This is a basic ‘How To’ hold your own Solvey Jam! Email [email protected] if you want help!
Now we have done 5 jams we are bringing together what we feel are the optimum ingredients. This was New Delhi, an amazing time but possibly a little large at 80 people which made it 3-4 hours long! So here are some ideas about how to run it right! 🙂
- A Social Space. free and flexible able to expand from a normal table of 5 to a group of 50. These conversations are called jams as they are creative, risky, imaginative NOT for plugging projects, or moaning about the status quo. we have enjoyed roof tops, secluded but open skies with good views of city but no engulfed by it.
- Serve Free Drinks. Gives the hosts a chance to welcome people and demonstrate the idea that they are hear to facilitate not perform and that each person is valued.
- A Chair. Someone who will listen VERY closely to, move forward, link and thank everyone’s contribution. This is vital for creating a trusted environment. ‘Less is More’ should be the chair’s goal. A jam is NOT the place for the chair to indulge their desire for attention, they should be someone who is well trusted among the community and attuned to quiet voices in the room.
- It’s A Safe Space. Let people know that this jam is about being present and listening and that anything they don’t want shared outside the room won’t be. Explain it is not about debating what people say, its about space to express. If you are used to public speaking, try and hold back a bit to leave space for others.
- A Focus. A framework is helpful to ensure we don’t get locked in one way of thinking, generally flowing from reflecting on experiences and gaps to then moving into ideas people have and stories of things which have worked.
- Silence We LOVE silence, it’s a sign that we are thinking, digging deep, really engaging or getting ready to risk our view or idea, embrace the silence, (NB it often happens when moving gears from observation to creation.) let others know it is ok too as most have not experienced it much.
- Speak With Smartphone This has been a GREAT addition, we began using it to record the audio of the session for the video edit but we noticed it really gives the idea of ‘passing the baton’ and also creates a bigger barrier for people interrupting.
- Take a Break Our jams have been between 1h30mins up to 3hrs so be mindful at about an hour if you are not beginning to come into land maybe take a break when you turn the conversation to solutions so people can have a drink, toilet, check phone etc.
- Encourage Connections One of the tangible fruits of a jam is that something gets made, a connection, a plan an opportunity received so encourage people to connect at the end of the conversation
- Have Fun – play music together, do Instagrams on the roof, go for dinner, play a game, turn some music on, tell some jokes and THANK EVERYONE
Some Questions we have found helpful…
What is it like to live here?
What is the one thing you would change here to help this place flourish more fully?
What things have you seen and experienced that you think need changing here?
Have you looked at the numbers? http://socialprogressimperative.org?
What ideas or projects have you seen make real change in peoples lives here?
What do you care deeply about seeing change in the lives of those around you?
If time, money and support were unlimited what would you love to imagine could be different here?
What could we do today that could move these ideas one step forwards?
What drink would you like?
Would you like to sit here?