I believe that we have never been more technologically connected and yet humanly felt so disconnected. How does this make you feel? I find the concept alarming in the context of innovation and the personal development of our society. One of the things that gives me the most pleasure and value in my work and my life is connection with others. Everyday I am inspired by listening to random strangers and their perspectives on life.
A year ago whilst on a blind date my dinner companion mentioned the whiteboard he kept in his living room and how on a Saturday night alone, or with a couple of willing mates, they would come together, over wine, and problem solve social issues that they felt passionate about. I was immediately in love with the idea (not the date). That next morning I found myself in the Officeworks checkout paying for my very own whiteboard. A month later we launched Wine & Whiteboards in my living room with the diversity of eight random strangers.
I cannot articulate in written word the unbelievable value this little passion project has bought to my life, my personal development and my business.
How do we better intergrate refugees into society? How do we give disadvantaged youth the same networks and opportunities as affluent kids? Why as a society are we so easily offended by the words and actions of others? How do we stop girls from loosing their confidence? How do we avoid the political situation that has occurred in America from happening in Australia and UnTrump ourselves? Why is there so much domestic violence against women in Australia.
These are just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the topics that matter to people.
Wine & Whiteboards (W&W) has grown quickly with demand for this forum being called on by blue chip business to build their teams to co-working spaces wanting to use it as a platform for connection and building problem solving skills. W&W is even heading to NYC in May and given the current political climate I think the outputs will be thought provoking.
My nature has always been very action orientated I’m always searching for the outcome to ensure the value. When we started W&W I kept saying to my blind date, and now good friend Rob, this is about us solving one of these big issues that our participants put forward. That’s what matters, that’s our why. I was wrong, that would be a bonus but it became very clear that that was not what this was about. The clarity as I always advocate came in the action and the more we ran W&W the clearer it became.
Wine & Whiteboards connects random strangers through a unique and comfortable experience where they listen to what matters to others and appreciate what informs others perspectives.
It creates understanding, breaks down barriers, enables empathy and leaves people asking the question, five hours later, I’m still not sure what anyone here does because the conversation is so damn good.
We exist to broaden thinking, shift perspectives and create human connection.
Don’t take my word for it, read about the experience of one of our most recent participants.
If you believe like me that we need more human connection to innovate and grow I challenge you to help me breakdown barriers, diversify thinking and create real human connection fuelled by a little wine. Let’s look at how we can bring Wine & Whiteboards to your team or community.
Last week I started full time for eight weeks in the first Australian Antler Cohort in Sydney. Antler is an incubator program that focuses on creating the next wave of tech companies. They had over 1000 applicants but accepted only 71 amazing humans of which I was fortunate enough to be one. Some may consider this a success but at the end of week one, I found myself questioning if this is success, why do I feel so uncomfortable?