More and more business initiatives and change efforts get done with groups of various members from the organisation. In some cases these teams include customers or suppliers. The larger the group is or the bigger the topic being covered is, the greater there is a need for facilitating the group’s meeting in order to help it make progress, reach agreements and deliver actions in a quicker and more efficient way. Many of us have experienced project meetings that went well and created a lot of energy and motivation. Unfortunately, we often experience meetings that don’t go as well and leave us with the wish we didn’t spend all that time. The cost of an ineffective group meeting can be detrimental to the whole project and people involved.
A facilitator is someone who enables groups and organisations to work more effectively by solving problems and devising strategies together. The facilitator role is often separated from the meeting participants or leader for an important reason: facilitation involves managing group work processes and dynamics, influencing the way team members work together and driving greater agreement, consensus and a clear vision of the future. The nature of this role requires a high level of neutrality about the actual content of the meeting or its participants. Facilitators simply enable groups to succeed in achieving their goals. Facilitators bring a positive structure to meetings. This structure ensures the right resources are in the room, useful information is generated, shared and used, quality decisions and positive agreements are made and implemented and the desired results are realised.
Facilitators can be found in business, government, non-profit organisations, education, and more.