I’m grateful to have learned World Cafe many years ago from Juanita Brown, David Isaacs, Meg Wheatley, Toke Moeller, and Bob Stilger. These were people who were practicing simplicity of guided connection in form. I’m grateful to have continued to learn and practice with many others over the years. Again, connection with some shape — flow within some river banks.
Last week I co-hosted a simple cafe that was centered on continuous improvement. With a group of people that work in a rather complex operational context. We offered this focus and format with intent to cultivate improvement energy and commitment.
Something like this.
- A little setup about this format for Cafe, moving tables, learning with the people in front of you, contributing and listening for insights, etc.
- Round 1: When have you experienced contributing to or participating in an improvement? What do you think you need to stay in that mind and heart? (Yes, this is a lot to ask for a 20 minute round, but our point was to lift up the energy of improvement — not complete fixes.)
- Popcorn harvest to hear a few snippets (not from everyone).
- A little set up about the courage to “disrupt” and to “start”.
- Rounds 2 and 3: Is there a “disrupt” and a “start” that you need to improve your leadership, in the name of continuous improvement?
- Post-it Note harvest from each to the wall. Some slight groupings. Reflecting out loud as a group on what they see in the post-it’s shared.
Grateful for such simple format to bring such important learning forward — and of course, behind it all, to restore and reclaim formats for learning with heart and belly together.