It is the sign of an utterly modern conference that a Twitter hashtag, in this case #wcagls will be advertised to delegates. In fact at the Willow Creek Association Global Leadership Summit in Bristol, from which I have just returned, it was on every page of the delegate material.
Now I love this bold move which invites us to engage with each other and the material being taught. The disappointment, for me, is that by and large all delegates around the world did was lift quotes from speakers and tweet them. Taking stuff out of context, some said 'that the thoughts may be shared wider,' is all well and good, but where was the critical engagement?
When a speaker based his whole message around a possible, or at least dubious, translation of 2 Kings 3:16. When an interviewee told us he learned most of what he learned about leadership aged 14-18. When being slightly over-challenged was promoted as the key to creativity. No-one batted an eyelid.
I think Willow like critical friends. I fear they have produced puppys.
Don't get me wrong. There were many fine take-aways from the conference and I scored several of the speakers 5/5 on my feedback form. Seth Godin, Henry Cloud, Cory Booker, John Dickson and Patrick Lencioni were all amazing. Do Willow know many women? The hosting by e@b (Bristol Elim) was great and the pre-conference admin good.
I'd just like to see a slightly edgier discussion. All those leaders and barely a tweetfight. Sad.