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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.
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 speed mentoring approach was successful in sharing knowledge among farmers' market managers with different levels of experience.
Farmers and chefs used a more classic speed dating approach to forge new relationships and make deals.
Admit it--you wish your workshops and conferences were livelier.
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.
The primary workshop goal of making new matches largely was accomplished during the breaks.
At the most recent conference, the organizers inserted a speed dating session in the dreaded after-lunch slot on the agenda.
Although plenty of us have turned to meeting someone over cyber space, there's still something to be said about sitting down to meet potential partners in person.
And actually, there are plenty of themed speed dating nights in New York City that will ensure you have at least one thing in common with everyone else in the room.