- Slides: 35
Gen. Cap Technical Workshop Facilitation Skills (Meetings, Facilitation, Coordination) Geneva – 22 February, 2012 Trainer: Jérôme L’host
To share some successful Facilitation best practices To experience stage heat and work on the Execution Gap To discuss and sort out real-life issues (Co-development Mode)
To Know To Want The Execution Gap To Do
Effective group meetings really boil down to three things: 1. They achieve the group's objective. 2. They take up a minimum amount of time. 3. They leave participants feeling that a sensible process has been followed.
The Meeting's Objective Do you want a decision? Do you want an agreement ? Do you want to generate ideas? Are you getting status reports? Are you communicating something? Are you raising awareness ? Are you trying to influence ? Are you making plans? Are you co-ordinating ?
Focus, Focus and…Focus To help you determine what your meeting objective is, complete this sentence: At the close of the meeting/session, I want the group to. . . (Consider your next 2 meetings)
To prepare an agenda, consider the following factors: • Priorities – what absolutely must be covered? • Results – what do we need to accomplish at the meeting? • Participants – who needs to attend the meeting for it to be successful? • Sequence – in what order will you cover the topics? • Timing – how much time will you spend on each topic? • Date and Time – when will the meeting take place? • Place – where will the meeting take place?
Diamond Facilitation Structure io ns pa Ex Issue ID / D n Information Immersion c en rg ive e Opportunity Area Identification, Common Interest Innovation / Idea Generation/ Possibilities/ Proposals Criteria Setting Idea Selection/ Agreement e g r ve n Synthesis/Discussion Action Plan c en o / C Fo s u c
Example: Stages in collective decisions • • • Sharing information Prioritization of issues Constructing proposals Collective action decisions Monitoring/evaluation
Facilitated reflection Q 1 - What is facilitation ? Q 2 - What is expected from a Facilitator ?
Beyond a definition… • Facilitation means making all group interactions easier; • Facilitation helps groups and organisations identify and resolve difficult issues; • It provides unique solutions to unique needs; • It is based on techniques that are only appropriate or inappropriate, not right or wrong; • Facilitation is based on perception; it is not an exact science.
A GOOD FACILITATOR … • • • Is empathic Is results-oriented Masters process Is firm on outcome Is flexible on tactics Is energetic Listens actively Is good at non-verbals Involves everyone Pauses and reflects
Interaction between Trainer & Participant high low Facilitation Modes Moderating Stimulating Proposing Telling Empowering Trainer’s contribution to content Interaction among participants Ownership of outcome by participants Participants’ level of knowledge Energy in the audience Time available Facilitation Modes is designed by Sabine Bhanot and Jerome L’Host based on ideas of John Townsend and Arthur D. Little
Facilitation Modes: definitions TELLING means transmitting information rapidly PROPOSING means selling an idea MODERATING means encouraging productive conversations STIMULATING means encouraging a richly creative environment EMPOWERING means enabling the group to manage itself - My Comfort Zone Look at the five intervention modes to see where you feel most comfortable, especially under pressure. Ask a friend or colleague for feedback. Then imagine yourself operating, at your best, in an intervention mode that is « new » for you. Do the exercise many times until you feel at ease. Start practising in your next meeting.
What is coordination? CO-llectively put things in ORDER Working together towards shared goals A voluntary process Usually without clear vertical authority “Facilitating different people to work together for a goal or effect” • Coordination skills are for everyone involved, not just for “coordinators. ” • • •
What sort of coordination? • “Facilitatingdifferent Why/when do we need to coordinate? people to work together for a goal or effect” • Whom do we coordinate with? But most of the time we are not coordinating we are coordinating with them. • others, Do I “coordinate others” or “coordinate with Coordination is a voluntary process others”? • What does it feel like to “be coordinated” by someone else?
• How do we know if coordination is working? • How do we know when it is not working?
