Charles Vogl, renowned for authoring The Art of Community and Building Brand Communities, and his work at Google, believes that opening up requires being in a space where there are few people to interact with, allowing you to engage with those around you better.
“They have this default assumption that if we want to get a group together we should get everybody into the same place, be that a virtual room or a table. That doesn’t work because it means we have to manage too many relationships at any given moment, that precludes the intimate experience, the vulnerable conversations, that actually develop relationships.”
He shares his concept of the campfire experience, which encapsulates intimate experiences with people where everyone is contributing to a conversation and everyone is heard. Being in a small group also encourages colleagues to discuss matters irrelevant to their work, and that are more personal to them. These elements are what enable meaningful relationships to form in an era marked by widespread loneliness.
Embracing the principles of campfire experiences and small group interactions allows for the development of emotional connections, trust, and empathy, which are crucial in remote work environments. Create a safe space for workers to share how they feel about things outside of the office, and keep those spaces small.
Charles made it clear when he stated “Stop pretending that collaborative conversations virtually in rooms bigger than five people, is helpful.” He expressed that keeping groups to five people ensures that everyone can effectively participate in conversation and interact with one another, creating that intimate campfire experience.
Dive into Charles’ insights further by watching the full workshop here.
Interact and engage with thought leaders and industry experts like Charles Vogl in Covve’s upcoming workshop, Healthy Habits of Connection, on October 17th, and take your relationship building practices to new heights.
Written on 13 Oct 2023.