Fora Events and Community — Case Study — Leapers Accountability Pod

In November 2019 I didn’t know the word ‘accountability’, but I knew I needed it. I knew there would be other people like me, self-employed and struggling with procrastination without a sense of others around them, so I started a Facebook group that encouraged people who joined to share what they were working on and the journey to get there, so that I could do the same (it was called ‘Commitment Buddies’ — I told you, I really didn’t know the word ‘accountability’!)

Then came COVID. Self-motivation became even harder. Specifically, I’d lost the fuel that was people’s smiles and laughter in person. I needed something more to maintain momentum. I started sharing my Calendly link and letting anyone who needed to book a slot so that we could work together online and find our focus, knowing there was someone else on the other end of the Zoom who was doing the same. More and more people found it useful for them, so I started to offer it to a community of freelancers I was a part of. It went from 1-to-1 to hosting whole groups of my peers, shaping a space for them to work well and reflect on their productivity. I had a new name for this too: Fora Club.

I hit 1 year of running Fora Club consistently, twice a week, and thought about what it looked like in the future. What do I need, and what do my co-working peers need to stay productive, keep their focus and preserve their wellbeing in a working world that can feel overwhelming and isolating? I knew I wanted a space with more peer support and resources, that felt safe to share more openly and where you’d get that nudge or affirmation just when you needed it.

Collaborating with two other freelancers from online community Leapers, we pooled our skills and energy to launch the first cohort of the Pod, a paid monthly accountability programme for freelancers and self-employed people. You can read much more about the Pod here, but highlights of the programme are:

  • Dedicated, facilitated community platform
  • Bi-weekly check-in calls, to set intentions and review the week
  • Daily written prompts for self-reflection
  • Facilitated online co-working sessions
  • A bumper resource library for productivity and working well

We filled our first cohort in October 2021, and 70% of our ‘podmates’ signed up to join us again in November 2021 for the next part of the journey. We also had feedback that we couldn’t have written better if we tried: