We recently held a group meeting with the people from the Office of Housing, Residential Living and Dining. We even grabbed some photos before we left, so take a peek at how we facilitate some of these large meetings.
Melissa Esing and Brittany Madera (me!) co-facilitated the meeting, which meant that we took turns explaining the project, asking questions and clarifying. Caleb Murphy was our scribe, which meant he was constantly busy writing down what everyone was saying.
We kind of hijacked this meeting. It was originally supposed to be an official meeting for their own team, without us. We asked if we could have a few minutes of their time to talk about the project and get their thoughts. The people from the Office of Housing, Residential Life and Dining agreed the set aside 30 minutes for us.
It was way longer than 30 minutes. It was about an hour before we left.
Here’s the thing: That was okay. We felt terrible about sucking up their time, but they were so into it. They weren’t ready for us to leave. If they wanted us out of there quickly, we definitely could have done so. I think they were glad to have something different instead of just another meeting.
That’s something that we’re encountering pretty frequently. Once people start discussing, they want to keep going. Once they’re warmed up and brainstorming, ideas are flying everywhere. With a big group like this, especially a group that is familiar with one another and not afraid to speak up with conflicting ideas, it takes a while to make sure that everyone has said what they want to say.
If you know of a department or office on campus that has a meeting set up for the summer, let us know by emailing email@example.com. We’d like to take over other people’s meetings too!