While our think ponds may have regular meeting places, such as a coffee shop, a library, or members’ homes, occasional field trips can be inspiring and informative.
Here are five different forms a think pond field trip can take:
Intentional: Go to a place that reflects ideas (creative, like an art exhibit or museum; innovative like a maker space; a public space that is well-used and different; a natural space). Go with a specific question or project in mind. Each person might have a different project in mind or they might be working on a single project from their own diverse perspectives.
Serendipitous: Go somewhere to just gather ideas without any particular goal or motive. Collect impressions and free associate. Then have a conversation.
Observational: Go to a location related to the people you are seeking to serve or persuade and study what happens, take notes as a prelude to project definition.
Social: Each person chooses a place they view as a source of ideas or a good place to think. We all try to see it through their eyes and use it as a creative springboard for our own projects.
Interview: Each person goes somewhere and interviews individuals or groups with needs or expertise related to the project.