Each workshop is a shared leg on our longer journeys. We come together around a common objective—or to create a common objective, if none exists yet—and have a limited amount of time to diagnose the problem, explore possible solutions, and chart our path forward. Whether a few hours, a few days, or spread out over a year, workshops are about focusing our attention to make tangible progress on a given challenge.
My job as a facilitator is to protect the process, maintaining the space that participants fill with content and direction. Every collaborative space is unique, so I have no standard templates or off-the-shelf agendas. I work with partners to understand their paths to this shared space, the story we’ll create together, and the momentum they’ll need coming out the other side. I draw from traditions of community organizing, strategy, and design, remixed with other approaches. Yes, there will probably be lots of sticky notes—but the broader arc matters more than the specific exercises.
- annual retreats for teams looking back at their prior year;
- strategy meetings for broad coalitions getting ready to launch new campaigns;
- multi-partner learning exchanges;
- internal capacity assessments;
- global landscape mappings;
- and much more.
Read what I’ve written about facilitation: