Connecting and engaging large groups

22nd September 2011

I often get asked whether there is an optimim number of people for a meeting. This question usually stems from a concern, by meeting leaders, about having ‘too many people in the meeting’.

I believe the most important thing about a meeting is to have the RIGHT people there. If key people are missing or important knowledge is not represented, then a meeting cannot be productive.

I also believe that it is possible to create an engaging two way dialogue with a large group. This week Ben and I have been facilitating a global summit for 140 people in San Francisco. In this forum each person has connected with every other person, informal conversations have allowed for depth of conversation on hot topics, and the group has learnt together. The team spirit at the end of the 3 days is phenomenal.

I am confident that each person attending the summit got what they needed from the meeting. Each person contributed to the duscussions and was heard, either visually or audio. It felt like an intimate meeting with 140 people.