Even good things end

When it comes to our gatherings, far too many of us are that horrible person who never really breaks up with anyone but just stops calling. That person may tell himself that he is being kind or low-key. But guests, like romantic partners, deserve a proper breakup. make sure you plan the ending

Things are better with controversy

In so many gatherings, we are so afraid of getting burned that we avoid heat altogether. There is always risk inherent in controversy, because things can go very wrong very quickly. But in avoiding it, we waste countless opportunities to truly connect with others about the things they care about.

The Danger with sponsors

Sponsors are there to amplify what you can do with an event. However, the moment the host of the event is not also the person funding the event, the event has two masters: the host and the sponsor. And their interests are not always aligned. This misalignment can arise throughout your gathering, but it is […]

Gatherings start with the invitation

Your gathering begins at the moment your guests first learn of it. This may sound obvious, but it’s not. If it were obvious, hosts wouldn’t fail to host the pregame for their gathering as often as they do. In my experience, host often think of their event as beginning when you call the meeting to […]

A successful gathering is

One measure of a successful gathering is that it starts off with a higher number of host-guest connections than guest-guest connections and ands with those tallies reversed, far in the guest-guest favour.

Don’t abdicate power

The hosts I guide often feel tempted to abdicate that power, and feel that by doing so they are letting their guests be free. But this abdication often fails their guests rather than serves them. The chill approach to hosting is all too often about hosts attempting to wriggle out of the burden of hosting. […]

Over-including can mean shallow connections

With certain types of gatherings, over-including can keep connections shallow because there are so many different lines through which people could possibly connect that it can become hard to meaningfully activate any of them. Excluding thoughtfully allows you to focus on a specific, underexplored relationship.

Isn’t exclusion the enemy of diversity

You might ask: In a world where exclusion becomes OK, aren’t we moving backward? Isn’t exclusion in gatherings something we’ve been fighting against for years? Isn’t exclusion, however thoughtful or intentional, the enemy of diversity? she says no, that exclusion makes sure that the gathering is on target and purposeful. Diversity for diversity sake isn’t […]

Specificity is crucial

Specificity is a crucial ingredient. The more focused and particular a gathering is, the more narrowly it frames itself and the more passion it arouses.

The Freedom to Assemble is a Foundational Right

In democracies, the freedom to assemble is one of the foundational rights granted to every individual. In countries descending into authoritarianism, one of the first things to go is the right to assemble. Why? Because of what can happen when people come together, exchange information, inspire one another, test out new ways of being together.

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