It turned out to be a big picture, brainstorming type meeting. A "let's envision the future we want and figure out how to get there" meeting. A "let's be a national trendsetter" meeting. A "let's talk a lot to sound like we're doing a lot" meeting. A "look at us, we're collaborating with everybody else" meeting. Quite frankly, a "why-in-the-hell-was-I-invited-to-this-meeting" meeting.
The first two hours we talked about how great we were, the things we'd done, the difference we've made, how much we rock. Several people had color-coded slides to prove it.
After lunch we divided into smaller groups which became committees. We then talked about how we could be greater, what things it would take to reach more people and do bigger things. This was a very open discussion, lots of people throwing ideas into the arena.
I know I'm partial, but I had a fantastic idea that I shared with the group. Some people nodded their heads at how good it was, but one guy next to me had the gall to tell me that would never work.
Excuse me? Nobody poo-poo'd on your idea. Besides, if the purpose of this group is to build castles in the sky, why can't mine have solar panels?
Needless to say, I've already sent out three emails to figure out how to make this happen, even if it starts on a much smaller scale. I am a self-declared committee of one.
You don't need a group of executive-directors-of-this-and-that to foster change.