Facilitator Journal | Issue #0217, August 16, 2005 | 7,000 Subscribers....
As well as we might plan our group processes, meetings, and training
events, they seldom go exactly as planned. One of the marks of a
seasoned facilitator is their ability to glean valuable insights
and learning in the unexpected events that inevitably occur.
Finding the gift in things going "wrong" is a skill that
makes facilitation just that much richer for you and your groups.
This week's article, "The Process is Always the Same,"
explores the value in cultivating this skill, helping us to take
on the attitude that there really aren't any mistakes. This attitude
is the prerequisite for seizing opportunities when the unexpected
Improvisational Facilitator Teleclass Returns
Sue Walden and I will
be leading another session of the 5-day teleclass, "The Improvisational
Facilitator," the week of September 12th. I'm always thrilled
to be offering this class where we'll present powerful, practical
improv techniques you can use to immediately enhance your facilitation,
training, and group leadership skills. This class is very interactive
and uses many innovative experiential activities that will surely
surprise you. I'm really looking forward to stepping through this
process with you and hope to see many of you there. Register by
August 31st for a $10 discount. Please click
here for details.
Offer for the next 25 FacilitatorU.com Members!
There are still free copies of the book, "Miracle Meetings,
3 Simple Steps That Will End Dysfunctional behavior in Your Meetings,"
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The Process is Always the Same
as Learning Opportunities
Sometimes the objective of a given
session doesn't go as planned. Things can be going just fine when suddenly,
the unexpected happens and threatens your entire process. In my humble
experience as a facilitator, I've learned to look forward to things "going
wrong!" Why? Because, if they are handled well, they can present
some of the richest learning or barrier-removing opportunities available.
In fact, I've come to see these occurrences as gifts, offering my groups
the chance to explore in ways I could never have planned.
These events may come from either inside or outside of the group. But
no matter their source, they give you the chance to see how participants
behave in the midst of life happening. And because as human beings, we
tend to operate according to patterned responses, how we do anything is
how we do everything. Or put another way, "the process is always
the same." So these opportunities can be used to make participants
aware of behaviors that are either expediting or blocking the results
Let's say you're facilitating a work
group seeking to solve some of their staff problems. The group leader
explains that a recurring issue is that few of their members actually
show up at their staff meetings, and those that do show up aren't really
Very early in the meeting you notice some patterns with the group leader.
First, he talks most of the time and seems bent on having an answer for
everything. He doesn't check with the group about what they want to work
on and consistently changes the group's focus for no obvious reason. The
rest of the group clams up when he does this. It's apparent to you that
this is a common pattern probably contributing to the problem.
So you decide to use this as an opportunity to check out this pattern.
You first get Bob's permission to accept feedback on his behaviors. After
some inquiry amongst the group, you find that most of the group feels
put off and undervalued by Bob's behavior at meetings to the point they
don't often want to come or contribute.
After questioning Bob about his perspective, you find that he never knew
how the group really felt and took their silence as an invitation to just
talk through the meetings. Here's a chance for you to ask him, "Where
else in your life might you be operating on poor assumptions without checking
This kind of intervention can cause powerful shifts in participants by
getting them to unravel patterns real-time and to reflect on where else
this pattern is showing up in their lives. Your simple awareness
of disempowering patterns and their effect on your life is sometimes all
that's required to change it.
next time you're facilitating or participating in a group, be aware of your
own patterns of behavior in the group. After the meeting, clarify the pattern
for yourself in writing and ask yourself where else in your life this pattern
shows up. Make a decision to either change it or do more of it (depending
on what it is). Get help from those you trust to make this shift in your
behavior. Iím interested in hearing about your experience. Please
email us with your stories.
You Do Anything Is How You Do Everything : A Workbook, by Cheri
As a working counselor, I am constantly searching for therapeutic tools
and this workbook is currently my favorite resource. Even though Huber explains
the causes of suffering from the Buddhist perspective, you don't have to
be Buddhist to appreciate the theory behind the exercises. In using the
exercises, a person may cut and paste, draw, paint, color, or write their
responses. By encouraging such creativity in responding, a person can express
themselves in a wide variety of media, rather than just the normal verbal
medium which dominates counseling. In the book, Huber truly covers many
issues including relationships, self-esteem, holidays, emotional health,
death and grief, and so much more. I recommend that every therapist in practice
would benefit from using this book not only in their work with others, but
also in working on their own issues. I return to it time and time again
in order to feel centered and focused as a person and professional.
38-page collection contains 25 checklists on practically
every aspect of group facilitation and training
including meeting preparation, communication, participation,
intervention, teamwork, workshop preparation, and
Rights. Owners of this guide
are granted a license to copy and distribute this material in
their own trainings, workshops, and groups. Basically, you can
do anything you want with this guide except sell it yourself.
2. Burn Out Self-Test
3. Consensus Building Checklist
4. Conflict Resolution Checklist
5. Creativity Competency Checklist
6. Facilitation Contracting Questionnaire
7. Facilitator's Full Participation Inventory
8. Facilitating Organizational Change
9. Facilitating Team Development Initiatives
10. Flip Charting Tips
11. “Hold It” Intervention Technique
12. Instructional Design Checklist
13. Intervention Checklist
14. Master Facilitator Competency Self-Assessment
15. Master Meeting Checklist
16. Meeting Manager Checklist
17. Participant’s Full Participation Inventory
18. Participant Meeting Preparation Checklist
19. Planning Checklist
20. Planning And Implementation Checklist
21. Presentation Preparation
23. Teleconference Facilitation Checklist
24. Top Ten Things To Do As A Facilitator
25. Workshop Preparation Check List
Cost of this Guide: $29.95
Click here to order and download now
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contact us with a request to refund/credit your credit card
in the full amount and we will do so immediately. It's our policy
to do this and we honor this in every single case.
Become a member of FacilitatorU.com and receive this guide and
a host of other benefits at an incredibly discounted price.
An exceptional value. Click
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The next 10 new members will also receive Dike Drummond's new
ebook on running effective meetings, "Miracle Meetings,
3 Simple Steps That Will End Dysfunctional behavior in Your
Meetings." You can have a look at this ebook here.
here to join FacilitatorU.com now and receive this book
as part of the many membership features.
here to submit them. Thanks for your interest!