Intro Circle

At the first meal that the group is together, each person says something about themselves (usually name, place of origin, their role in the project, how they heard about it or why they came to the program) and one additional question that the most recent arrival comes up with.

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What is Intro Circle

At someone's first dinner at the Art Monastery, we do Intro Circle. Everyone says their name, place of origin, artform, and role in the project. (You can adjust these to be appropriate for your activity.) The newcomer chooses another question to add on to that, one question that everyone answers. Examples:
"Do you believe in free will?"
"What was a time a work of art touched you so deeply you cried?"
"How did you come to be here?"
"What really makes your energy go up?"

I think it's nice to tell the newcomer that this is happening first. Tell them the whole thing and that they need to come up with a question. Give them some examples. Then get the group's attention and introduce the whole thing. This gives the newcomer a moment to think of a question.

Whomever feels called, goes first. When that person is finished, they point at the next person to go. Continue until everyone has introduced themselves."

When can an Intro Circle also be used

This can be very powerful also if you have someone who joins in the middle of the program, but we also do it on the first night of a program when everyone is new. In that case, the facilitator can come up with a question, preferably something that will reveal something about each person that they wouldn't be likely to share on the first night. The most successful Intro Circles were ones that led into long conversations through the entire meal and on into the night.

At the Art Monastery, we have periods of time where Artmonks are arriving and departing all the time. We developed this method to mark the occasion of someone's arrival and get to know everyone a little bit.

  • Appreciative / Community building
  • Ceremony / Ritual
  • Closer
  • Group communication
  • Opener
Innovation Phases
  • 2 Creating an Innovation-Friendly Culture
Train the Trainer seminars including Intro Circle can be found here: