Saturday, September 19, 2009

Technology fails...and encourages me to blog!

Technology fails … yet connects me globally … and encourages me to blog! Several days ago, I was a participant in a wonderful webinar about facilitation. I didn’t know who else was participating. Thirty minutes into the session, the Internet capabilities failed and we were disconnected. However, through some technological fluke, I remained in a three-way conversation with two participants; one in Melbourne, Australia and one in Cleveland, Ohio – and I in Calgary Alberta Canada. We had an enjoyable and informative chat for five minutes – Where are you? Who are you? What do you do? How do you facilitate? - until we were also disconnected.

How does this experience link with the topic of my blog: facilitation? For months, friends and colleagues have encouraged me to blog. I have hesitated for several reasons. Firstly, why would anyone want to read my ideas and thoughts? Secondly, in my role as a facilitator, I am an objective member of a group of people; helping them to hold productive conversations, asking them what they think, and rarely expressing my ideas about the topic they are discussing. Blogging seems like I would set myself up as the expert; sending ideas out without asking anyone about them. Lastly, in my work as a facilitator, I am normally with groups of individuals in face-to-face settings. A blog seems too impersonal; too isolated; a far cry from watching facial expressions, hearing voice intonations, and observing body language.

How did the webinar techno-flop give me the final push into the world of blogging? Through the webinar, (albeit by a failure!), I unexpectedly conversed with two individuals I did not know. This serendipitous event was fun! It made me think that maybe I could find unexpected conversations through the technology of blogging. As well, I and the two others in the conversation were genuinely interested in what each other had to say. Maybe people will want to read what I write and will respond. After all, I love reading blogs! Maybe sending my blog out into the world wide web will allow me to do what I love - facilitate productive and meaningful conversations –through a different type of medium.

I hope by writing a weekly blog about facilitation, others will comment and we will create a conversation. So, here are my weekly Blog Conversation Questions: What is your most memorable techno-failure that turned out to be a success? What did you learn from it?
Hope to hear from you!