Peeling the Onion – To figure out how to attract the greatest number of participants to a meeting: using Option Solving?

I met with my acquaintance a couple of days later for an early breakfast to discuss her chosen option. We intended to peel the onion on that choice and help her identify the most interesting person as a guest at her forthcoming meeting, in order to attract a good number of participants.

We initially developed a suitable question: see Latest Example.  As part of this activity, we came up with three key considerations that would help provide the right context.

With our question in place, we moved to produce two yin and yang “bookends,” which turned out to be “Focus on someone special within participant group” and “Bring along the biggest VIP in our community (Mayor?).” In both cases, you will see we indicated key reasons for not pursuing either, even though they are both clearly options.

These two bookends would now spark us to come up with at least five new plausible sub-options. Our bookends would provoke our intuitive minds into high creative gear: that’s why option solving is so valuable. It stimulates more creative solutions than traditional problem solving inhibits.

You can see in the Latest Example, how she came up with five alternative options (the minimum suggested): one of which was: “Invite the President of the Local Community College” who she knew quite well.

At this point, I turned over our option solving picture and started to talk about some other topics of mutual interest in order to induce emotional distancing. Pressing conversation about other issues provided another key moment for her intuitive mind to subconsciously consider her five alternatives. Ten minutes later, we came back to her picture. She knew, from the first time around, to quickly scan the contents and then trust her intuitive powers to make an optimum choice.

Once this was done, she was satisfied with her choices to date and therefore willing to consider Next Steps while the whole issue was at the forefront of her mind.  She felt she had the solutions that she struggled to see earlier and so was ready to map out her approach from here forward. She was pleasantly surprised at the numbers of people who turned up. Her meeting was a great success.

If you have an example of your own, please share it with this blogger, through the COMMENTS area.  Thanks Option Solving. (NOTE: Next posting in 2 weeks: “Best option for dealing with a disruptive team member and turning him/her into a more productive member” Let’s have your COMMENTS or go to to connect with the blogger.)



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