By Jaynie Schultz, co-founder of Retreat Central

I recently participated in a webinar sponsored by SuccessfulMeetings. Twenty five years in the meetings industry means I have great resources!

The topic was “Unconferences and Open Space Meetings”. It was a fascinating seminar about the various kinds of alternative meeting approaches. Mary E. Boone and Kaliya Hamlin presented seven different types of meetings beyond traditional approaches. 

We learned about Open Space, Spectrographs, World Café, Community Mapping, Visual Cartography, Speed Presentations and Idea Galleries. These are all face-to-face methodologies, but there are virtual follow-up opportunities. Each type is designed to bring different outcomes, and one of the most important lessons I learned was about understanding the roles of meeting leaders. 

It is essential that the design of the meeting be handled by people who have a background on content and human interaction while the meeting planning be handled by those who understand logistics and how to make the meeting design work in the space and time allotted. Finally, the folks who will be handling the messaging and broadcast of the meeting are equally essential so everyone understand the goals and outcomes of the gathering. I have been fortunate to have participated in events using almost all of these forms, and they were among the most interesting and productive meetings I have ever attended.

By Jaynie Schutlz, Co-Founder, Retreat Central
Jaynie Schultz created Garrett Creek Ranch with her mother more than 20 years ago. She served as the founding Director of Sales and Marketing and is involved in many non-profit organizations and leadership development programs.

Contact Jaynie Schultz

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