Meetings that produce results by tapping into the creativity and collective genius of the people
A satisfied client noted with laughter that the phrase ‘Whole Person Process Facilitation’ describes the success of this meeting methodology when the phrase is broken down into working with the ‘Whole Person’ and working with the ‘Person Process’ and working via ‘Process Facilitation’.
We use only highly participative engaging meeting methodologies. Our goal is to assist our clients to achieve their goals by creating meetings that tap into the individual and collective genius of the participants and access both intuitive and intellectual knowledge. The primary meeting methodologies that we use are Open Space Technology when a truly open participative meeting process is suitable and Whole Person Process Facilitation when a more guided approach is needed. Both are congruent in approach so they work well in tandem also. Often a Whole Person Process Facilitated meeting precedes the Open Space Technology meeting to prepare for the Open Space Technology meeting. Often a Whole Person Process Facilitated meeting follows the Open Space Technology meeting to assist in implementation. Whole Person Process facilitated meetings have a proven track record for success in:
- strategic planning including implementation plans
- visioning including identification of key strategic directions
- policy development and implementation strategies including procedural protocols
- development of business ethics including implementation plans
- development of strategies and implementation plans for successful communication, excellent staff morale, high level quality of work life, excellent patient/client/customer service, improved labor/management relations, successful curriculum design, successful work process redesign
- revitalization of congregational life
- addressing gender issues
- addressing diversity issues
- finding solutions to violence and conflict in the workplace
In a separate document please read about “What is involved in bringing a Whole Person Process Facilitation meeting into your organization?”
There are many things to pay attention to in facilitating a meeting with a group, in ensuring good process facilitation. We go beyond good process facilitation, recognizing the unseen world of intuitive knowledge including the collective consciousness as valuable assets for any organization to work from. Whole Person Process Facilitation works well with groups from 6-150 people and in meetings from 3 hours in length to several days.
There are many theories and frameworks covering each of the components, including those regarding energy work and working with intuition. I have chosen theories and frameworks that I have found to work in enabling learning in adults consistently and what many who work with me say is like “magic”. What I offer here is not the “only way”. Its usefulness is that it works; it has a good track record, is transferable to any situation, is duplicable and is simple.
Meetings of any kind are useful only if learning is taking place. There is certainly preparation required. My promise to you is that through this way of facilitating process, learning is enhanced, potential is tapped into that has lain dormant, and in the end, it takes less time and time is used more effectively. The group benefits and achieves outcomes, usually beyond their expectations.
In using process facilitation, the components that are attended to in designing the meeting include:
- Creating an accepting rather than defensive climate. Placement of chairs, role of food, other décor, attitude and responses. Being conscious of the implications of actions and behaviors of the facilitator.
- Introductions. The difference between authenticity and icebreakers.
- Hopes and fears as a way of identifying objectives.
- Right placement of your statement of objectives for your meeting/teaching session.
- Adult learning styles using the Learning Style Inventory.
- Right brain + Left Brain + easily connecting integrated use of the two = whole brain learning and problem solving.
- Transfer in and bridging exercises.
- Varying the levels the facilitator works on-in front of group, with group, apart from group.
- Maximizing energy of the group by doing activities singularly, in pairs, triads, fours, whole group. How and when to use each of these and how to use them to work with each other to keep the energy high.
- Attending to energy of the facilitator. Taking care of the facilitator.
- Working beyond the information that is provided by the five senses and intellectual knowledge.
- Feedback tied into hopes and fears. Evaluation that is useful and also part of the ongoing learning experience
Guiding questions that I ask myself when I am designing and conducting a process facilitated meeting include:
- Do I have a way of introductions that already taps into whole brain thinking so that I can get the “whole person” including brain and heart into the room quickly?
- Have I given people a chance to express hopes and fears, identifying their right to have emotions in the meeting?
- Have I created opportunities for intuitive knowledge to be expressed
- Am I attending to creating an accepting rather than defensive climates – my inner work on myself in “parking my baggage at the door” and my attention to what takes place in our session?
- Preparation is more than content. It is self. Have I prepared both myself and the content?
- Have I created opportunities for all learning styles to benefit?
- Have I kept things simple in structure to allow for maximum learning?
- Are my transfer in and bridging exercises good ones for what I am intending to achieve?
- Have I paid attention to the different levels that I work on to facilitate learning – with the group, apart from the group, in front of the group?
- Level of consciousness about my actions/behavior?
- Staggering learning – pacing as an attunement to energy-attention to when work is to be singular, in pairs, triads, fours, and whole group. Is the timing for each component thought out?
- How have I attended to right brain/left brain learning throughout?
- How have I attended to intuition throughout?
With Whole Person Process Facilitation, we stay with a basic design, but make adjustments as we meet the needs of the group and to ensure that the group works towards the outcomes it has stated as its objectives for meeting.