Meeting Facilitation And Participation – The Truth About Assessing Whether A Facilitation Session Works

Question:I’ve been working as a clinical consultant for the past three years, and have facilitated a variety of staff, team, and executive retreats. How do you decide if a retreat has real value, a good return on investment, and an opportunity to deliver a tangible value to an organization?

Answer: We start with the facts. Before deciding anything it’s first important to determine whether there are:”

black and white typewriter keyboard

Some of the following questions are also helpful:

So, with a little thought, planning, and preparation any company can find ways to bring a facilitator to the table to assist with working with teammates:

The M: of team building

Indeed, this is a bit of an oversimplification, but it’s representative of what any stakeholder needs to ask: “Do I have a “VENUE” to work in – a venue, a venue with a couch, a chair, chairs, table, a refreshments, and maybe even tea/coffee? Or, do I need a ” scathing marshal to show up out of his or her way, trampling over one’s subordinates either in the process or co-pper against the will of all that needs to survive?”

In reality, the entire organization has to be “in the room”, a “player.” People want to be in a “bond” with others who either are “playing” together or have bought into the game – in order to work better.

If all owners and executives are not participating, none will produce any more in market share, profits, or success (Take Harry Bond, for example. Or was your GE CEO told that we need a better PM? When that occurs, it’s imperative to have a ” PM” – a team/facilitator.)

There are plenty of facilitators that have a “bond” with the executives, but few will help move people to have “cooperation” amongst each other. And most companies hire the cylunes that they’ve actually built – they won’t let me even begin to list the high-maintenance techniques, the “give run” or “fear tactics” to relax and provide another take on the ” closet commit” – but they never get to provide analysis on the work that was done previously to enable “team work” and produce “productivity.” They also never analyze the “function use” of the individual players, organize co-op strategies, and introduce energy to the environment from which innovations will emerge.

Recognition to quote a famous and distinguished manager/coach, Roger Enrico, “All the winning of the Super Bowl is won by a team, and a winning team is composed of two men, both brilliant, but one brilliant from the region where the other may be brilliant — and every other brilliant.”

Who has the best interpersonal skills/competency to drive the event

Who the organizational/team receptionists are at – a big laugh here

Who from the inside can defuse the anger, dispersion, resentment, and anxiety – they know!

Who has the best written presentation to illustrate the process and the opportunity – a dramatic, but highly focused presentation, a handout detail, an overview of the organization/team/project’s goals, or a bullet-point list

Who is the best negotiator and who is a go-to though – a smoke-and-mirrors deal, a win-win where one side pays for many of the items on the list

What are the key cultural issues that will affect success and not succeed – manage the players

Is the event going to be a company/team sponsors-only event, or is it each employee’s commitment to participate?

Does the event have a “reminder” of the events prior to the start date? Does it have an agenda to cover during the event?

What are the key networking opportunities at the venue

Is this a “free” event, or are there institutes, things like sponsorships, membership, and more?

Hint – is there room for a little “self time”?

black and white building illustration