We all have more than our fair shares of invitations to meetings. Some meetings are more “relevant and important” than others. Before committing to attend, most folks want to know WIIFM (What’s in it for me?). At a minimum, We want to know the topic/theme . . . even better if we can know who else is coming.
I’m a serial “inviter” . . . Maybe I think too much, but I frequently think of current issues and opportunities and feel compelled to start conversations about them with people who care . . . so I issue invitations to anyone and everyone within sight. I know that whoever comes will be the right people because they care enough to show up.
It occurred to me that not everyone is choosing to show up for the right reasons . . . It may not be all about the topic . . . It could be:
- You are coming because other people you know, like, and trust are attending
- You want to be seen amongst this group of people
- Then there’s THIS . . . You decide to attend because of the potential for “meetings after the meeting”
Any time any group of people gathers, this potential for meetings after the meeting exists.When humans connect – engage with each other, it’s always a veritable smorgasbord (Marketplace) of ideation. Of course, we all came this meeting to explore THIS topic, so there’s not time to explore other topics, so the group self-organizes to meet elsewhere at another time. Often, this manifests with a simple: “Let’s have lunch together to talk about this!”
If you’re the inviter and you want to optimize your event, consider a registration process that includes listing who’s registered . . . even better, do it in a place where there’s ample space for participants to linger after the meeting (Hotel Lobby).
Below is a story I posted on Facebook about my little slice of Heaven AKA #owenhollow
A few weeks ago, I scheduled my annual “Owen Hollow Spring Cookout” to be this Saturday 5/18. I invite everyone I know . . . and some people I don’t know . . . like ALL of the neighbors. This will be 2nd Annual. I mailed invitations to all the neighbors and learned yesterday that it was well received.
“Yesterday, I came home to #owenhollow 30 minutes earlier than usual. When I turned on Waller Road, I saw neighbor Rick in his car talking to neighbor Rickie. I’ve lived here 3 years and have waved to Rickie 1000+ times, but we have never talked – until yesterday. Rick told me he was coming to the cookout and then drove away. Rickie and I had an awesome conversation – He welcomed me as “Family” in our very special place (Waller Road). He said that all of the neighbors were so happy to have me in the hollow – Betty says she can set her clock by my comings and goings – 6 AM and 5 PM – Rickie assured me that we would all keep our neighborhood safe. He also told me that all of my neighbors had been sneaking up to Owen Hollow when I was at work for the past 3 years . . . watching my progress and thanking me for doing such a fine job cleaning it up. I knew this was a very special place the first time I saw it and feel SO lucky to call this my home, especially now that I’ve been claimed as “family” – Thankful!”