Last week, we hosted our very first World Café breakfast club concept, Ideate. It was a morning of coffee, creative chit-chat and delicious food from the team at KitschnBake. Since moving into our new office, we wanted to create a flexible and welcoming space for clients and visitors. Somewhere where we can host events, workshops and informal meetups in a relaxed setting. And the purpose of Ideate is to do just that, by bringing friends together for food and thought.
Eat, Create, Ideate
To ideate is to form ideas and concepts. It’s a design thinking term for generating ideas and solutions to problems using techniques such as brainstorming. And what better way to facilitate creative conversations than over some tasty food and coffee? Since introducing our breakfast club concept over on the blog back in September, we’ve had some really positive feedback. Our initial idea was to start the day by providing food for thought and getting the creative juices flowing. Good coffee, good food, great company.
Firstly, we welcomed our guests in with some delicious Sacred Grounds coffee and mingled over an amazing breakfast spread. The team at KitschnBake provided some incredible edibles. These included a fresh fruit platter, handmade scones, cold pressed juices and mixed berries and oats. A large part of Ideate is bringing people together over nutritious food, and the KitschnBake team helped us to do just that!
Using the World Café Format, we then facilitated an informal design thinking workshop with Ali as host.
What’s the World Café Format?
A World Café or Knowledge Café is a creative format for sharing knowledge and facilitating creative conversations. Following 7 design principles, these conversational cafés take the format of relaxed group discussions with an allocated host. After a quick introduction by the host, each table has a 20-minute conversation on a specially crafted topic. Thoughts and ideas are captured throughout using graphic tools such as post-it notes, drawings and images. After each 20-minute table conversation, members then move to another table for another ‘round’ of conversations. And at the end of the session, the groups finally come together to ‘harvest’ their findings collectively.
Creating a ‘special’ environment is a really important aspect of the World Café, and the AM office felt like the perfect place to host the workshop. In our office fit-out, we strove to create a welcoming, inclusive and chilled out space for working, collaborating and relaxing.
Exploring Questions that Matter
One of the basic design principles of any World Café is to investigate important questions, questions that truly matter. So, to set the context for Ideate, we decided to hone on a key theme. Something we would all have in common; a tangible, real-life concern. For our first session, we picked the theme of technology and its impact on society, a topical issue which every participant could relate to. We then framed three questions for each ‘round’ of the world café to facilitate dynamic conversation:
Question 1: How has technology changed the workplace?
Question 2: How will technology shape the future of work?
Question 3: What’s the impact of this on society?
This series of questions triggered some really fascinating and in-depth discussions. From automation, to imposter syndrome and issues of communication, we identified some real-world problems and discovered some captivating insights during each of the conversational rounds.
The Main Takeaway
All in all, we thoroughly enjoyed hosting Ideate and using the World Café Methodology. We particularly enjoyed the opportunity to move around tables and hear a variety of perspectives. The flexibility of the World Café format enables guests to meet new people and to foster new connections in a cosy setting. Plus, it was a fun way to start the day by capturing ideas and creative conversations.
We’d like to thank the KitschnBake team for providing some amazing food and to all our guests that made it along. If you missed out this time, we plan on hosting Ideate breakfast clubs every few months, so keep an eye out on our social channels and monthly newsletters for any updates. And if you have any feedback about how we might improve the next Ideate, or if you’d like to get involved, do let us know! We’d love to create a collaborative and informal platform that fosters creativity and community.