Leadership Random Thoughts

Turning everyday get togethers into transformative gatherings

Discovering Priya Parker (through Tina Eisenberg’s fantastic website) was the best thing that happened to me last week! Her thoughts on community dynamics and social gatherings are the need of the hour.

My solution? I decided to borrow an idea from a group of women I used to meet with in graduate school. In our meetings, we came together by opening up about our “crucible moments” — the moments that changed us and made us who we are. Everyone has one, and it’s always a great story.

So at our family dinner, we asked everyone to share a story, a moment or an experience from their life that changed how they viewed the world. Then we added a clincher: It had to be a story that no one else at the gathering knew. This was a rather wild requirement for a group of closely knit family members. But I thought it might give us a shot at helping people who thought they knew everything about one another to realize: they didn’t.

Ideas @

Watch this conversation from for deeper insights on how we can transform our get togethers (Zoom or otherwise/un-Zoom/in-person) into gatherings to remember and cherish for a long time. It’s 50 minutes long but worth every minute of it. You’ll need this to survive this pandemic and beyond, now that we know this is a long-term crises.

Priya Parker — How to Create Meaningful Connections While Apart

If you’re still here and liked the conversation above, you’ll definitely love her TED talk from 2018. It’s shorter.

Priya Parker at TED

Do check out her book on this topic (it’s next up in my reading list!) or subscribe to her wonderful podcast, Together Apart, wherever you listen to podcasts. (My advice: do both!)

Before I go, I wanted to ask you — how are you planning your next gathering?