Seth Godin wrote an interesting blog post today about conferences
In which he says about attending conferences: “I focus on what I do remember: the engaged conversations. The one on one discussions of what someone is working on. Helping a friend design a book cover or solve a thorny entrepreneurial problem. Sneaking out to go to a taco stand for lunch with a very cool CEO… These are the reasons it is worth going. (At least for me). So do more of that, I think.”
So . . . Instead of attending the keynote speeches (of which he is often one) or the “talking Head sessions” which are always available on-line after the event, Seth feels like he gets his biggest bang for his buck (and time) using the days at the conference connecting with PEOPLE . . . individually!
This describes EXACTLY what happens in an Open Space technology meeting/conference.
The whole thing is exactly that . . . a format designed to put people together around a theme.
The origin came from the same observations about typical conferences Seth makes with the realization that most folks get more out of the ‘Coffee & lunch Breaks” than the predetermined agenda.
I’m coordinating one of these events for local Nashville REALTORS and local businesses to come together around the theme of leveraging local business relationships to fortify Nashville’s economy . . . Here’s a link to the invitation.
Nashville Real Estate Consortium
In this event, I’ve combined a trade show with the main event (instead of being relegated to a space away from the action) and have invited the vendors to PARTICIPATE fully in the conference. Much better for them because at most conferences they twiddle their thumbs while the participants are listening to the talking heads and then get a massive of flood of people at the breaks – too many to effectively engage any single person in meaningful dialog.
This format/methodology was “created/Discovered” by my Father Harrison Owen in the mid 80’s . . . He never trademarked it because his belief is that this self-organizing concept is something that happens naturally . . . and who could possibly claim ownership of something that has happened naturally since the beginning of time?
My whole life is structured this way . . . More interpersonal connections . . . and fewer talking heads.
If you’ve read this far . . . thanks for reading.
Clear your schedule to be in Nashville May 5, and join us (as a participant) if you wanna see how it works 🙂
I think you’ll be surprised by the impact of this conference on the community and on your life personally.
Seth Godin’s writings provide continued inspiration as I continue to build my little new real estate firm Pareto Realty. We are gaining traction and momentum as more and people are discovering How what we’re doing is different . . . It’s an innovation most folks don’t “get’ til they hear it first hand – personally – like, at the coffee breaks . . . Kinda ninja 🙂