Working Out Loud Circle Guide: Week 11
- Suggested Agenda
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Additional exercises from Working Out Loud
You consider your network as a tribe of people connected by a shared interest.
• Chapter 21 - Creating a Movement
• Chapter 22 - A 25-Year-Old Linchpin
• Video: “The Tribes We Lead” by Seth Godin
10 minutes - What happened since last week?
10 minutes - Exercise: Finding tribes you care about
10 minutes - Exercise: What’s your lemonade stand?
10 minutes - Exercise: A letter from someone in your tribe
15 minutes - The group discusses their tribe
5 minutes - A few things before the final meeting
What happened last week? (10 minutes)
Each person should speak for a few minutes about what they did since the last meeting. Was everyone successful in leveraging other networks?
Exercise: Finding tribes you care about (10 minutes)
Take a few minutes to think of issues you care about. Learning how to make pottery? Restoring a local park? Better food or education for kids? Don’t worry about whether it’s a grand ambition affecting the planet or a small positive change that just a few people care about. Movements come in all shapes and sizes, and they all need linchpins. Make the list as long as you can.
Exercise: What’s your lemonade stand? (10 minutes)
In describing movements in the book, I wrote about a little girl who started a lemonade stand to raise money for cancer research, and wound up creating Alex’s Lemonade Stand, a movement of thousands of lemonade stands and a foundation that raised more than $80 million.
From the list of things you care about in the first exercise, pick one and think of a simple way to start. No need for big events or anything that costs much money. Just a small experiment to make your idea visible and connect people to it. What would be the equivalent of a lemonade stand for your movement?
Exercise: A letter from your tribe member (10 minutes)
To help you make the mental shift from what you could do alone to what your network might do, imagine one of your tribe members writing to you about how she benefited because of the movement. What might she say?
The group discusses their tribes (15 minutes)
There’s no pressure to create a movement in your first Working Out Loud circle, or ever for that matter. But all of the ideas and exercises up to this point, all of your practicing the five elements of working out loud, have prepared you for creating one if you wanted to. As Seth Godin says, it’s a new kind of work, and you’ve been training yourself to do it. Now you can apply those skills to a different, more ambitious purpose.
Whether you ever create a movement or not, the point is that you could if you wanted to. Whatever your version of a lemonade stand is, the steps to building a movement aren’t new techniques but instead a shift in your purpose. When you’re a linchpin, your purpose is no longer about you and what you alone might accomplish but what your network will accomplish together.
Do you agree that you could make this shift if you wanted to? How does that make you feel? What possibilities did you consider in the exercises?
A few things before the final meeting (5 minutes)
At the end of this meeting, the facilitator has three small but important jobs:
1. Schedule the final meeting. Some groups plan a celebratory dinner.
2. Remind people to read the Week 12 circle guide and suggested reading.
3. Ask: “What will you do this week?”
Before the next meeting, keep working on your relationship list and on the contributions you would make for each person on it. Watch the tribes video (again). Look at the range of people leading movements. Why not you?
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Why would anyone want to be part of my tribe?
It’s important not to confuse being a linchpin with being popular. You’re not trying to build a huge following as much as you’re trying to connect people around an idea for positive change. Focus the cause you truly care about, finding others care about it, and helping them make an emotional connection to that cause, including contributing in some way.
Q: I tried it, and no one responded. Now what?
Try again. Think of what you could learn from your first attempt, and try to frame your next experiment so you can learn something different. Most movements involve many iterations over time so you learn what works and what doesn’t. There is no straight-line path. It’s a meander, taking steps here and there, often stumbling as you head toward a vague notion of a destination, a destination that may only become clearer to you’ve tried many things.
Q: All the good movements are already taken.
If it feels like you can’t possibly come up with anything new, watch the “Tribes” video again, and take note of the examples. Your movement doesn’t necessarily have to raise money for a good cause or fight for social justice, though those are good things to do. You can start with something much humbler as long as it’s still meaningful to you. It could be related to your hobby, your personal history, your ambitions, your concerns. The important thing is you’re connecting people to each other and to an idea—and that you take a first step.You can apply all the learning from this experience toward other goals and movements.
Q: I couldn’t think of a lemonade stand for my movement.
Anne-Marie, who founded stemettes.org and is the subject of chapter 22, started her movement with a blog post. You could form a group in [Jive Community] or on Facebook. Even a book club will do. Start small with a simple, cheap experiment. Learn from that first attempt. Then keep trying new things, refining your ideas until you find other people who are members of the same tribe. As more people join your movement, they help shape the idea, spread it, and connect more people while you keep learning.
Remember it is very easy to create a group in [Jive Community]. You were shown how to create your group in Working Out Loud Circle Guide - Week 7 and for this type of group since you are trying to build a movement and get as many people to join you would want to make it an Open Group.
To start click on the pencil icon in the top right hand corner and scroll to the bottom under places and choose Group.
To make sure you maximize visibility to your group make sure you fill out the description and make it an open group. This way more people will be able to find it and join. Also remember to fill in tags so that it increases the changes of the group showing up in search.
Additional exercises from Working Out Loud
Something you can do in less than a minute
Look at alexslemonade.org/about/meet-alex to learn how Alex Scott’s movement started. See how far a movement can go from such a simple start.
Something you can do in less than 5 minutes
Pick one of the items from the list of things you care about. Now imagine you’re the linchpin of a movement related to that item. Allow yourself the luxury of imagining yourself connecting people and making a difference. How does it feel? Try and suspend all fear and doubt. Set a timer, and make sure you use the full five minutes.