Webinar: Mass Trainings

What’s this webinar about?

Dani Moscovitch and her team at IfNotNow have been wrestling with these questions, and figuring out how a mass training program can address them:

  • How do we give people access to transformative experience and leadership development at scale?

  • How do we allow people to self-organize and act autonomously and without waiting for permission from a centralized group - without losing sight of our goal or our unified theory of change?

  • How do we do hard core, meaningful leadership development for thousands of people without staffing up or centralizing control?

In this webinar, Dani describes IfNotNow’s mass training program, how it allowed them to bring in thousands of new volunteers in a ‘moment of the whirlwind’—the moments when you’re no longer organizing within a structure and the movement is taking on a life of its own, core features of how to build your own, and mistakes they made that you should avoid.

Dani Moscovitch is a founding member and national organizer with IfNotNow, a momentum-driven movement led by young Jews working to transform the American Jewish community's support for the occupation in Israel/Palestine into a call for freedom and dignity for all.

In particular, she is a lead architect of IfNotNow's decentralized mass training program, which has trained over 2000 leaders (and counting) at 1 and 2 day trainings in 14 cities, led by 300+ volunteer trainers and 50+ volunteer coaches. With the support of the momentum community and Cosecha, Dani was part of the core team that spent a year applying momentum theory to craft IfNotNow’s story, strategy and decentralized structure before relaunching with a mass training program in December 2015.

What is mass training?

Mass training is not one big training. Mass trainings allow for thousands of leaders to join your movement while maintaining autonomy (allowing people to take independent action) and unity (on the key DNA of the movement - the story, strategy, structure, and culture). Mass trainings accomplish the following:

  • Give people the ability to act autonomously through distributing the DNA of the movement.

  • Replicate and scale – everything in the training program from the curriculum to the roles to the support structure is systematized in order to grow exponentially while maintaining quality.

  • Provide transformative leadership development experiences, such that participants leave with a transformed understanding of themselves as leaders, and a new vision for what’s possible.

When your movement has momentum, mass trainings are your key absorption tool, to bring in many new volunteers into the movement. When you do not have momentum, mass trainings help you do deep leadership development to prepare for the next political opportunity.

Key Momentum Concepts

Frontloading: Establishing the DNA of an organization – the story, strategy, structure, and culture of a movement – before launching, so that the movement can be distributed to thousands of volunteers who can act autonomously while maintaining alignment, is one of key goals of the process of frontloading. Check out this brief description. We take participants through an overview of this process in our core trainings.

IfNotNow also successfully leveraged the ‘Cycle of Momentum’ in the weeks following Steve Bannon’s appointment to the White House by launching the #JewishResistance, and brought in thousands of new volunteers into their movements through:

  • Escalation: a sequence of actions that increase in risk, disruption, and/or participation.

  • Absorption: giving people a next thing to do, and preparing to absorb new leaders into increasing skill and commitment for every escalation.

  • Active popular support: creating sustained participation on the issue through escalation that dramatize the crisis of the occupation and provide people with an opportunity to collectively take action, and bringing people into roles and leadership in the movement.