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OST Facilitator: Ainsley Nies

(co-author of Liftoff )

An AgileOpenFlorida session

  • The room was assembled in a circle
    • Ainsley continuously walked around the circle
    • Explained this draws your eye around to see people

Harrison Owen

  • the generating force behind OST (Open Space Technology)
  • Harrison held that the circle is geometry of human communication
  • While traveling to West Africa Harrison noticed that people just sat down in circle and discussed issues when they came up
  • Harrison put on formal conferences and noticed that the most juicy conversations were not with the speaker but where when people got together in separate ad hoc sidebar discussions
  • He then thought wouldn't it be great to have a meeting format like that

Principles of OST

  • on posters around the room
  • Whoever comes are the right people
  • Whatever happens is the only thing that could
  • It starts when it starts
  • It's over when it's over

Define sessions

  • Person writes on paper what session they want to host and talk about and announces it to everyone along with their name
  • Person then goes to a global board and picks a time slot for their session
  • People initial sessions that they are interested in attending (not committment ­ just indication of who is interested)

Everyone shares the passion for being there

  • People show up to session so means they're interested in it
  • If people do not sign up for your session it could me you are a visionary, or there are other really great sessions going on and even if you want you can sit by yourself and think about your idea ­ bottom line is you have choices
  • Session starts when starts ­ curiousity and creativity do not work on the clock
  • Its over when its over ­ when session is over but not done talking about topic ­ you have choices ­ want to continue, doesnt mean discussion is over

Law of mobility and responsiblity


  • if not learning or contributing where you are then find some other place where you can ­ you can walk out when someone is talking in a learning environment, contribute to someone elses learning, go provide input and leave and go to other session if you want, own learning and contributing to learning for others
  • Wherever it happens is the right place. In social media people just showed up and did it
  • Be prepared to be surprised, no agenda or topic, don't have any “should happen like this”, allow yourselves to be surprised and you get a lot more out of it

Bumble Bees and Butterflies

  • both are symbols (models) of OST participants
  • bumble bees ­ zoom around and cross pollinate ­ move across topics and something you heard in one session may be applicable in another session
  • butterflies ­ create space drawing people in ­ even silence may draw people in
  • session host - take notes, doesnt mean host has to take notes but see that notes are taken, email the notes
aof2014openingnotes.txt · Last modified: 2014/07/08 08:24 by admin