Bringing Forum Home
Having been in EO for three years, I have learned a lot about the value of Forum. Upon being placed in one, Idecided to create a Family Forum (FF), with the goal of improving communication with my loved ones, many of whom are associated with my business. We wanted enhanced personal connections beyond our normal conversations around business strategy and profit margin, and the Forum concept helped us achieve that. The key to applying Forum to your home life revolves around the word “RAISE.”
R is for “RULES” –
Get your ground rules. It is the structure of Forum that makes it unique and effective, so when applying it at home, it’s important that your family members agree to certain guidelines. Who should be involved? Does Gestalt Language Protocol need to be strictly applied? What is the frequency of the meetings? Look to your EO Forum constitution for guidance.
A is for “ALL” –
Get commitment from all involved. Like in EO, your FF will not work if someone in the family does not believe in the system. How you sell your idea to your family makes a big difference. In my case, I shared what I learned from being Forum trained, and explained the value of structure by sharing inspirational stories. I also mentioned how Forum can be used as a safe tool to bring up any unpleasant conversations that might otherwise be difficult to mention at the dinner table.
I is for “not INSTANT” –
Forum is not an instant solution. Just like in fitness, you will see the benefits of FF overtime, not immediately, and some challenges are expected. In my case, what used to be a monthly FF soon became bi-monthlyfor many reasons. Before we knew it, our meetings were staggered, andwhen we held them, they returned to being like boring shareholder meetings. Instead of being irritated about the development and giving up, we chose to be aware of the issues and reiterated our ground rules and objectives.
S is for “SEPARATE” –
Keep your EO Forum and FF separate. This should already be clear to every Forumtrained member, but it’s important to mention it again. Trust and respect is one of EO’s core values, and keeping the confidentiality separate between your EO Forum and FF is crucial.
E is for “EFFECTIVE” –
Make every FF effective. In my FF, we chose someone from the family to serve as Moderator. Unlike in EO Forums, our presentation is not decided at the previous meeting. At least a week beforeeach FF, our Moderator gathers input from everyone regarding topics they would like to bring to the table, which are then included in the agenda and sent out at least three days before the meeting. Having a Moderator is crucial, as it helps everyone stay on track and discuss
Since I brought Forum home, it has made a huge difference in our family dynamics. It not only raises the bar of openness and closeness among family members, but it ensures we understand one another’s needs. All in all, instituting Forum in my personal life has been a wonderful experience, and one that continues to pay dividends.