If there was a silver bullet for making facilitators more effective, it would be to get their meeting participants better prepared and contributory. To that extent, we offer you the following to submit to your meeting participants. This credo, or a statement of the beliefs or aims that ought guide participants’ actions, has been modified from “The Ethics of the Management Profession” Harvard Business Review 2008 and reprinted by some as the Hippocratic Oath for Meetings by numerous business organizations, domestically and around the world.
As a participant I serve as society’s fiduciary for_______, an organization that brings people and resources together to create valued products and services. My purpose is to serve the public’s interest by enhancing the value my organization creates for society. Sustainable valueis created when the organization produces economic, social, and environmental output that is measurably greater than the opportunity cost of all it consumes. In fulfilling my role . . .
- I recognize that any enterprise is at the nexus of many different constituencies, whose interests can sometimes diverge. While balancing and reconciling various interests, I seek a course that enhances the value my organization can create for society over the long term. This may not always mean growing or preserving the organization and may include such painful actions as its restructuring, discontinuation, or sales, if these actions preserve or increase value.
- I pledge that considerations of personal benefit will never supersede the interests of the organization I am supporting. The pursuit of self-interest is the vital engine of a capitalist economy, but unbridled greed can be just as harmful. Therefore, I will guard against decisions and behavior that advances my own narrow ambitions but harm the organization I represent and the societies it serves.
- I promise to understand and uphold, both in letter and in spirit, the laws and contracts governing my own conduct, that of my organization, and that of the societies in which it operates. My personal behavior will be an example of integrity, consistent with the values I publicly espouse. I will be equally vigilant in ensuring the integrity of others around me and bring to attention the actions of others that represent violations of this shared professional code.
- I vow to represent my organization’s performance accurately and transparently to relevant parties, ensuring that investors, consumers, and the public at large can make well-informed decisions. I aim to help people understand how decisions that affect them are made, so that choices do not appear arbitrary or biased.
- I will not permit considerations of race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, nationality, party politics, or social status to influence my choices. I will endeavor to protect the interests of those who may not have power, but whose well-being is dependent on my decisions.
- I will participate diligently, mindfully, and conscientiously applying judgment based on the best knowledge available. I will consult colleagues and others who can help inform my judgment and will continually invest in staying abreast of the evolving knowledge in the field, always remaining open to innovation. I will do my utmost to develop myself and the next generation of participants so that our organization continues to grow and contribute to the well-being of society.
- I recognize that my stature and privileges as a professional stem from the honor and trust that the profession as a whole enjoys, and I accept my responsibility for embodying, protecting, and developing the standards of our profession, so as to enhance that respect and honor.
The FAST curriculum on Professional Facilitation Skills details the responsibilities and dynamics mentioned above. Remember friends, nobody is smarter than everybody, so consult your FAST Facilitator Reference Manual or attend a FAST professional facilitative leadership training workshop offered around the world (see MG Rush for a current schedule — an excellent way to earn 40 PDUs from PMI, CDUs from IIBA, or CEUs).
- Meeting Participation Tips (Part 2 of 3 – The Middle) (mgrush.com/blog)
- Meeting Participation Tips (Part 3 of 3 – The Wrap) (mgrush.com/blog)
- From Chomsky, Shiva, Pilger and more: An Open Message to All Who Seek A New and Better World (dandelionsalad.wordpress.com)