Facilitation: behind the scenes

If you’ve ever been to a facilitated workshop or event you’ll be familiar with the role of the facilitator: the person who welcomes everyone, encourages participation in engagement activities, introduces guests, highlights the key messages of the speakers, asks thought provoking questions, explains the engagement activities and ensures the group stays on task.

The purpose of facilitation can be to create a shared vision, identify challenges, opportunities and priorities and develop options.

Having clear facilitation objectives is essential to getting a successful outcome and ensures the right approach when planning.

There’s a lot more to facilitating meaningful discussions between different stakeholders, often business, community and government, than meets the eye.

To ensure the facilitation objectives are met, a lot of work happens behind the scenes.

The behind the scenes tasks include:

  • Agenda development including key topics, speakers, engagement activities
  • Coordination and management of speakers and engagement materials
  • Invitations to ensure the right people are involved in the discussions to maximise the outputs
  • Optimal presentation of information during the event
  • Information gathering and post event analysis

The more thought, planning and organisation that happens before the facilitated discussions, the more confident, relaxed and energised the facilitator can be.

Notwithstanding the need for pre-facilitation planning, an important part of facilitation is also being able to read the energy of the room and be flexible with timeframes and activities to adapt to the audience. Facilitation is dynamic and doesn’t always go to plan.

To find out more about our experienced facilitators and facilitation services please get in touch.