Method

Generating ideas: Open Forum

Created by : Les 7 Sens
Last update : August 21, 2018

Obstacle

Allows the realization of creative meetings, with all people, in all contexts.

Participants create and manage their own agendas (schedules) comprising various working groups, in concurrent sessions, with sub-topics contributing to a common topic of strategic importance or a single topic, without sub-topics.


Benefits:

1. Train people to express themselves individually and collectively.

2. Encourage dialogue within a team and between teams.

3. Facilitate the learning of self-regulation, self-management.


A few tips:

- Choose collectively before the forum takes place the strategic topic and its possible sub-topics.

- Write the topic and sub-topics clearly, formulating them positively and starting with an action verb.

- Use the method only for ¾ of the time of the meeting. ¼ of the time is devoted to the reports of the workshops and the exchanges and reactions of the organizers and participants. 

- To train, we suggest you to focus your first forum on a single topic, without sub-topics and lasting no more than 1 hour. 

Steps

1

Promote a positive mindset for the forum

- Whoever wants to participate can do so (no maximum number of participants).

- What's happening is the best thing that could have happened.

- The best place to start is the "top start."

- When it's over, it's the definitive "top end."

- Everything that is to be said can coexist with its opposite.

2

Structuring the rules: space, time and flexibility

- Specify the characteristics of each space. For example: "subgroup spaces", "sharing space", "lighthearted experimental spaces"...

- Specify the rules of mobility from one workshop to another. For example: "who participates in which groups" "who moves and who doesn't" and "when does each group participate".

- Specify the times for discussion: give time frames for the overall duration (3 to 6 hours), as well as the duration of each workshop (15 to 45 minutes) and each discussion between workshops (10 to 20 minutes).

- Inform participants that they are free to construct their own rules.

- Give participants the opportunity to think for themselves and share their ideas with the group later.

3

Make a call for sub-topics

Sub-topics will be proposed by participants in the context of the overall topic (they may have been planned in advance):

- Each sub-topic leads to one or two parallel workshops. 

- Each workshop produces a result.

- First, the results are communicated to everyone at the end of the workshop orally, and the written results are then sent to everyone at the end of the day.

4

Organize a workshop

There are 7 to 12 people in each workshop.

Its duration is predetermined and it's divided into 3 stages:

1. ¾ of the time is reserved for the people in the group to express their ideas, with or without particular techniques of expression of ideas. The group makes its own decisions.

2. ¼ of the time to summarize everyone's ideas.

3. One or two people are chosen by the group to make a written synthesis, which is handed out to everyone (workshop participants or not).

5

Energize the end of the workshop

At the end of each workshop, a spokesperson takes 1 minute to share the key words of the production of his or her group and a brief discussion takes place with the participants of the other groups. Each group takes turns.

6

Launch the 2nd series of workshops, and then the 3rd, 4th...

All workshops are conducted in the same way unless otherwise decided: for example, a particular method of thinking can be introduced for a sub-topic, or a playful way of working can be adopted.

7

Stack up the synthesis

Synthesis of all the groups are grouped by sub-topics at the end of the forum. A global synthesis is written and distributed to all the contributors, whether they are present or not. The synthesis highlights the results regarding the topic and the nuances brought up in the sub-topic workshops, for each group.

8

Organize the follow-up

The result of the production opens up a follow-up.

The follow-up consists of complementary research, a decision being made or...

Les 7 Sens

Réseau de professionnels pour favoriser les compétences en créativité et l'éthique de l'humain.
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