Open Space Quotes from Participants, Clients and Facilitators

  • John Engle posted to the OSLIST some comments from Open Space facilitators in Haiti:
Open Space, eliminates the spirit of inferiority. The playing field is leveled. We’re all equal. I have begun using it with my groups.
Open Space has removed tradition bound notions within my attitudes. I am living the spirit of a popular educator. Each of us are learning, one from another.
There is not a better method. I’ve been facilitating groups all of my adult life. Meeting facilitation is my life. I’ve been writing a book on the subject. Experiencing Open Space is causing me problems. I have had to rewrite every single chapter in my book. Open Space is forcing me to rethink my assumptions and practices.
With Open Space, there are not ideas that remain hidden or unspoken. Everything emerges.
I can’t imagine that there could be a better method for enabling a group to discover its potential.

  • The 2 days open space that followed were a success, a miracle in the words of the CEO and he added that 3 years ago they received a thick report from ___ (a famous international strategic company meeting in Israel) that cost $1.5milion, and they could implement a little. Now we produced something much better in the cost of 1 page of their report, and it seems that we can implement it all. –Avner Haramati and Tova Averbuch, Oganim consulting network, mailto:avnerh@inter.net.il and mailto:averbuch@post.tau.ac.il

  • After an event in an aboriginal community in northwestern Canada, an elder told me, “This is the first many of our people have met like their ancestors did.” –ChrisCorrigan?

  • It was a great meeting. We were told that the professors who were sitting with us for all three days, the topic was Business / Education in 2010, never stay more then an hour on any conference. –Dr. Elena Marchuk, Regional Development Center Ceres, Novosibirsk, Siberia, Russiamailto:marco@mail.nsk.ru

  • If you ever want to know if OS works in Japan, based on my experience, IT DOES. I have trained a Japanese colleague to be able to run Open Space meetings, and he already has two requests from our sales managers to run OS meetings with their teams on how to improve their sales volume. –Jimbo Clark mailto:jimbo@ltl-j.com

  • While I was into my introduction one of the older bishops exclaimed, “Hey, I know this! It’s baraza!” An immediate discussion ensued in which several remembered that it had been a key element in their village culture. All noted that it is no longer used except perhaps in some very remote places. So open space is deeply imbedded in African Culture, at least in Kenya. –Michael M Pannwitz mailto:mmpanne@snafu.de and www.michaelmpannwitz.de


  • One of the -hoorays- from a recent Open Space is that a manager heard a lot of feedback about how the negative and repressive behavior of one of his supervisors (who had chosen not to participate) was affecting his employees. The manager has now found the courage to confront the supervisor with some new requirements about his job performance. We will see what behavior actually changes–but the issue is now out in the open, instead of driving everybody crazy behind the scenes. –JoelleLyonsEverett? mailto:JLEShelton@aol.com

  • The take-up rate for implementing the priorities was 95%! At last count, the priorities are being realized in five cities and through one steering group on national policy.” –client comment to facilitator Kerry Napuk

  • “I found the Open Space experience to be extremely valuable as I get to sit with other practitioners to discuss the problems of the community rather than just hear preaching. There’s only one problem with Open Space … it has spoiled me. I’m going to be bored with any conference that doesn’t have an Open Space track now.” –participant comment to facilitator MichaelHerman? at professional conference track run in Open Space

  • “I really found the Open Space experience very helpful since it brings people, including the experts on the issues, together to share their experiences and address the issues. The next conference can be Open Space all by itself. I felt that I got much more out of the Open Sessions than the tutorials for which I paid so much!” –participant comment to Michael Herman at a professional conference track facilitated in Open Space.

  • The entire conference was a wonderful experience. I had real reservations when you started talking about Open Space, wondered how it would work, would the groups be intellectually challenging. Some were, some were not, but the liberating factor of being able to get up and move on more than made up for this. Some, where I thought I would bumblebee were interesting enough that I stayed put. Others finished early and I wondered around until something caught my eye. In others I, with the approval of the group, went over to check with another group to see if we were duplicating each other, we weren’t, and then came back and reported to the group. It is truly remarkable…This was my first experience with this. I liked the diversity of the people there. I found most of the people who convened groups were not experts on an issue, but were ones who wanted to know more about the issue. And somehow those with expertise and information found their way there. –client reporting back to Lisa Heft after Open Space conference.

  • “This was the best meeting I’ve participated in during my 30 years in this parish.” — An elder at St. Augustine Church in Pleasanton, California, during the closing circle (Jeff Aitken reporting)

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