I had brunch with a friend from New York Steve Harrington, yesterday.
We swapped facilitation stories, and had a go at one of my favourite improv activities – two person drawing – see left. Steve talked about fear and fascination: when I’m doing something that truly engages me (like facilitating) I will often experience a mixture of these emotions – and growth happens when fascination leads me to take risks to explore new territory. So much really valuable learning happens outside our comfort zone. I also think a lot of training fails when the trainer settles inside his or her own comfort zone rather than sharing the adventure with participants.
We also wandered into Speakers’ Corner. A wild marketplace of ideas. I loved the contrasts, for example between the speakers with huge crowds and those with none. I quite liked the approach of the guy I incompetently photographed (right) who simply wandered round with a sandwich board saying “It’s now or never, come listen to me, I’m very clever, I know everything.” (Another late-middle-aged gentleman walked around claiming the secret to eternal youth). Perhaps not a million miles from the variety in the blogosphere.