The Art of Gathering

The Art of Gathering

How We Meet and Why It Matters

Riverhead, 2018 more...

Editorial Rating




In this extensive, practical guidebook, facilitator Priya Parker details the pivotal aspects of planning, designing, executing and closing meetings of all sorts. Whether planning a meeting at the World Economic Forum in Davos, a problem-solving session with entrepreneurs or a dinner party with friends, you can use Parker’s purposeful advice about how to spark your gathering. She emphasizes handling the people-oriented aspects of getting together with skill and “generous authority.” Parker also tackles unproductive work meetings. Her manual of fundamentals will help facilitators, party planners, meeting hosts and anyone who wants to organize purpose-driven, memorable collective experiences.

Why Are You Gathering?

Whether you are gathering to be cheerful – for a wedding, to be mournful – for a funeral – or to be productive and decisive – for a business meeting, gatherings structure today’s social and business life.

Identifying the purpose of a gathering makes it meaningful. Experienced meeting facilitator Priya Parker insists that a category – like “a wedding” or “a meeting” – is not a purpose. For example, a networking event might have the purpose of connecting people to solve shared problems. Or, she notes, that same networking event could be intended to improve working relationships in the community. Both purposes are specific, and each one requires the event organizer to structure the gathering differently.

About the Author

Priya Parker, the founder of Thrive Labs, is a meeting facilitator who helps executives, activists and educators create transformative gatherings. 

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