Jan 12, 2022 | by Budi Tanrim
Facilitation: Managing discussions
The problem with most meetings? One person talks, then the other person replies, and someone else shares a new idea. Poof, 10 minutes gone. Not to mention, the conversation could quickly get drifted to something irrelevant.
In general, those back-and-forth discussions are ineffective. One of the goals of the facilitator is to manage the discussion effectively.
Here’s a quick tactic you can try: Working together, alone.
Before the meeting, ask yourselves, “If I have the meeting now, what kind of questions would I ask? What discussion point should we have?”
For example, you want to ask three of your team members about their challenges. Instead of letting them share it one by one, you can make that into a working session. Here’s how it might look.
In the first three minutes, you explain the goal. Standing in front of the whiteboard, then, you ask them, “Please write down your challenges on post-its in silence.” You then set the timer for 5 minutes. After that, you should see a lot of post-its with challenges on the whiteboard. Just in 5 minutes.
Then, you organize them. You find similar ones and group them. This part is tricky, and we’ll talk more about that later in this series.
But in the end, a working session is better. You get more ideas. You allow everyone to voice their opinion. You get more things done. Not just that, you get to avoid groupthink.