Coordination is a negotiation process • “Facilitatingdifferent Do we really all have the same objectives? people to work together for a goal or effect” • Usually, each stakeholder has a different agenda But most of the time we are not coordinating we are coordinating with them. • others, We each engage in coordination only if we think Coordination is a voluntary process we will achieve more of our own objectives that way than by working alone. • It has costs and benefits
Coordination as negotiation: Benefits & Costs + Avoid duplication • More work Avoid contradiction • Compromises External appearance of unity • Dependencies Build relationships • Damage relationships Information-sharing Efficiency? • Slower
Put yourself in their shoes – Analyze each group’s interests, positions, objectives. Do we all have common interests? – What can they get out of coordinating with me/us? Can they do better than their expectations? – How can I help them achieve their objectives and get more out of this coordination relationship?
The coordinator as mediator • Since coordination is negotiation, sometimes a neutral party can help diverse groups find their zone of possible agreement. • A good coordinator encourages participation and buy-in from parties whose absence would obstruct others. • A coordinator helps parties look behind their positions and identify interests that might be shared with others. • A coordinator uses a problem-solving approach to overcome obstacles to agreement.
Coordination as facilitation and cooperation • Sometimes coordination fails to produce results, even when the parties involved have shared objectives and would all benefit from jointly coordinating their efforts. Opportunities are wasted. • Why? • Process problems. – Poor management of the process – Bad meetings, – Wasted time – Pointlessly obstructive behavior…
Meetings or no meetings? • Coordination does not aim to meet • It aims to achieve action and change. • A meeting is just a tool - to be used only when it is the right tool to get the job done.
Problems in coordination • Hierarchy and uneven power relationships • Favoritism or bias • Conflict of interest • Weak participation
Meeting problems • Unclear objectives • Group size • Agenda size/complexity • Lack of key actors • Disruptive behavior
Dealing with difficult participants What is a difficult participant ? How to deal with them ? Group dynamics Acknowledge receipt
Committed Acceptance Group Dynamics and behavior Torn apart Golden Triangle g n i at t i s e H Passive Grouchy Opposing Rebellious Antagonism
Dealing with dysfunctional behavior - Late comers - Mobile phones abusers - Side talks - Pax having an argument - « Oysters » - « Clowns » - « Dinosaurs » - Doodlers You name it…
Acknowledge receipt The ‘acknowledge receipt’ is a tool which enables the facilitator to face attacks, objections, or aggression from others. It consists in a simple technique divided into four phases, all of them being equally essential. 1. ‘Listen’ till the last note, and ‘quiet’ By listening and keeping silent you show the other person a genuine interest in his/her concern, and you also give him/her the opportunity to calm down and become less aggressive (should that be the case). Moreover after having listened and understood the question you are able to formulate your answer with care and accuracy. 2. Constructive reformulation This phase puts emphasis on the other person’s issue by showing him/her that you acknowledged receipt of his/her question or objection, that you received and understood his/her message. This phase also helps you to dig the positive side out of the question; it gives you indication on how to formulate your answer. Examples: Q. What you are saying is abstract… A. So if I understand well, you are looking for a concrete way of… Q. I have been doing this job for the past 20 years, and I can tell you that… A. I can see you have a long experience…
3. Answer The person asking the question usually expects from you a real answer – it should be clear, concise, and as complete as possible (if not, (s)he will not miss the opportunity to come back with the same issue). 4. Return-question ‘Returning the question’ means re-opening the debate in a positive direction (remember ‘the questioner is usually the leader’). The objective of such a phase consists either in making sure your answer was satisfying to the other person, or in enlarging the debate with your whole team (discussion, argumentation, brainstorming, etc. ).
Dealing with objections – Practice session Objection Reformulation
HOW TO MODERATE ? • Know the Mental Models: images, assumptions and stories people carry in their minds. Chain Reaction (or simplified Ladder of Inference) (developed by C. Argyris and D. Schon - « The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook » ) Conclusions (Actions) Concluding Assumptions (Meaning) Data (Facts) Discovering
HOW TO MODERATE ? • Explore and moderate Mental Models To avoid people battling over conclusions, you might: • Explain briefly the concept of Ladder of Inference Ask for clarification: « Can you help me understand how you came to this conclusion ? » , « Give me some data … » • Ask others in the group what they think about the conclusion reached by one participant
BIBLIOGRAPHY / RESOURCES www. Thiagi. com www. Facilitutor. com The Skilled Facilitator - Roger Schwarz The Art of Facilitation - Dale Hunter, Anne Bailey, Bill Taylor The Facilitator’s Fieldbook - Thomas Justice & David W. Jamieson