Meeting facilitation… 4 factors that have impact

I’ve just had the pleasure to facilitate a three-day strategy meeting for 60 delegates/5 major brands from all over the world (along with 4 of my great colleagues!)

It was a pleasure not just because of the excellent location – Montpellier in the sunny south of France  – but also …

due to a real sense of achievement.  The level of dialogue and learning from enthusiastic and thoughtful participants added real value: analysis, self-critical reflection and joint innovation, as well as a good measure of fun.

Participants were able to take back not only knowledge and ideas, but the will, confidence and motivation to change the way they will strategically and tactically approach their business strategies.

How did this happen? What are the factors that allow this quarterly event to have such great impact?

I think there are 4 main reasons (and a lot of other smaller ones!):

1.    Adequate time, space and knowledge to reflect on established views and explore new ideas in small groups

2.    Delegate diversity: being nudged out of your comfort zone by someone with opposing or differentiated views forces you to question and learn

3.    Logical build-up of the agenda: taking delegates to increasing levels of complexity step by step and providing them with clear and challenging questions to steer their thoughts and views to focus on results

4.    The element of fun: it’s not only energising to throw in the element of fun, but also a real eye-opener for delegates who learn so much more about each other

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It’s great how much you can achieve with a diverse and enthusiastic group of delegates, a well formed agenda, a glut of post-it notes and a packet of sweatbands!

Roll on the next one!