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May WBON Recap: Open Space Meetings

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The May WBON meeting brought us back to our old haunt – the Malt Shoppe! It was lovely to be back in the charming cafe for this month.

I (Julia) facilitated our meeting. When I presented in September, I spent several hours creating my powerpoint and practicing my talk. This month? No need! That is the beauty of the Open Space format. It allows facilitators to create a conference on the fly.

In Open Space meetings, participants create and manage their own agenda around a central theme of strategic importance. For example, if a town called a public meeting to discuss education reform, the Open Space format would be a great way to structure the discussion.


This is a great tool to have in your back pocket. It is perfect for last-minute crisis management (a presenter cancels, a speaker is out sick), organizing large groups with minimal planning as well as creating an opportunity for directed problem solving and brainstorming.

Here are the basic steps for organizing an Open Space meeting

We had a small group (about 8) but you can use this model for groups as large as 100. Our sessions covered a variety of topics, from how to start a mastermind group to strategies on  following-up with potential clients.

Thanks to everyone who came to May’s meeting. We hope to see you at our special evening event at the Green Goddess on June 18!

One response »

  1. Nice Post, Julia. The topics that emerged were just right. I got a lot out of it.


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