At the recent stewards gathering I hosted an open space session with this title: 'What's possible beyond the 3 day training?'. I called this session because so often after AoH trainings participants come up to me and say how inspired they are but that they aren't sure how to continue/integrate what they learned. Some ask what to do if they wanted to start making this their work, where could they learn more.
So I was curious to find out form colleagues how they deal with this and what kind of formats people had already been experimenting with instead of 3 day trainings or as a follow up.
Formats were shared, we talked about diffusion strategy, how to spread the practice widely and steward the essence at the same time. On this note Juanita Brown (from World Cafe) shared that their diffusion strategy has been the book, to make resources and stories available. Amy shared about the World Cafe online course, which is an 8 weeks online program with some life sessions and some homework for participants to do in their own time. People are working together and creating projects beyond the course.
We also talked about language.Is training the right word for what we are hosting? In some contexts other language might be needed.
In France they call it workshop. In Brazil they call it encounters. In the European Commission it is not called Art of Hosting but Art of Participatory leadership. Like with everything, adapting to the context seems key.
And here is what I learned about formats:
Instead of 3 day trainings
In Minnesota there have been several experiments (for more info ask Jerry Nagel):
As follow up to the 3 day training
Peer support activities
Some interesting questions to leave with:
Was the 3 day training format designed based on the needs of participants or the needs of the hosts? Could we shift the format towards catering more to the needs of participants?
How to support those who caught the spark to become master hosts?
How can we together be intentional about seeding depth and mastery of the practice in service of life?
How can this kind of work be converged online?
What is the business model for hosting a community of practice?
If you have been experimenting with other formats, please add your comments here.
In Switzerland, we've had several "Practice the Practice" sessions, self-organised between some of the participants and hosts of the training that I attended back in December 2012. I just went to one yesterday and was inspired all over again (and reminded of this Ning hence just signing up). Virtually, we also set up a LinkedIn group as everyone seemed to have a profile and wanted a "safe" space to share ideas/suggestions with people they'd met. While it doesn't replace yesterdays in-person session, it helps to keep the connection going too.
Thanks for this Simone and everyone. As we enter 2014 I'm excited to consider formats for growing the art of hosting in California (glad you are here Simone!)
Hello Simone, and all.
I really like the question. To add to your list of ideas & other formats. In both Scandinavia over the past few years there have been two formats that I am aware of: one is the dojo of practitioners, the other is the learning village.
Dojo comes from Aikido as the place of practice, and the dojo gatherings have started as places where all practitioners could meet to simply learn from each other and talk about topics of interest. The ones I have been attending have been 1-day events with a self-organized agenda, in a loose open-space format to get a sense of what people are interested in;
The Learning Villages I have attended are the ones that happened in Copenhagen around New Year's. They are designed as a 3days village for practioners to meet, share learnings, work on projects that people are involved in.
Both format have been serving their purposes really well of keeping connections active and deepening the learnings by providing spaces of practice. All the best,
I like the different formats and support offered after AoH
Thank you very much Simone!
This harvest is a good inspiration what next steps we can try here in Kenya too ;-)
Thanks Simone, this is a really helpful summary and some great ideas for possible events in the UK.
Lot of wisdom in Simone's post.
I like the focus on participants' (and potential hosts') needs.
The key, as I see it, is: Are we training practitioners? Will the trained practitioners actually practice?
Or are we transmitting a theory they'll never, or rarely use?
Plus: are we transmitting techniques and methods, or a different spirit of seeing and doing things (the "depth and mastery of the practice in service of life" - how beatifully said!)?
Thank you Simone for launching this!
In France we are embarking on our second day of pratcitioners' gathering. The first in mid March focused on the 4-fold practice, AoH and me, the collective and the individual: how have we hosted ourselves and what have been our AoH moments of magic in 2012? How can we nourish AoH so it nourishes us and our practices? And next week we're holding a day on our interior posture when we host. What do we do when we are really present and aligned? Where are our strengths in hosting the process and where can we benefit from adopting a lower profile to allow for emergence? An intimate day on looking closely at our hosting practices and supporting each other in sharpening them. We limit these days to 25 participants, all have attended an AoH 3-day seminar so we have a shared common denominator and language. Happy to contribute to your rich harvest, Simone! Thanks for this...
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