Conversation Café Agreements
Open-mindedness: Listen to and respect all points of view.
Acceptance: Suspend judgment as best you can.
Curiosity: Seek to understand rather than persuade.
Discovery: Question assumptions, look for new insights.
Sincerity: Speak from your heart and personal experience.
Brevity: Go for honesty and depth but don’t go on and on.
Conversation Café Process
Assemble up to 8 people plus host, hearty topic, a talking object, and time (60-90 min.). Host explains process and agreements.
Round 1: Pass around the talking object; each person speaks briefly to the topic, no feedback or response.
Round 2: Again with talking object, each person deepens their own comments or speaks to what has meaning now.
Dialogue: Open, spirited conversation. Use talking object if there is domination, contention, or lack of focus.
Final Round: With talking object, each person says briefly what challenged, touched or inspired them.
Questions to Go Deeper
- What happened that led you to this point of view?
- How does this affect you personally?
- I’m curious, can you say more about that…
- Here’s what I heard…is that what you mean?
Choosing to host a conversation provides a powerful way to make a difference in our world, to build community, and to enhance collective intelligence. Plus it offers you a stimulating opportunity for learning and growth.
Did You Know?
The Process & Agreements are available in a variety of ready-to-print free formats. Click here to see them.
This document is also available in various formats in other languages. Click here to see them.