“Did our first WOL circle go as well today as I thought it did?” I asked my colleague.
“Very much so!” was her immediate response.
After weeks and weeks of research, approvals, planning and promotion, we finally launched our first Working Out Loud (WOL) circle today. Though I was a bit nervous, and feeling a bit unprepared, we all got online at the scheduled time and began the conversation.
First thing I wanted to do was to make sure everyone understood a few things:
1. I am not a Working Out Loud expert. This is part experiment, part adventure, and we are all in this together.
2. I am assuming the role of circle coordinator, but am happy to cede that role to anyone else in the group. Sadly, but understandably, no one took me up on my offer.
3. Consider our Working Out Loud circle Las Vegas. What we discuss in WOL stays in WOL. We must trust each other, respect each other, and not be concerned we will be gossiped about or judged. Based on what happened next, I have no concern that we are all on the same page.
Our WOL circle is comprised of colleagues all from the same organization, but all six of us work in different geographical locations, so we met on Zoom. Though we all knew one another, we didn’t know each other well.
During Week 1 of WOL, we introduce ourselves by telling how we got to the current stage of our career in 5 steps, and what our WOL out goal is. Through those exercises, those two simple exercises, we learned so much about each other. We shared secrets, we were vulnerable and open with one another, and together we became committed to this process.
Although we got a little lost in conversation along the way and did not get through everything we hoped to, it was really a terrific start. We all enjoyed our time together, we are eager to support one another, and we all are eagerly looking forward to next week when we dive deeper into our relationship lists and start to make our first contributions.