Powered by Circles

We often talk about our results, namely, how we produce small group experiences with a strong feeling of connection, breakthrough, and high engagement via our platform and method – The Circl.es System.   At this point in our evolution as an organization,  we are pleased to be empowering organizations, communities and schools to leverage what we’ve built to realize impact and engagement by scaling up Circles to connect individuals in meaningful ways. 

For the past few years, we have been delivering small group experiences, combined with service, which we’ve called “managed service” and someday soon, we will offer Circl.es as a software as a service (SaaS) platform for purchase.

Recently, we created “Powered by Circles”, a model with only a bit of hand-holding and a lower price-point. This is a step on our way to creating a more pure SaaS offering, and it has confirmed that clients can benefit from the Circl.es system and platform on their own.

Here are some recent stories:

Jodie McLean, the CEO of EDENS, a progressive, community-oriented real estate development organization, learned about Circl.es at a global digital seminar managed by the Circl.es team. There, she experienced the power of the small group, inclusive circle, and contacted Circl.es for her organization’s one-day Values-based Leadership Summit.  

EDENS’s culture is one based on close relationships, authenticity and inclusion, so it was critical to create an experience – not just a meeting. The vision was for the entire organization to connect in a psychologically safe space to show up for, and care for, each other.

The Circl.es team provided design consultation and administrative training to the EDENS project team. In just a few hours, a group of EDENS employees were equipped to moderate two sessions for 20 circles, engaging 200 employees in all. The Circles experience was rated 8.7/10 and 9.7 for facilitation. EDENS will continue to use the platform for recurring Circles and another organization-wide gathering. They are now empowered to design, facilitate and manage this experience independently. 

Pablo Cerdera, the Director of Restorative Practice at Wharton, experimented with the Circles platform for several months before considering how he might leverage it within his institution. When in-person instruction was cancelled and 600+ new students had to be introduced to one another virtually, he turned to Circl.es. 

While Pablo had a process in mind, Circles Design Lead, Jonathan Hefter, helped him hone it for a virtual experience that would scale. Together, they trained approximately 50 students on the New Student Orientation Team to become Circles facilitators, in one session. The Circles Ops Team helped set up smooth onboarding and supported the event behind the scenes, proactively heading off issues and fielding only 3 support calls for 600 people. The New Student Orientation Team went on to welcome new Wharton students to their Fall 2020 class in simultaneous Circle sessions, and participants rated the experience 8.69/10, with a 9.72 facilitator score. 

Andy Bailey and his business coaching firm, Petra Coach, has a tradition of running EO-style forums. Andy had a vision of engaging the executives of Petra Coach’s client organizations in forum groups on Circl.es. With 200 companies in their community, they saw a chance to organize forums by executive roles, beyond CEOs. Petra’s coaches are skilled facilitators with their own forum process, but were challenged to imagine a path to scaling up to hundreds of forums. Circl.es gave them a smooth operational process and a way to guarantee consistency and quality of experience. With just a few hours of setup and training, they launched a scalable forum group experience for their clients.

Powered by Circles is a path for an organization looking to acquire the expertise necessary to design, facilitate and manage your own virtual Circles experiences.

Our services focus on three processes that are essential to success:

Design. Powered by Circles starts with a client’s vision for how to run a session. The Circl.es System and design team helps effectively translate that to virtual delivery at scale. They point out how to leverage the best features of the platform. And in the process, transfer some experience and wisdom so clients design future programs on their own. The Circl.es Design Lead shares sample agendas, makes design recommendations based on best practices and passes along valuable expertise to empower the client to design future experiences independently.

Facilitation. The Circl.es Video Space features provide ‘training wheels’ for facilitation.  To scale, very often organizations and communities rely on staff or member facilitators, many of whom are leading in this way for the first time. Powered by Circles includes a Digital Facilitation Handbook, communication templates, delivery of a sample session and a Train-the-Trainer program. While many clients have experienced facilitators or their own process, the Circles System and team helps quickly translate this for virtual, and at scale.

Management.  For several years, the Circl.es Operations Team has been setting up, managing and measuring large implementations of Circles. It takes some work to scale intimacy. Powered by Circles can efficiently train you to use features we’ve built into the platform, and to avoid the many mistakes we’ve made. Still, we’ve noticed that some clients prefer us to handle the logistics and administration of programs so they can focus on design and facilitation, or perhaps their long list of other jobs. Either way is fine; the Circl.es team can continue to provide outsourced support, or transfer this capability to a client team leveraging our platform. 

Ready to try Circl.es in your own organization?

Powered by Circles allows us to get this high quality experience out into the world at a much lower price point. The cost varies according to the number of users/month and services provided – all aimed at empowering organizations to successfully scale human connection, virtually.

The Circl.es Team is excited to take this step toward helping more of the world connect in a meaningful way. If you are interested, we’d love to share our scoping and pricing model in more detail. You can get in touch here.

In a world of physical distance, circles facilitate authentic human connection.

In a circle, 3-12 participants contribute equally, share openly, and push each other to act.

We spent years with academics and practitioners, honing best practices and building a technology platform. Our circles have helped scale peer learning, sustain manager and leadership development, move live training online, onboard new employees, support career development, teach collaboration, and build community.

We’ve been grateful for the support and the referrals from our large corporate partners, schools, and communities who have been hiring us to help design, facilitate and manage Circles programs.

In order to keep up with the interest in our system and technology, please help us understand your needs by answering a few questions.

Make human connections.

Get in touch to find out how you can get started.