It’s all about connecting together, communication and collaboration.
“What’s important?”, asked Tas.
Kathleen thought for a moment, before asserting, “People & Relationships”.
Before arriving in Seattle, I set myself the intention of amplifying connection at the Global Gathering. I prepared to do that by:
- Ordering a box of blank cards to turn into impromptu business cards,
- Remembering to take breaks instead of going to sessions, and
- Getting enough rest before and during the gathering…
- Oh, and designing a bunch of sessions…
- And jumping on all the design calls, plus creating a few of my own
Mission: Accomplished 🏆
If you wish you’d been there, why not interview someone who attended? There’s a list of attendees who are available for that. Just get in touch!
People of Colour Caucus to kick off
Forming a People of Colour Caucus at the start of day 1 set the stage for the rest of the event for me. I’m so grateful to Amber for creating the space, and to all of us for making the time to connect.
Start a POC Caucus at every unconference I attend in future.
Helping organisations be more humane
I led this session on day 1.
- Designing this session reinforced the power of collaboration. With 3 virtual design calls, wellbeing chats, feedback over non-alcoholic cocktails…
- These conversations helped me assess what I was trying to cram into one session. They enabled me to unravel the strands into four sessions.
- Which helped me design & re-design many times on my own too. Thank you to every one of you, especially David Westerlund, Jinna Hagerty & Anna Youngs.
- I used framing questions to focus what I wanted to amplify in my session. That’s how I got to: How might we help organisations be more humane?
- Remembering Tas’ challenge for me to creatively destroy Spiral Journal, I selected what activities to include.
|Prevent burnout||Recover from burnout|
|Organisations||➡ this is the one 😃|
Using this matrix helped me state clearly that I wanted to focus on what organisations could do to prevent burnout.
Learn more about the session, including my invitations: Helping organisations be more humane
Framing questions, like How might we… strengthen… X over time… amidst chaos. Thank you Tonya and Alex, using these helped me whittle down my ideas into the session I led.
Connecting 300 practitioners
- We used Positive Gossip, Spiral Journal, Conversation Cafe and 25/10 Crowdsourcing.
- You can check out what we designed in our storyboard and what we delivered in our slides.
- You might notice differences between the two – because we changed our design last minute!
Build in time to re-design together at the last responsible moment.
Virtual connections on days 2 & 3
I gave virtual tours of the Global Gathering to connect with practitioners online. We enjoyed that a lot. We shared ideas about ways of adapting 25/10 Crowdsourcing for remote use.
Next time, I want to be part of a team to make a dedicated space for distributed connections, with equipment to make it easy for everyone.
How might we sustainably nurture and grow this community?
I led this session with Tasman Papworth, on day 3, to explore ways of belonging after the gathering. Some of the questions we considered:
- How can we make being apart bring us together?
- How do we ensure we follow up on connections made at the event when we return to the rest of our lives?
- How do we help the network become stronger and grow stronger after the event?
- How do we explore and experiment ways of continuing to connect?
- How do we create, build, strengthen, develop and deepen relationships & connections?
- How do we nurture the community that nurtures us?
- How do we keep the learning, growth, evolution alive after this event?
- What’s the min specs to keep this learning alive for us, and for others?
Loved leading Spiral Drawing, my combo of Spiral Journal and Drawing Together. And it’s possible to do it even faster than Spiral Journal. I did mine in a couple of minutes whilst leading this structure.
Reflecting on the gathering, and specifically considering connections, respond to the following invitations using the language of Drawing Together
- Something that surprised me
- Something I’m curious about
- Something I am hoping for
- In my wildest dreams…
Check out the many things Christiaan Verwijs learned from this event too. Oh, and if you missed my day 1 experiences, you can catch those as well.
If you’re interested in learning more about designing workshops using Liberating Structures, check out Delivering outcomes with distributed teams using Liberating Structures.