Now that the Social Age Safari is complete, we are left with the task of capturing the story and closing the community. Much of the success of the event itself came through the tight choreography and carefully rehearsed facilitation. But all good things come to an end. It’s not the end of the learning, but it’s the end of the formally structured voyage.
Within a Scaffolded Social Learning design, we are creating a series of spaces, the scaffolding itself, which are filled with a set of both formal assets and co-creative conversations.
To be successful, we have to form a coherent community, carry out purposeful learning activities, and share our stories out of the space through personal, co-created and organisational narratives.
During the Safari event, we built our co-created narrative and shared it through a daily newspaper. Alongside this, and both before and after, individuals crafted and shared their own personal narratives.
Our final task is to create the organisational narrative: our meta narrative of the Safari, to incorporate both the individual and co-created stories, as well as a wider narrative track that draws it all together.
In parallel with that, we need to close down some of the community spaces, graduating people into one alumni space. The purpose of this is to avoid a lingering death: Social Leaders are able to form communities according to need, but equally can move on from individual communities when their work is done. The skill is in the Social Capital to engage with, be purposeful with, and narrate separate community action.
Delegates will remain engaged, both through personal contact, but also as part of a wider alumni community: in a Socially Dynamic organisation, these strong social ties will persist over both time and space. Indeed, it’s one of the key benefits of a true Social Learning approach: we build devolved and persistent connectivity that helps us all over time.
Your use of the phrase “closing the community” doesn’t work for me. The community isn’t actually closing–it’s changing. As you said, it’s shifting to an alumni space. I think when a community is formed in the way this one was, the creator/curator doesn’t have the prerogative of “closing” it because it doesn’t belong to that one person. Does that make sense at all?
Makes perfect sense! I was really meaning the space, not the conversation: conversations are independent of both technology and space. I hope we will carry out learning into the Learning Forum, into the wider community. And, of course, when it comes time for the next Safari, we will open the Safari space up again…