It’s easy for me to “live in the workshop:” go through the activities and participate in the discussions. The hard part is bringing what we’ve learned and created out into the world. Over the last few months I’ve learned how much planning and thinking goes into conducting a workshop using AoH techniques. Here’s what I’ve learned:
- It’s vitally important to build or join a network of practitioners to provide mutual support, build momentum, and hold you accountable
- Never try to implement a workshop using AoH techniques without a partner. You need someone else to help you think through each step of what you want to do with a group.
- While conducting a workshop or a meeting, you need a partner to share the facilitation, share monitoring the “temperature” of the group, and to collaborate with to make in process adjustments. This is really hard to do on your own.
The facilitators of AoH workshops I’ve attended make it look so effortless. They are sort of like potters. When you see expert potters at the wheel, the clay just sort of rises from a lump and their fingers seem to effortlessly evolve it into beautiful shapes. It’s sort of like that with good facilitators. They seem to let workshops happen, to let the conversation effortlessly evolve into meaning.
Malcom Gladwell said that to become expert at something you have to spend about 10,000 hours or 5 years doing it. Potters become expert by throwing thousands of pots. I am attending this workshop because most of my 10,000 hours of practice lies ahead.