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Art of LeadershipPerformance

10 things I learned about facilitating a 100 person meeting

By October 10, 2013No Comments

group discussion

Never try to sit in one large circle – seems like the people across from you are on another continent. Always put something beautiful in the center of the circle.

2. Give clear, sharp, and timely directions. Give them repeatedly. Do not be afraid of saying the same thing thrice, because someone has not heard you the first two times.

3. If you want everyone “back at 10:30” say, “Please be back at 10:20.” Then prepare to start at 10:40. 100 people = slow-moving-molasses-type-movement. Plus, there are peanut M&M’s to congregate around.

4. Start with a workshop on listening, inclusion, and equity. Especially the listening part. Especially the inclusion part. Especially the equity part.

5. Make room for introverts with some structured time, some spacious space, and some time to sit in silence.

6. Have a team of 3-5 facilitators who are observing the energy of the room and ready to take emergent, appropriate action. Make sure to ask them for help.

7. If you are the organizer, do not be overly self-reliant. See #6.

8.  Make sure there is not a heat wave, before packing your new fall wardrobe.  Or.  Pack for all weather possibilities.

9.  Actually sit down, and eat meals, and have conversations with all the lovely people you’ve brought together. Eat slowly. Talk leisurely. Take them in.

10. Prepare to fall in love one hundred times, even with people you thought you already knew. Recall that this is why you do this in the first place. But do not repeat for another 18 months.


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