one to have. It shows that you are progressing and growing.

So, as the important questions that Kathleen has rightly prioritized (there are more questions to ask as well – but for the risk of diluting this message, I’ll hold off until another post on those) are answered, execution must go on. Some of this execution, we will later find out, will be in line with the strategic direction while others will diverge from it to varying degrees. It is a iterative process that you will eventually come to alignment on as long as you keep learning and making distinctions on what has worked versus your mission and vision and what has not.

While the rest of the strategic foundation work will take longer to establish, what’s most important right now is an alignment to the vision and mission (and even this takes time, iterations and learning to get to). However, executions that greatly support this vision and mission or even somewhat support it will be generally well received in the market (as long as that vision and mission is clearly stated to the market). Those executions that don’t will not be well-received (but the trial and error process must proceed to identify these as well).

So, please keep going as you are with both the executions and strategic work. You are all well-intentioned and those intentions will eventually get you to a happy place where you will see the alignment between strategy and execution.

I hope this is helpful to you.