Marketers often limit themselves to
opinions solely from within the
marketing department, losing touch
with the valuable insight that
colleagues from other departments
Have you ever asked a colleague
from another department what type
of ebook content they feel would be
valuable to produce? You may be
surprised how insightful their
Open space meetings bring
together team members from
various areas of the business
including sales, customer service or
research & development for open,
How to Facilitate an Open Space
Meeting to Create eBook Content
Invite a cross-functional selection of
colleagues to a meeting.
Open Space is useful for groups of
any size from 10-1,000 people, but
meetings tend to have a point of
critical mass. 15-20 people tends to
be a good number to start with.
Provide your invitees with a copy of
your buyer personas and marketing
triggers prior to the meeting. This
will help them prepare ideas and
formulate opinions before being
inﬂuenced by other people’s views.
Based on the objective of the
discussion, the number of people
attending and the length of the
meeting, split the session into a
series of equal blocks.
With a group of people assembled,
form a circle and provide the group
with a general overview of the
process and subjects that you would
like to address during the session.
In our case we are looking for ideas
of content that our colleagues think
our customers and prospects would
As the facilitator, invite people with
ideas for ebooks to write their
concepts down on a piece of paper
and announce it to the group.
With a grid of time + space drawn
out, have each of the people who
contributed an idea post their piece
of paper in one of the time slots
until all are full.
Have the group quickly scan the
ideas posted on the wall, taking
note of the concepts they would like
to discuss further.
During each session there should
be a designated recorder that
captures the important points and
posts these ideas on the wall. The
recorder shares the notes later.
The Four Roles of Open Space
• The Host
The person who suggests a session
as the agenda is being established.
Participants are the people who join
the Host in discussion.
Bumblebees are people who move
from one discussion to another,
serving to cross-pollinate and tie the
Butterﬂies are people who choose
not to participate in any sessions,
but instead use the allotted time to
Open Space has been used to
facilitate meetings for every type of
organization from Fortune 100
companies and third world villages
to religious communities and
So, why does Open Space
methodology work so well?
Because of the focus on
collaboration, action and the
lack of hierarchy.
There are four principles & one law
of Open Space meetings
The people who show up are the
right people. This reminds people
that getting something done is not a
matter of having more resources or
Whenever it starts is the right time.
You know how you always seem to
get your best ideas in the shower?
Genuine creativity has no regard for
Whatever happens is the only thing
that could have. This sets an
expectation that the group will
come to a conclusion and that will
be that. This limits excuses about
what ‘could have been’.
When it’s over, it’s over. When the
session ends, that’s that. Don’t
waste time. Do what needs to be
done and move on.
The one law of Open Space –
the law of two feet
The only so-called rule of Open
Space simply states that if at any
time you ﬁnd yourself in a situation
where you are neither learning nor
contributing – use your two feet
and move onto another