DAO Compensation Sustainability ⏳

I think charging the ecosystem rounds with a fee with operational/management and possible grant curation services is a great idea!

Exactly, makes sense to charge them.

We have the same vision for the GIA, we want to become a Ecosystem/Cause grant curation service provider.(Hopefully we will have permissionless services when Grants 2.0 kick in).

For the Cause rounds we could do it pro bono, if the cause it altruistic in nature.

I believe It would be a natural move to try to generate some revenue especially seeing the growing number of ecosystems. We could also be kinda overwhelmed by that growing number in the near future. :slight_smile:

We should talk more on Monday during the Grants Tactical and see what our peers want.

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I’m not a voting member, but very interested in how the DAO responds to this question. I am grateful to @owocki for raising a challenging but necessary topic of conversation.

Reading through the governance process documents, it describes a policy for managing conflict of interest that seems to apply to any employee of the DAO who also holds governance tokens when addressing compensation questions:

This raises a practical question: How many Stewards are also employees of the DAO? Are there enough Stewards who don’t have a conflict of interest on this question to be able to reach quorum?

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The main threat to the evolution of DAOs(in my view) just like any other organization are parasitic behaviors. Basically corruption + greed + manipulation.

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saw this on twitter today + felt it was an interesting analogue for another DAO at scale. (though MakerDAO isnt exactly comparable to Gitcoin in many ways - they are DEFI, Gitcoin is public goods. they have a more sustainable financial model than Gitcoin does. and they are a few years older than Gitcoin.). but i still find it compelling because it helps me think of what gitcoin would look like at scale.


I’m strongly supportive of having a smaller group that creates a safe & productive container for this conversation. It should have someone representing people ops (Loie or someone on her team), and someone else who knows the financials of the DAO well (Kyle or Llamas). Such a group would start with listening + then perhaps through building consensus eventually recommend policy back to the DAO.


Wow, I actually wanted to bring that issue up, but didn’t want to make more enemies :smiley:

My take (as a a steward), I should not be voting on the DAO Ops budget (I think I might have :thinking: ) but I am fine to vote on all other budgets. The DAO Ops budget does compensate me (as a contributor I currently make 1850 GTC a month), but no other workstream compensates me.

The conflict of interest clause is one we should remind stewards of, as I think most WS leads are also stewards with a fair amount of GTC delegated to them.

IMO, no one steward has the ability to approve or deny a budget on their own though. It usually takes three of more (at a minimum) to really move the vote (if they went against all other stewards/community members).

To be fully transparent here: future and further compensation will be negotiated here for all your awesome work, and you consult on multiple workstreams so your case is actually an example on why it is important to keep on refining this clause, there’s always so much context. Very happy that a first paragraph on this made it into v3 now though.

And yes, one steward cannot turn the vote but ofc they do influence others. Having power spread out over more non-contributing stewards would be a good thing, but then we ofc also need to work on how to incentivize them.

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+1 on this. It should be more than just a group strategy call, it should be a taskforce that looks at all the salaries but starts with an intake meeting.

Looking at these options only option b) makes sense to me (I like that one a lot). Although I know it is just a ‘conversation starter’, it is within the domain of people ops to provide some guidance here and I hope some more options can come up to equalize pay first before we eg go for a dao-wide reduction or potentially ask some of most high context (often highest performing) contributors to go to 1/2 time.

I think what Saf describes here is a realistic scenario…

… and we should at all cost avoid a talent bleed of the DAO.
I personally can live with a paycut but at the same time I believe in fair treatment of all.
Measuring of people’s performance is not easy but this discussion shows how important it is to at least establish some standards (urgently) we can adopt dao-wide, and we’ve been talking about this for a long time.

Salaries are pretty random from my view and in a bear market tensions around this will probably only rise. I’ve seen private and public discussions around what some people make and I’ve seen other workstreams being very good at hiding how much some people actually make. There’s a lot of work to be done here and great to see that we’re broaching this topic.

Some final thoughts after reading up on all of the above, looking back at the original Qs:

No, coming from Giveth I can be clear about this. :slight_smile: We all made the exact same (extremely low) salary, no matter how hard or long you worked or how efficient you were. It really was painful at times, for many. People should always be compensated for what they do. No system is perfect but we should try to find a balance.

Probably yes. All salaries should be revised, this should by the way also include legacy rules with vesting plans from holding employees. This is a very unbalanced situation that should also be addressed while we’re at it.

We should pay the correct market value but take into consideration our own financial situation and adapt where necessary, esp. for people who are overpaid or whose pay has never been evaluated by people ops in terms of what makes sense in the market, performed hours, peer review etc. There’s no dao-wide system in place here at the moment.

We do not have one but afaik it is in the works, this was in people ops’ OKRs last season and it is in there again for this season.

Let’s start by drafting one, take context into account and go from there.

Does not exist/is not consistent/unknown.

Have a clear purpose and intents from which a lot of logic can come to make easier decisions, and a strong people ops team to create policies that makes sense to all workstreams and continually evolve given our own ever-evolving context.


This is something Workstream leads have asked for from the stewards. More specifically, “We want to know what the DAO budget is, and then we can determine how to spend those funds amongst us”

We are starting to explore a few options to help remove ambiguity here. Something like a sliding scale of compensation make-up (ie, what % is in stables and what % is in GTC) based on GTC price.

And then also taking a look at treasury sustainability, to ensure that we have (ideally) 10+ years of runway. This may not be possible with the current market, but we are planning to be a project and DAO that stands the test of time.

This was a change more than a year ago (nearly 2 years ago). We instead created a grant to fund the core development. It too has now been made inactive and we have no inflows to supplement development. This is something we have started to evaluate if we should change. Here is one idea for example.

Thank you Kris - there’s been so much talk on this the last couple weeks but I do want to give it the grace of responding on the forum where everyone can benefit from it! So:

Although I know it is just a ‘conversation starter’, it is within the domain of people ops to provide some guidance here and I hope some more options can come up to equalize pay first before we eg go for a dao-wide reduction

The best path forward I see here is a custom competency/skill leveling framework. It is a matrix that looks like this:

But ours would be tailored to match the competency that is most important in web3 and Gitcoin specifically. Typically an org uses this matrix to determine a salary offer before a hire is brought on. But in the instance where our pay is not equal thus far, I think using our same scoring mechanism that we use for new hires would be the most legitimate way to evaluate current contributors as well.


Just fyi this was not in the People Ops OKRs last season - you are right that it is now though! Very excited to be supported to have the space for this service, and to make this comp policy. Lots of fresher discussion on it here.

I’ll prob continue the rest in the other post^