Lesson 3: Facilitating Shared Power

Leading the Standard Meeting Practice

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Goals for this Lesson

  • Learn how to guide your meetings through a democratic process with clarity and action
  • Understand Collab’s collective agenda building process to increase engagement and enjoyment in your meetings:
    • Learn how to sort and process issues efficiently
    • Reduce time spent in meetings through our rapid decision-making process
    • Develop your skills to complete meetings with clear next actions

Learning Activities

  1. Read pages 103-111 in the Instructional. Ponder the question “What might my team need to do or hear to prepare them for this kind of practice?”
  2. Review in detail the Facilitator core role card on pages 53-54 in the Instructional.
  3. Watch the Lesson 3 training video (below).
  4. Review all of the aspect cards (pages 26-39 in the Instructional). These are the Seven Conversations.
  5. Review all of the cards for the Standard Meeting Practice (pages 41, 60-64, 66-67, 72-73 in the Instructional). These will be a great hands on resource for you and your team once you start to take these practices on.
  6. Scan pages 113-116, 121-129 in the Instructional. These activities will be something you take on with your team, when you’re ready, and the examples of where you’ll be heading (policies, protocols) will continue to be important to review, so bookmark them!
  7. Check out the supplemental materials (below).

Training Video

*Click the full screen arrows on the bottom right corner of the video to enter full screen. 

Materials

Tips and Tricks

  • We recommend printing out at least the cards, if not the whole Instructional. You’ll need these in front of you when you introduce these practices to your team.
  • You can search for keywords on our website and in the Collab™ Instructional to find places where we discuss some of these key terms! (Just go to the search bar in the top right of the course platform or press ctrl-f in the Instructional.)

Forums

Prompts:

What experience do you have facilitating meetings in your organization or other organizations? What are your thoughts on what you have learned?

**Do you have some thoughts about how we can improve the course?  Please take a few minutes to give us feedback here!

6 Comments

  1. Julia

    In the Q&A one of my current tensions come up, namely what are good ways to introduce Collab to a group (or vice versa) since all the info, terms, etc. can feel overwhelming? I think this has also been asked & answered elsewhere in lessons or material. It could be great to edit those clips into a kind of video Q&A, for additional reference.

    Reply
    • Rebecca Fisher McGinty

      Great idea Julia. Thanks for that tip! We’ll explore the ways that we can make that happen!

      Reply
  2. Anna

    In my workplace, we practice a process very similar to what was presented here. I appreciate that each of our circles has a different facilitator because you get to experience different leadership styles. We elect the facilitator, so through that there are also people who step up that might not if we were just asking for volunteers.

    I like the idea of having different process flows for processing various types of tensions. It seems like that would bring a lot of clarity to the meeting, although I imagine it takes a lot of practice to really get good at identifying what type of tension something is.

    The thing I like most about facilitation through these meeting processes is that there’s freedom for facilitator and participants alike to make mistakes in how you present or process something, and freedom to start over and try again. People need to come prepared, but not with a full script and little room for mistake, like in many meetings. There’s actually room for growth, learning, and breathing life into the process, as well as the work.

    I also appreciate the distribution of power and participatory nature that the facilitator/scribe roles bring into the team, as opposed to the manager-run meeting.

    In my experience, facilitated meetings tend to be much more productive, easy to follow, and easy to stay engaged in, than typical meetings.

    Reply
    • Cecile Green

      Hey Anna! So great to hear that your team has integrated some practices that make meetings better:) I too love the supportive and forgiving nature of a clear shared structure. And the ability to sort tensions comes fairly easily especially if you start with: “is this a pattern, project or about a person or personal issue between people?” Bring some examples of tensions from your meetings to one of the next live calls and we can walk through those with you. Wonderful to have you in the course!

      Reply
  3. Noemi

    Here is a way of thinking about the Standard Meeting Practice that I thought I would share. To me it is like a meal with courses (soup to nuts), but also like a sandwich. What I like about the sandwich analogy is that in a situation where people do not have a culture or practice of coming on time and leaving at the end of the meeting, it might still be possible as facilitator to hand each of them a “meeting sandwich”–a capsule version of the SMP–when they do show up. I.e., at whatever point people show up, they can be quickly accommodated & oriented (admin), welcomed and asked how they are (check-in), told that they will be asked to report briefly on their updates, and given a chance to add items to the agenda. When people leave, they can be reminded to check for meeting outcomes and next meeting date (wrap) and at least have a chance to say goodbye (close). I will be experimenting with this “meeting sandwich”/SMP to-go in various meetings.

    Reply
  4. Noemi

    Something that stood out for me in this training video was the idea that the practice of having “tension holders” who decide when their tension has been adequately addressed is a way of handing power back and forth between the facilitator and participants. I think that is a really great concept to keep in mind, because otherwise the facilitator would hold way too much power.

    Reply

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