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A Glorious Disaster

My recent Glorious Disaster I walked into a leadership team workout for a Fortune 100 company this week and was absolutely shocked with the mindset of the people in the room. I knew that these were very smart people in … Continue reading

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Workshop Leader Nightmare Part 2

Yesterday I wrote about a nightmarish workshop setup I walked into and had to improvise on the spot. You can read about it here if you missed it!   Making lemonade from lemons... I quickly popped in an Altoid, just … Continue reading
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Workshop Leader Nightmare

Anyone who leads workshops or provides training will relate to this recent nightmare of mine.  I literally had a dream about it last night and just had to share it... Last November I had the opportunity to provide our Mindset … Continue reading
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Preparing the Group

Preparing the group for a great experience takes some planning and preparation. They will be walking into the room with all kinds of baggage: Will we have to role-play? How many phone calls am I going to miss? Is this … Continue reading
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Front Loading

Front-loading an experience is making clear the purpose of an activity, session, workshop, retreat or meeting prior to actually doing it.   If participants clearly understand the purpose or lesson upfront, that topic will repeatedly show itself during the action component … Continue reading
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Ideas to Follow Up on Workshops

  Following up on your session is incredibly important to helping participants.  See Raising the Collective Bar about why.  Below are some ideas: Follow up with them with recent articles and personal notes to keep them motivated. Send them the … Continue reading
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Raising the Collective Bar

  Take a moment and think of a large spider web.A spider web is very similar to organizations.  If you are looking directly at it, you will see many different strands connected together in a concentric circle – see left. … Continue reading
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What if…. the debrief gets out of hand?

What you will see:  A gripe session Arguing or fighting Discussion moving off the topic Side bar discussions Likely Causes: Poor questioning from the facilitator Unresolved team issues How to Prevent it: Be careful of using activities when therapy is … Continue reading
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What if…. someone dominates the debrief?

  What you will See: One person answering most of the questions One person talking excessively. Most participants remaining silent. Likely Causes: The person wanted to show that he or she has the correct answers. Other participants are afraid to … Continue reading
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What if…. participants don’t join the debrief?

  What you will see: Lack of eye contact with you, especially after you ask a question. Minimal one-word responses to your questions Shoulders shrugging Silence Likely Causes: They did not understand your question You haven’t given them enough time … Continue reading
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What if…. someone gets overly competitive?

  What you will See: Taking the activity too seriously. Bending the rules or cheating. Extreme efforts to win or do better than others. Overly discussing the activity afterward with a focus on strategies and missed opportunities rather than on … Continue reading
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What if… someone does not want to participate?

  What you will see: Rolling eyes: Lack of eye contact with you, or used negative body language Negative comments about the activity or the experience Direct comments they do not want to participate Likely causes: Past experiences that were … Continue reading
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ABC’s Debrief

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Debriefing Methods

Since facilitation is about the process, not content, you had better understand the process.   The closure, or debrief, is the process by which we reflect on experiences and discover how they link to different aspects of our lives.  This is … Continue reading
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Four Rules to Keep in Mind as a Facilitator

Of all the elements in experiential learning, the facilitator has the greatest impact upon the ultimate success or failure of the program. You're Facilitative vs. Directive. Good facilitators know that they're not here to "fix" anyone. They understand that they … Continue reading
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Responsibilities, Challenges and Abuses of Facilitators

The facilitation techniques included in this membership site will help you in all three critical areas below: The Single Greatest Responsibility of a Great Facilitator: Creating a safe and comfortable space for self and group discovery.  Learn how to set … Continue reading
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Responsibilities, Challenges and Abuses of Facilitators

The facilitation techniques included in this membership site will help you in all three critical areas below: The Single Greatest Responsibility of a Great Facilitator: Creating a safe and comfortable space for self and group discovery.  Learn how to set … Continue reading
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Qualities of a Facilitator

There are literally hundreds of qualities that are useful, both as a facilitator and as a human being.  For example, being a good, active listener!  Just because something is not mentioned below does not mean we do not need to … Continue reading
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What is a facilitator?

Strictly speaking, a facilitator makes a process easier.  A facilitator does not add or subtract from the process, but helps bring about an outcome by providing guidance and assistance. “How” something happens is just as important, if not more important, than … Continue reading
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The Simplest Debriefing / Questioning Method

For a SUPER simple method, and perfect for beginners, check out the 'What' Method.  The questioning strategy could not be more simple: What? So What? Now What? What? Get full description and discussion around the experience. "What happened during the … Continue reading
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Why ask questions as a facilitator?

  This may seem like a no-brainer, but I want to take nothing for granted! There are two core skills that will help you become an effective facilitator, in ANY setting. First, be a good active listener and observer. Next become … Continue reading
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Probing

  What is probing? Probing is asking follow-up questions in order to gain more understanding, such as: Can you explain further? Could you put it in another way? Can you please tell me more about that? But why, how, who, … Continue reading
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Paraphrasing

  What is paraphrasing? Paraphrasing is repeating what somebody has said, using your own words. Why use paraphrasing? Benefits for the facilitator The technique forces you to listen very carefully, because when the person has finished speaking, you know that … Continue reading
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DIGA – Experiential Learning Cycle

There are several debrief methods to choose from and DIGA is one we used while training hundreds of facilitators to be more effective because of the simplicity of the questioning that could lead to marvelous discovery. DIGA was first introduced … Continue reading
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Facilitative Behaviors

The key to a good facilitation is to let the group discover the lesson that is appropriate.  As the facilitator, do not manipulate or guide the discussion with leading questions to get the group to discover what YOU feel is … Continue reading
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Maintenance Techniques to Get People Back on Track

  Facilitative behaviors used during a discussion to help people get back on track: Throw-Back: Team Member: “It is not possible get through this obstacle!” Facilitator: “If it was possible, what would need to happen?” Share Observations: Facilitator: “It is … Continue reading
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MSU

Almost every one of us has a graduate degree from/in MSU – Making Stuff Up! I typically poke fun at myself and say, "I am not sure how many of you know, but I have a Ph.D. in MSU!  Did … Continue reading
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Don’t ‘We’ on Yourself!

A fun way to keep the debrief light is to start getting people to notice how often we use the non-specific noun ‘We’, which we all do frequently when really we mean ‘I’. It is one particular way to spread … Continue reading
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Clarity Techniques

Facilitators use these techniques to reflect verbiage back to participants.  Do not judge their words, simply be a mirror for them to judge their own words.  Be careful not to 'throw' the responses in their face and always be polite, … Continue reading
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Join or Judge

This a powerful technique to check in with people and help them make better decisions. Join or Judge is similar to Help or Hinder, but is *just* different enough to merit providing this for you and this is better used … Continue reading
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