Lunch and Learn: FAST Structured Facilitation Gems or Takeaways

Prepared as a Lunch and Learn guide, you will find twelve FAST Structured Facilitation gems worth remembering. They are listed in alphabetical order, rather than order of importance. From the perspectives of curriculum developers, instructors, and students, here are the most significant learnings offered by the FAST curriculum and structured facilitation technique. ONE:   7:59am preparation and…

Backup Meeting Output

Tips on How to Backup Meeting Output from Whiteboards/ Easels

Using your telephone or a separate camera to record and backup meeting output will help you avoid losing valuable information.  You will capture various benefits with very little time or resource required. A backup provides a strong sense of security from loss of information gathered during your meetings and workshops. Backup Meeting Output from a Whiteboard or…

Meeting Inclusiveness

How to Recognize Diversity, Ensuring Meeting Inclusiveness

The primary responsibility of a facilitator is to protect the participants. Furthermore, the facilitator helps drive the group toward its desired deliverable. Since the deliverable is built to serve the participants, people should take priority over the issues.  To some extent, both people and issues are managed by creating an environment that is conducive to…

Use Fist of Five for Contextual Questions

Use the Fist of Five to Test for Consensus on Contextual Issues

The Fist of Five approach combines the speed of thumbs up/ down and displays the degrees of agreement that can support more complicated decision spectrums. Using this tool, people vote using their hands and display fingers to represent their degree of support. Fist of Five Method When a group comes to consensus on an issue, it means that everyone in the group can…

Meeting Problems Generate Resistance

Five Meeting Problems and What You Should Do About Them

Ever develop that sense of deja vu about not getting anywhere during a meeting?  Meeting problems are indicative of resistance that is generated during a meeting.  Resistance can be prevented and mitigated with professional behavior.  Here’s what to do about meeting problems. 1.  Lack of clear purpose All too frequently, meetings are held for the primary benefit…

Managing a Problem Person During Meetings

How to Manage a Problem Person During Meetings

A problem person is a meeting distraction and their message is ineffective because of some characteristic that gets in the way of clearly communicating. “Politikos” — Nature of the Problem Person The term ‘Politikos’ means ‘the science of people.  You deal more ably with participants as you gain more experience.  However, there is a certain…

Not Meeting Conflict but Voting leads to lower quality decisions

How You Can Convert Meeting Conflict into More Robust Decision-making

There is no instructional class in the world that will teach you how to facilitate a resolution to all meeting conflict.  Sometimes, people or parties refuse to agree simply because they do not like each other.  Fortunately you can rely on a three-step method that helps manage meeting conflict and secure consensus that is repeatable…

How to Facilitate Multiple Presenters

How to Facilitate a Conference with Multiple Presentations

During a recent four-day conference, we facilitated more than 20 speakers and multiple presentations with very distinctive topics ranging from embracing social responsibility to utilizing Google® Hangouts for small groups.  Our approach was highly applauded so we are sharing it with you, so that you can become a more effective facilitator. As the FAST technique instructs,…

Three Questions for Clarity and Precision

How to Be Precise with Three Transition Questions: Do NOT Ask “How Do You Solve Global Hunger?”

Transition questions are highly effective because you cannot develop a plan, any plan, such as a marketing plan, by asking “What is the marketing plan?”  The question is so broad as to be DUMB. We have learned during facilitated meetings and workshops, that it’s not easy for participants to respond to broad questions like “How…