Speed dating agenda
As an antidote, Robert Chambers, in his superb book Participatory Workshops, proposes the "buzz": "So easy. Invite participants to buzz with others next to them--about what has just been covered or done, an issue that has arisen, the agenda.
The immediate wake-up often includes learning by talking." Speed dating takes these conversations a step further by focusing on a specific topic of interest and by recognizing that individuals fill different roles in many conversations.
A show of hands revealed that all felt that they had made useful business contacts.
No complaints were heard about being sleepy from the spectacular lunch.
The primary workshop goal of making new matches largely was accomplished during the breaks.
The experienced mangers lined up against one wall (think an 8 grade dance), and then the inexperience managers selected one for a conversation. Instructions were given to talk about either the same topics (since different people might have different views) or new ones. After a second period had passed, this conversation was closed, and the speed mentoring ended.Abstract Most Extension educators seek new ideas for organizing more exciting and animated workshops and conferences.This article describes structured networking activities (also know as "speed dating") that succeed in enlivening meetings, strengthening networking, and improving learning.Extending these unstructured networking periods provides one way to improve these events.
But another, underutilized means for strengthening them is by carefully integrating structured networking periods into the conference schedule.At Oregon State University we have begun using variations on the "speed dating" model (just another name for structured networking) in a wide variety of settings. Sessions in conferences and workshops, whether keynote addresses, panels, or town hall meetings, share a common characteristic: one person at a time speaks, and everyone else is expected to listen.