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The GWÖ-GmbH was the first of the ECG organisations to start a participatory process to develop a vision, mission and orientation of the organisation together with all major stakeholder groups. The first step is to create transparency about the previous activities, the second step is to develop a perspective.

This process is so far unique in the ECG. Although there are assemblies of delegates at different levels, these are always within the movement's sphere of influence and therefore have no direct (or even binding) impact on the organisations' activities. These are still controlled by the respective bodies, the general assembly and the board of directors. Similarly, the responsible decision-making bodies of a GmbH (German limited company) are defined by law — the general meeting of members and the management board. Any participatory stakeholder process can therefore only have a recommendatory character for the decision-making bodies.

Process design

This process cannot take place one step at a time; therefore information has to be communicated simultaneously with the development of the vision of the future.

In this process, knowledge is conveyed iteratively and perspectives are developed on the basis of this knowledge. A greater depth of detail must be achieved from step to step. In the end, the stakeholders involved should have built up knowledge that meets their respective needs and cooperative, appropriate decision templates for owners and management should have been developed.

  • In order to be able to understand the business activity, a great deal of background and contextual information is needed. At the beginning of the process, this information is not equally accessible to everyone and must therefore be prepared and explained. This was the aim of the first stakeholder conference, which took place on 22 May 2020.
  • At the second stakeholder conference on 29 May 2020, the views of the stakeholders were sought:
    • "Does it make sense to have a service unit/service units for the economic activity within ECG?
    • "If so, what is the point? What would be missing if it did not exist?"
    • "In order to fulfil that purpose: What are the key issues for our stakeholder group?"
    • "In terms of shared responsibility for the purpose of the movement, quality and economy: What do we make ourselves accountable for? And towards whom? What accountability do we see for the legal entity? And towards whom?"
  • Afterwards, smaller, topical working groups will explain details of the business segments and develop respective business segment strategies. A transition plan is required for business areas that are no longer to be continued, if another organizational unit is willing and able to take over these tasks.
  • The employees of GWÖ-GmbH will develop strategies and implementation plans based on these results and present them to the owner representatives.
  • Afterwards, the shareholders' meeting of the GmbH has to make a fundamental decision regarding the continuation while maintaining or changing the existing ownership structure and regarding the individual business fields. This should be done by mid-summer 2020.
  • Subsequently, the agreed measures can be implemented.

Results so far

First stakeholder conference: Status report slides 

(Available in German only - please use for a rough and ready English version)

Second stakeholder conference: Results

(Available in German only - please use for a rough and ready English version)

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