Gathering guide

Each gathering is a journey: for you, for your team, and for the participants. This guide is for you as a host to make it easier to move through challenges, to know what work and support you can expect at different times, to remember important details, and to make sure we land all the processes that we start. There is a lot of material to work through before a gathering. Fear not! Taking it step by step and depending on your team will make it easier to achieve deep learning, enjoy the process, and show up feeling confident and good on the day of gathering. What you do after a gathering is just as important as the preparation before. Taking time to reflect on the learning experience, following up with your team members and participants when necessary, and sharing notes on the program, ensures that learning experiences get integrated and that all your insights get fed forward into making the program and your teamwork even better. This guide doesn't include practical details for organizing a gathering - so check with your team about all of that. :)


1. Work through introduction material. This will give you an overview of the theme of the gathering, main intentions, building blocks, and agenda. 2. Go through the program, as written, by yourself. Some of the tasks might be new - it is useful to complete them both for yourself and for giving you an insight into what the experience is like for the participants. 3. Make sense of the program for yourself. Try putting into your own words - what is this gathering about? How does it relate to previous gatherings? Why are we doing these tasks? Is there something in your knowledge and background you would like to bring into this gathering?

4. Think about hosting the space. Gather ideas about how you would like to host each of the spaces. What is the purpose, what process will work the best? Go back to the role description, if in doubt what to take into account :) 5. Support on host team! You are more than welcome to post questions to learn from the collective wisdom. Tip: Do not worry about having the right understanding or perfect plan at this point. These questions are to assist you in working with the material and to have a great process as a team. In fact, having some different ideas and connections to the material at this point can help to later retrieve and understand the material better.

Local host preparation-meetings

1. Discuss program and hosting. This meeting is your time as a team to together understand the program, and plan which spaces are to be facilitated, which to be hosted, and how to do this the best way. Bring any questions, doubts, and your brilliant ideas.

2. Plan for flow during the gathering. With a shared understanding of the program and facilitation, you can plan how to give the participants a good experience throughout the gathering. What is needed to make the gathering enjoyable, relevant, powerful throughout?

Before the gathering

1. Do what you need to prepare. What you focus on to host the program best depends on your needs, preferences and interests. Remember that you can support on your team, your buddy, and your Program Lead. 2. Aim for the growth of your participants. You're the one who knows them best, so take some time to think through how you might support and challenge the participants in your group best during this gathering. 3. Reach out to your group. Right before a gathering, we write to our participants to get everyone to look forward to the gathering, and check-in that everyone is able to make it. Consistency is more important than the way you choose to communicate. Some hosts like to send out a message the day before, others send a good morning message. 4. Take care of yourself. Nothing works unless you do. Eat well, get good sleep - you know what you need to show up at your best. You got this!

During the gathering

1. Prioritize meeting your team in the mornings. This meeting is for going over last-minute coordination and flow for the day, aligning on the experience you wish to create for the participants, and making sure the team is in the best state of mind to start the day! 2. Trust the program - and also yourself. The program has been carefully designed, keeping the participants' learning journey in mind. Still, you are the one in the room and the one who knows your participants best. If there is a need to change things up based on the situation, trust your judgement to do so. At the same time, stay mindful that the learning process can be challenging - it is not necessary for the participants to be comfortable and like the tasks at all times. 3. Be aware of the energy and needs in the room. To make sure that everyone feels energized to go through the learning process, make sure there are water, snacks and enough coffee to go around. Offer breaks and energizers when needed, and take up important conversations if the moment calls for it. 4. Keep the participants in focus. At the gatherings, the participants' experience and learning are most important. In addition to your own group, be mindful that everyone feels included in the team room. 5. Support your team. Although you are all busy with your groups, stay mindful in case any of your team members need help. In the same way, ask their help if necessary. 6. Take moments to breathe. There is a lot to focus on during the day. Take moments of rest to be able to sustain your focus. 6. Have fun! As challenging as the weekend can be, it should also be enjoyable! You are among amazing people, and creating something together.

After the gathering - as a team

1. Join your team for a debrief meeting. The exact setup for this is decided locally and facilitated by the Head of Program. Depending on the setup, you will either meet right after the gathering or during a separate day. This meeting is important for you, for your team, for the participants, and for program development.

2. Debrief with your buddy. If either of you needs it, take time after the gathering to talk with your host buddy.

After the gathering - individually

1. Take care of yourself. The gathering experience can be an intense process filled with a lot of learnings. It is important to give yourself some rest after it and to take care of yourself in the ways you need it. 2. Take time to journal and reflect. To be able to integrate new knowledge, and make most out of the weekend's experiences, it can help to keep a journal throughout the program. 3. Follow up with participants - Send a personal message to your participants, and follow up in ways that are necessary. 4. Follow your commitments - Change takes effort and happens gradually. The effort you put into your practice does not only benefit you - it will also be an example for the participants (as well as everyone in the FL organization ;))

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