Any leader in today’s complex world needs facilitation skills. The skills are required for good collaboration and consensus building. OneOC, the Santa Ana, CA- based consulting company dedicated to leadership training for non-profits, has offered a workshop to teach facilitation skills. The workshop course will help participants do the following:
- Learn facilitation skills that enhance consensus building.
- Learn the questions that stimulate candid feedback and guide discussion.
- Acquire a framework for good group process( both for small groups and a multi-day process).
- Assemble detailed action plans in less time.
A significant skill to this learning is the ability to ask good questions, which fosters meaningful group discussion. Involving the whole group provides authenticity to the discussion and helps the group think through difficult issues. So staff meetings, Board meetings, building a team – as well as workshops – can all be enhanced by skilled facilitation.
By example, I would like to provide a recent discussion that took place. I had given information, instructions to a recipient. After I was finished I might have said:
“Do you understand the information? This question focuses on the recipient – asking his/her capability to grasp the information.
Did I make myself clear? This question reflects my ability to explain or not to explain the information clearly.
Does this information make sense? This question allows the responder to concentrate only on the facts or information and leaves personality out of the response.
If asking information-seeking questions is difficult, the skill can be practiced. I have seen clients write a list of questions in preparation for a meeting. And I recommend the OneOC workshop for those who wish to perfect their skills.
Author: Adrianne Geiger DuMond, Executive Coaches of Orange County, www.ECofOC.org