Increase Friendliness by Avoiding Podiums

Nonverbal Expressions: How to (Not) Gesture while Facilitating

Nonverbal expressions, like words (see Facilitate Meaning, Not Words), connote multiple messages. After you finish this article, you will be strongly tempted to embrace the MG RUSH recommendation—ie; keep your elbows tucked in, your hands below your heart, and keep them open, facing up. Some would call this approach, keeping your hands to yourself. For…

Seven Deadly Sins of Facilitating

What to Do About the Seven Deadly Sins of Facilitating (in alphabetical order):

You’ve heard plenty about what to do, but the Seven Deadly Sins of Facilitating also suggest what NOT to do. The following are real, powerful, and sequenced alphabetically. Assuming: Simply because the facilitator hears what was said does not imply everyone heard what was said. The key to active listening is through reflection. Whether it’s audio…

Illustrative SIPOC: Planning Agenda Yielding Who Does What by When

A Simple Planning Agenda for Agreeing on WHO Does WHAT by WHEN

Any type of descriptive or prescriptive plan, process, or series of activities can then be illustrated with a simple process flow diagram. A process flow diagram describes WHO does WHAT by WHEN, in support of some agreed upon purpose. Therefore, here is a simple method you can use as your planning agenda. Rationale for Agreeing on a Simple Planning Agenda Groups…

Race Against Time: Speed of Decision-making

Speed of Decision-making | When Quality Not Enough

According to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Army General Martin Dempsey, “Power is no longer simply the sum of capability and capacity but now, disproportionately, it includes speed—speed of action but especially speed of decision-making.” (source: WSJ, Voices on the Future) For any consensual and well-informed decision, however, consider at least seven…

Facilitating Different Priorities

Facilitating ‘Genetic’ Differences: Similar Values with Different Priorities

Most meeting participants embrace a set of similar values with different priorities.The difference lies in their relative strength, or ranking of the values. Participants’ rankings however are not static. Their ranking modulates based on their perspective at the moment. Hiring Characteristics as an Example When selecting, interviewing, and hiring associates, most human relations experts would…

FUD Factor: Men and Women DO Change

The FUD Factor: Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt Amplify Fear, but People Change Anyway

Paradigms Paradigms are established accepted norms, patterns of behavior, or a shared set of assumptions. Shaking them causes fear, uncertainty, and doubt; also known as the FUD Factor. Paradigms provide models that establish boundaries or rules for success. Paradigms may present structural barriers to creativity based on psychological, cultural, and environmental factors. Examples include: Flow charts,…

People Learn Differently

The Way People Think Affects How You Intervene to Build Consensus

Differences — People think differently. As session leader, you empower participants and their ability to understand and communicate with each other. Additionally, you enable them to think creatively about their business. Hence, the following two subjects deal with the way people think—horizontal/ vertical thinking and paradigms. Horizontal/ Vertical Participants in a workshop argue over a seemingly…

Interactive Listening

10 Tips for Better Interactive Listening: It’s Not How You Act but How You React

For meeting participants to own the solution, they must also own the problem. Therefore, to be more effective as a facilitator, drop the first person singular terms “I” and “me”.  Additionally, stop offering solutions to ‘their’ problem, and quit judging and evaluating their contributions. Instead, challenge them to make their thinking clearer. 1. Hence, with…