Commit c04d0ffa authored by Malvika Sharan's avatar Malvika Sharan

Update 2019-08-28-watercololer-effect.md

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---
date: 2019-08-28
description:
featured_image: "https://images.unsplash.com/photo-1563461661026-49631dd5d68e?ixlib=rb-1.2.1&ixid=eyJhcHBfaWQiOjEyMDd9&auto=format&fit=crop&w=1650&q=80"
featured_image: "https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DFVqupbXoAI9eCV?format=jpg&name=medium"
tags: ["Malvika Sharan", "Bio-IT", "Community", "Tips"]
title: "5 tips to promote ‘water cooler effects’ at informal discussion sessions"
omit_header_text: true
......@@ -49,8 +49,12 @@ Short sessions are great for brainstorming and generating new ideas. To ensure t
Even though these events are short, it’s always useful to use a few minutes towards the end of the sessions to bring the entire group together to invite final thoughts and possible directions for the discussed topic and ideas. You can set a few channels of communication that the attendees can use in order to connect with each other and continue the discussion afterward. Since we want to be mindful of the contributions made by our participants, it’s important to let them know where and how the outcome of their discussions will be used, how they can reuse the material, and where they can access them in the future. After the conference, a summary of the session in a collaborative document and further details can be shared with a “Thank You” email.
![](https://images.unsplash.com/photo-1563461661026-49631dd5d68e?ixlib=rb-1.2.1&ixid=eyJhcHBfaWQiOjEyMDd9&auto=format&fit=crop&w=1650&q=80)
*Image [on Unsplash by @productschool](https://unsplash.com/photos/5H0p6JPUHbI)*
To conclude, informal discussion sessions are useful for collecting ideas, gaining perspectives, and engaging with others over informal conversations on topics of mutual interests. With a little pre-planning, these meetings can turn an idea discussed over coffee or by the water coolers into useful community-driven projects. I hope you find these tips useful and take advantage of this format at the next BOSC or in your community events.
Do let me know on twitter ([@malvikasharan](https://twitter.com/MalvikaSharan)) which of your favourite tips are missing in the post.
*Cover photo [on Unsplash by @productschool](https://unsplash.com/photos/5H0p6JPUHbI)*
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*Cover photo from a BoF I facilitated during BOSC 2017 on ‘Promoting Diversity at Bioinformatics Conferences’*
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