Imagine sitting down to a dinner with 5 genuinely cool and interesting people like yourself. You’ll share a meal, share a drink, share your story and have others share theirs. It’s really all about sharing a connection with other people and bridging the gap from strangers to friends.
You won’t be sold anything, indoctrinated or have any of your organs harvested. This isn’t a dating agency, a Pokemon Go meetup or a networking event – It’s a way to meet the types of people you wish you knew but always complain about not being able to find.
It’s a no-strings-attached coming together of people you’ll probably really like – I call it “Six Friends” Dinners and it could be what you and your city has been missing.
HERE’S HOW IT WORKS
A Six Friends Dinner brings together 6 people who, mostly, don’t know each other.
The organiser of the Dinner (the “Host”) phones up to invite one person he/she thinks is genuinely interesting and likes spending time with. This person then becomes the Co-host.
So we now have a Host and Co-host. That makes 2 cool and interesting people, grabbing dinner and discussing cool sh*t!
The Host and Co-host then each invite 1 other person that they find interesting and like to spend time with. That makes 4!
And now, to really make this a party, both the new invitees are expected to invite someone they think are interesting too and forward them the invitation as well.
This takes the dinner up to 6 pre-vetted and well-suited people for the evening.
It’s a win-win arrangement where you tap into the social circles of others while they tap into yours. To illustrate the benefits:
The Host and Co-host know 2 people each at the dinner and get to meet 3 NEW people.
The First round of Invitees also know 2 people at the dinner and get to meet 3 NEW people.
The Second round of invitees only know 1 other person at dinner and gets to meet 4 NEW people.
HERE’S HOW THE DINNER GOES
Once dinner starts, there will be a quick ice-breaker before everyone goes around and says a quick intro:
- Who they are
- Where they’re from
- What they’re working on
- Something they’re excited about – it could be a new book, app, business, website, restaurant or bar in the city. Anything really!
Next, you go back around the circle and each person talks about one thing they’re struggling with or finding challenging in their life.
It could be work, personal, relationships, mental. Whatever they wish really, anything goes so long as they are comfortable talking about it.
Everyone else from the group joins in to give ideas, insights or related experiences to help workshop the problem for around 10 minutes.
As a co-host (and inspiration for this idea) once so eloquently put it:
“The benefit to this is that you immediately jump into a deeper relationship with everyone else at the dinner. By encouraging each other to open up about a challenge and be vulnerable, you prevent creating just a surface level meeting that might happen at a networking event or meetup.
By treating everyone at the dinner as a good friend and trusted advisor, you immediately build a closer friendship than you might otherwise do in 2, 3, 5, or more encounters.”
It’s a pretty powerful and lasting shortcut to the age old problem of meeting new people and making new friends.
After everyone has had a turn, dinner should be over and it will be time to wrap up. It can do so organically based on the events of the night or even with a drink, book recommendations or Facebook friend requests!
SOME IMPORTANT CONSIDERATIONS
- The location must be central, inexpensive, not too overcrowded or noisy.
- The Dinner will take around 2-3 hours. Sounds like a long time but you’ll probably want it to go on all night!
- No inviting dates/significant others as this might throw the dynamic of 6 bright-eyed strangers meeting for dinner.
- We’re not rule-Nazis but it’s best to keep one communal conversation going instead of many splintered chats throughout.
- Seat people strategically. No one who knows each other should sit next to or across from each other. That way you won’t be tempted to splinter off into individual chats.
- The host should set the tone for how open everyone can be. If you and your co-host open up and be vulnerable, others will feel safe to do so too.
- Don’t be afraid to improvise!
- Take pictures and exchange info at the end! Post to Facebook and tag everyone so those who want to add fellow dinner guests can do so.
I’ll be hosting a bunch of 6 Friends Dinners throughout 2016 and encourage you to do so too!