The Families' Ideas Dinner

The Families’ Ideas Dinners


Too often, we have a tendency to favor those well-established ideas that are deeply interwoven with and influenced by our personal and professional lives.
In consequence we rarely think “out of the box” in a way that yields new ideas that can create a “Eureka” moment and compel us to question some of our beliefs, values and assumptions.
This is a shame because novel ideas are just those that may open the gate for new ways of looking at familiar things, thus leading to a new project, a new investment, or a new endeavor. Our Ideas’ dinners are an effective shortcut and catalyst to come up with such news ideas (we don’t have to read lengthy treaties, books, or articles –we just listen to what everybody around the table has to suggest).

Our Ideas’ Dinners are successful because we always walk away from them with a bunch of interesting, possibly disruptive, new ideas. And remember: we are only bound by our imaginations!


They are organized in various locations throughout the year and on each occasion gather 20 participants max (all BFF supporters). The choice of guests is essential: they must come from different backgrounds and have different perspectives to avoid the trap of group think and lame ideas. 

Diversity is therefore key!

Every participant comes prepared with an idea which she or he believes is original or interesting enough to be shared with fellow guests. When all ideas have been presented, a brief discussion follows between all guests (reactions, thoughts, comments) moderated by one of the BFF’s partners. To succeed, the dinner requires a bit of preparation on the part of everybody but it’s a great challenge to embrace. In the end, guests leave enriched by 19 new ideas! The day after the dinner, everybody receives a short summary of each idea. That’s it! Simple but efficient and enjoyable. BFF supporters get access to all curated ideas, including those emanating from dinners in other locations.


There is no limitation in terms of what sort of ideas should be submitted to the group. Of course, coming up with a new idea that nobody in the group knows about is virtually impossible -we all know, as Mark Twain once said, when discussing the combinatorial nature of creativity, that...

All good ideas are second-hand! 

Just bring with you, and present in three minutes, an idea (macro, micro, whatever!) that you think is original, believe will be of interest to the rest of the group, and which might open new perspectives. Please keep in mind that here to, the Chatham house rule applies.

Who can attend?

  • Monthly Barometer subscribers
  • Business Families Foundation supporters
  • FBN (Family Business Network) Canada members