Credits: Photgraphy by Amoghavira
Time to think, tailored to each customer:
helps people think outside the box
.... but doesn't come out of one
We use six key pieces of underlying theory on this:
Facilitation v Presentation v Training?
Presentation: focus on presenter & issue (informs, describes, instructs, explains, convinces, amuses)
Training: focus on learning (trainer guides a group learning or reviewing skills/knowledge/attitudes)
Facilitation: focus on the group (achieve goals, by helping the processes which groups use to decide).
One view of the process is: 1 Preparation 2 Contacting with the group 3 Problem analysis
4 Gathering views 5 Reaching consensus 6 Review.
Some problems which any groups may have with reaching good decisions:
They go straight to Stage 5, and miss out Stages 1 - 4 & 6
Ideal group size is 5-8, for communication; more = splits, fewer = unbalance
Power & status can be used adversely; inter-group rivalry can become a focus
Values, culture and standards diverge and create friction; people can be playing roles
Agendas can be hidden, not open.
So what can a facilitator do?
create clarity & empathy
deploy active listening
employ skilful questioning
observe the group closely
use intervention skills carefully and wisely ......
For a summary of the craft of facilitation by a master, you may like to have a look at Carl Rogers' piece (PDF).
Examples of work delivered are here.