One-on-Ones

17 January 2008

The chief glory of organizing is the one-on-one. It’s one of the main reasons I like this. I like the “soft arts of organizing,” even though the hard arts probably come more naturally.

Unfortunately, my one-on-ones have sucked lately. I mean, they haven’t flowed, and there must be all sort of obvious opportunities for the exploration of self-interest that I’m just not seeing. It’s never a good sign when you’re twenty minutes in and struggling for directions to go, and hurting for places to share something of yourself in the conversation, turning it into more of an interview and less of a real conversation (which is what I, my organization, and the world really need more of).

Over the summer, I had this down. I shoot for between 30 and 40 minutes for an initial one-on-one with a layperson, and I had them down to 35 minutes almost every time, and was getting everything I needed, building a relationship, and had time for a joke besides. Now they start to struggle after about 20 minutes.

I mainly just need to be doing more of them. I’m averaging under a dozen a week, and I’d like to average something closer to 15, and with the right people.

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