0 The Weaver and Champion – OHU

The Weaver and Champion

Tool: The Weaver and Champion

Skills for driving a project and connecting your community.


The Weaver and Champion

Two roles that are important for the success of your project are a 'Champion' and a ‘Weaver'. These 2 roles are distinct and are very rarely held by the same person. The skill sets held by each role are often polar opposites to one another, yet complimentary. However both of these roles are vital as the differing viewpoints are needed for balance, drive and for a project to succeed.

The ‘Champion’ can be described as the ‘motor’ that drives a project, bringing energy and impetus to strategically work through the challenges and opportunities of the project to completion. The ‘Weaver’ brings a distinct focus of people and process, valuing how things are done, who is involved, and is important for keeping the project connected to the community it is intended for.

The tables below outline the strengths and areas of challenges that the ‘Champion’ and ‘Weaver’ role typically have:


Strengths:Areas of challenges:
Holds visionHolds the bigger vision and generally will continue towards the vision without having all the pathways to get there figured out
DrivenOften so driven that relational or feeling thinkers don’t ‘keep up’
Big picture thinkersDoesn't like to focus on detailed work
Risk takers and often makes decisions quicklyWhen required, needs Weaver guidance to follow collective decision making process
Generally build strategic relationships onlyCan ‘miss’ those on the sidelines who could get involved during the operational phase, sometimes doesn't see the full social landscape
Great at the formation phase where goalposts keep changingCan get bored easily and tend to move onto the ‘next development’ not long after the project becomes operational
High level of personal investment often financially, timewise and physicallyCan burn out quickly if not supported
Ideas personCan move onto the next big idea before the last one has been worked through

Community Weaver:

Strengths:Areas of challenges:
Support visionOften want to see or will create the pathways to move towards the vision and are less inclined to start without prior planning or thought and this can slow progress
Intrinsically know that relationships are critical to the success of the project so will build and maintain relationships with those involved in the projectTakes time to create and form relationships, can lead to complex stakeholder engagement, however the Weaver is great in supporting this
See the detail in the big pictureGets caught up in the details and often needs reminder to zoom out and look at the big picture and project's deliverables
Will take time to establish good working processesCan sometimes miss the opportunity to ‘move fast’ or take a risk
Will ‘tuck in’ the details/relationship and ensure service to the community is strong during stressful timesCan become preoccupied by the details and the way people need to be or have been treated. Needs to prioritise and put things in perspective inline with the direction the project is moving, the Weaver and Champion work well in complimenting each other in this aspect
Personality more suited to the longer-term vision, thinking and timeframesCan feel uncertain, uncomfortable with the business and moving goal posts of the formation stage
Balanced focus on wellbeing – people, health and financial and will stop a project if these are out of balanceCan often be the ‘handbrake’ when the Champion is the ‘accelerator’!

To summarise:

Both the Champion and Community Weaver roles are vital for a project to succeed. After reading the above tables, you may be naturally drawn to one role more than that other, according to your areas of interest, strengths, and natural talents. Identifying the role that fits best with you allows you to work in within your strengths, which allows work to be more effortless as your energy and thinking flow naturally.

The next step is to look in your team for who holds the complementary strengths that are not in your repertoire and explore ways to work together. Otherwise you will need to identify someone outside of your team, paying close attention to values, skill sets and personal ways of working and bring them on-board.

This brings us to a whole new conversation and one Ohu Development Community Weaver can have with you! Get in contact and see how our services can help support your community builders.