This is a series of questions you can ask people to complete prior to coming together, use as a paired activity in the beginning or simply give them a few minutes in the beginning to ponder and then share.
We have used this many times when a group is first forming, in conference settings where people who not know one another yet and even in intact teams who have worked together for some time.
Below are the questions:
- How did I get here?
Many people will answer literally – “by airplane, by car, etc” Decide before you turn them loose if you want to give them more specific instructions. I am typically looking for a bit of history.
- What do I want to have happen?
Typically, I am looking for ‘have happen at this meeting, this retreat or this conference’
- What is the current situation?
- What am I willing to do?
- How will I know when it happens?
- What expertise or experience do I have that others might find useful?
I have found this question to be particularly valuable. Even with people who know one another, inevitably something important is discovered here.
Have you used this kind of introduction approach? How did it work for you? What are some other approaches to begin that has been helpful?