Who knew that you can write a whole book about the art of gathering……whether it be meetings or events or limes or birthday parties and make it interesting? Somehow, the author, Mrs Priya Parker… found a way to make this book both entertaining, engaging and informative all in one. I really do not know how, but this book was GOOOOOOOD! 😉 Rating 5/5.
This book is perfect for anyone who hosts any type of gathering, whether it be conferences, or meetings or events or hikes or house parties or family dinners. Whatever the event, whatever the size or the occasion, there is something you can learn from Priya Parker’s Book. For me, some of the main takeaways from this book were:
- Define your purpose! This seems obvious right? But how often do we clearly define the purpose for our gatherings, no matter the scale? We need to define why we are gathering in the first place, what is the point of this meeting or this event that we are hosting. “Specificity is a crucial ingredient. The more focused a gathering is, the more narrowly it frames itself and the more passion it arouses.”
- Exclusivity! If your event is open to everyone, then why should I feel special that I was invited? “Inviting everyone is easy. Excluding people can be hard.” Once you have defined the purpose of your event, then you will be able to realize who should be present, and who more importantly, does not need to be present, who you can exclude. In addition, it is important to choose a venue that works for you, that encourages the interaction that you want to have for all the attendees invited.
- Don’t be a chill host, nor an overbearing one. When you are hosting an event, you are in charge and part of the success or failure of the gathering rests on your shoulders. You can’t be hosting a party and be perfectly content with just hiding in the kitchen and not interacting with the guests or letting that loud friend spend the entire evening boring everyone with stories about their life. You have to be wiling to take charge, and not just at the start of the event but througout the gathering. “…exercising your authority, once and early on in the evening is as effective as exercising your body once and early on in life.”
- Create a new environment, all be it a temporary one. It is important that people feel immersed in a world that you created. This is important for events like parties or weddings or even a work retreat. You as the host, or the person planning the party have the ability to make it into something unforgettable and to do this you need to take persons on a journey that they will remember, either with decor or with activities or rules (such as wear all white like in Dinner Le Blanc parties), or you are not allowed to use your first name or last name, you must be introduce yourself as your favorite 80s singer and also state your favorite song as way of introduction to persons. Something fun, something unique, something memorable.
- Logistics are necessary but do you need to start your event with this? This is a very important point. How many times have you been to an event, whether it be a conference or meeting or wedding and the first thing you hear when you sit down is “The bathrooms are to the back on the right and side.” Starting with these random announcements, just when persons are most attentive and excited could “kill the vibe” as we Trinis say. Of course, they need to be said, but maybe you need to open with some information regarding the actual event that we are attending and then towards the ending of the opening remarks you can give out this kind of information.
- You need to close the gathering. You started your event with a bang, the event itself has been successful and people are having a great time, but it is around 12 and you are tired and ready for the party to be over. Just as you started the event with an introduction, you need to close the event and not just have it die a slow natural death. For example, you may state that lets have a last drink and toast to our next lime or gather everyone together for some closing remarks about what was discussed here and thank them for coming.
This book is a great addition to your bookshelf. It is available on Amazon at a price of US $19.04. Have you heard of this book before? Be sure to get yourself a copy, trust me, you will enjoy it and you will surely learn something . I did ❤