Yes, it is Tuesday, but I am just now catching my breath from the weekend’s events.
I was involved in a project this weekend where I had a hand in planning a gathering to brain-storm action ideas to take five general goals and make them happen. I was blown away by the response and the enthusiasm I saw from the crowd! It was incredible to see, and I was amazed at the number of new people involved in the process.
Getting the people there was part of my task, and I was overjoyed to hear a conversation between two people – one a long-time participant, and the other a newer person that started with the long-timer saying: “I didn’t expect to see you here.” And the newcomer replying “I received a letter, a phone call and a person invitation – how could I not show up!”
Don’t ya just love it!
In the past, to get these five goals in the works, we would have appointed someone to take on the first task, and after a month or so s/he would have had the first meeting. Then a month or so later we would have started on the next task. So, by the end of roughly eight or nine months we would have gotten all five goals going. We saved ourselves roughly nine months and got them all started on the same day. And, we got people involved who might not have every taken a risk to get involved the old way.
All this happened in a one-and-a-half hour meeting.
Now, not all went as well as hoped, but the problem that one group had focusing brought to light a flaw in the scope of the group – a bit of an identity crisis (what does the word mean and how should we focus?) – and it is something that can be remedied without losing all the ideas that were generated – or the momentum – or those involved.
I have yet to read all the written reports I have received via email (and there are more to come) – but the oral reports given after each group’s first gathering (as part of the overall meeting) were pretty impressive. The weekend’s conversation continued with phone calls and emails to me through much of yesterday.
This event just solidifies these thoughts for me:
- People like to be asked, they want to be asked, and sometimes they need to be asked for them to participate and get involved.
- Without too much in the way of instruction or parameters to follow, it is amazing how broad the scope of the ideas from a group of intelligent people can be. Why box people in with expectations? Let them have the wings to exceed any possible expectations.
- Thinking outside the box really worked in this situation – and I want to find out how to do more of that in my own life and in my work.
How are YOU at thinking outside the box? Below is a problem. Many of you may have seen it, but for those of you who haven’t – give it a try.
In the following picture are 9 dots – recreate this on your own paper. In theory all the dots up and down, and side to side should be the same distance from one-another – but this is close. Make FOUR straight lines without taking your pen or pencil off the paper, and connect all the dots. Remember, only four straight line motions.