The purpose of strategic facilitation is to reinforce cooperation. People come to meetings with their own insights, experiences, preferences and histories. They bring their personality. There are relationships, power distance and possibly conflicts. But they share a common taks or purpose: they have to come up with an analysis, a proposal, a plan, a decision.
Facilitation makes it easier to do this. It’s an answer to the question how to work better together.
It’s more than regulating conversation traffic. That would be the presidency of a meeting or committee. It’s about deliberately designing a context for collaboration. And about guiding the group through a designed process.
This requires preparation and knowledge of facilitation techniques. Question to answer during the preparation are:
- How to make sure people are willing to share their assets (information, knowledge, networks, …)?
- How to make sure every useful piece of information, idea or. intuition gets shared?
- How to leave the phase of brainstorming and to come to action?
- How to make sure people commit themselves to the decisions and actions they have defined?
- How to go from idea to plan to action?
- How to document the decision that has been made?
Otolith uses facilitation for both established teams and for temporary associations of talent (TAT). In agile environments we use it to launch teams that have been recently created. And sometimes we install facilitation as an approach to install ownership. Because facilitation allows people to take ownership of whatever that has to be decided. It helps people to shape their future.
Our consultants are trained in Strategic Doing (TM), Metaplan (TM), Lego Serious play, visual harvesting or other facilitation methods.