A list of questions weavers can use in their conversations with network participants.
Network weavers aim to connect with as many participants as possible, as frequently as is needed. The purpose of these interactions is to learn more about each participant, including what they care about, what they’re working on, how they’d like to communicate, the value they are receiving from their participation, and how they’d like to contribute to the network. These conversations build trust, while surfacing opportunities to connect participants together to advance shared learning or action. They also help network leaders and participants alike to develop a more holistic awareness of what’s happening across the network, and to highlight matters that require special attention.
What to Listen For
In your conversations with participants, listen especially for opportunities to:
- Find common ground between participants,
- Expand existing participants’ engagement in the network and engage new participants in the work,
- Deepen trusting relationships and repair harm when necessary,
- Coordinate individual activities and amplify synergy,
- Support and advance collaborative projects,
- Frame important conversations, and
- Refine network convenings and activities to best serve the network’s purpose.
Basic Weaving Questions:
Ideally your conversations will touch on the personal, organizational, and network context of the network participant you’re speaking to. It’s important to ensure confidentiality - while you’ll take the lessons from the conversation, leave the details in order to keep the participant’s identity private. Questions may include:
- How’s life? Work, family, community?
- What’s on your mind?
- What are you working on?
- What are your current priorities?
- What’s challenging?
- Can the network or particular members help?
- What’s happening in the network?
- Are you currently working on any network projects or teams?
- How is that progressing?
- Anything else that I should be paying attention to?
Additional questions to consider:
Depending on the situation, these questions may be relevant as well:
Questions to understand their organizational work
- What are you working on in your organization or individually?
- What are your organization’s top priorities at the moment?
- How could the network help you advance your organizational or individual work?
- Are you able to make time for your participation in the network?
- Is your participation in the network integrated into your organizational priorities?
- What’s something really exciting in your work right now?
- What’s a specific challenge you’re dealing with?
Questions to understand their experience in the network
- What are your motivations for participating in this network?
- What are you appreciating about the network?
- What about your experience in the network could be better?
- What have you learned from your participation in this network?
- Is the network’s communication system working for you?
- Do you feel included in the decisions that the network is making and clear about the rationale for decisions?
Questions to assess the network’s evolution
- Who else should be involved to advance the network’s purpose?
- How could the network be more inclusive and equitable?
- Do you feel comfortable and heard when you raise a different perspective in the network? If not, how could that be better?
- Do you feel network participants are developing relationships built on trust? If not, how could that be better?
- What’s an important conversation you think the network needs to have?
- What else does the coordination team need to be aware of?
Questions to understand their work with the network
- Who are you collaborating with and how is that going?
- What opportunities do you see for greater collaboration in the network?
- Who would you like to collaborate with but haven’t gotten the chance to?
- What do you need from the network and/or the coordination team to advance your active network projects?
Questions to surface their hopes for the future
- How would you like to stay engaged with the network in the coming months?
- Is there anyone you’ve been meaning to have a conversation with but haven’t?
- Is there something you wish the network could do that hasn’t happened yet?
- What do you need to show up most effectively in the network?
- What else is on your mind?