Our first Circle Host Forum was a success! Thanks to Henry Edwards, Nanette Alvey, and Kim Crowley for sharing your experiences with us.

Want to learn more about starting your own Ben Franklin Circle? Hear from Circle Hosts. If you weren’t able to join us live, you can listen to the recording here: soundcloud.com/ben-franklin-circles/circle-host-forum-starting-a-circle

Some key takeaways:

On recruitment:

  • Let people know why you’re excited about the project and what your goals are on a personal level
  • Recruit the first few people and then ask them to help recruit more
  • Consider inviting strangers, whether it’s putting flyers around your neighborhood or using a platform like Meetup.com

On finding a venue:

  • You only need to find a home for the first meeting. From there the group can pitch in to host or locate other (often better) venues.
  • Consider matching the venue to the virtue (eg. meeting in a meditation space to discuss Silence)

On carving out the time:

  • Accept that attendance will fluctuate from meeting to meeting
  • Start with what works for you, the host (make it easy for yourself)
  • Be open to changing the meeting time to make it work for most members of the group
  • Doodle.com is great tool for group scheduling

On creating an inviting space for the group:

  • Set some ground rules
  • Practice listening skills
  • Invite everyone to speak, and manage the monopolizers in the group

Listen to the full audio for deeper elaboration on these points and much more.

We’re looking forward to hosting our next Circle Host Forum in February. Submit ideas for topics to BFC Outreach Consultant, Patty Morrissey at benfranklincircles@gmail.com