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Leading effective meetings facilitator guide

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A facilitator guide for a class on leading effective meetings. It goes with this presentation - http://www.slideshare.net/LauraStaley1/leading-effective-meetings-slides.

A facilitator guide for a class on leading effective meetings. It goes with this presentation - http://www.slideshare.net/LauraStaley1/leading-effective-meetings-slides.

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  • 1. Management Skills Workshop: Leading Effective Meetings Facilitator Guide April 2, 2012 555 Main Street, Room 200 9:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m.ObjectivesBy the end of the session, participants will be able to: • Determine if a meeting is necessary. • Create an effective agenda. • Facilitate the meeting to achieve its objectives.Pre-Class Checklist • Laptop, LCD projector, remote, and speakers • Flip chart stand w/ pads • Participant certificates • Folders with PowerPoint slides and handouts for participants • Participant sign-in sheet on clipboard with pen • Extra flip chart and flip chart markers • Thumb drive with session slides and other files as necessary • Ensure special IT needs, such as computer speakers and DVD videos, are present and tested by IT specialist before class beginsTrainer • Chris BrownIT Assistance • If equipment fails to work properly, call the IT help desk: 301-555-2500Notes to the Trainer: Stress that this class is meant to be interactive. The design of the class is that of an interactive discussion with three possible exercises which can be used to allow them to apply what they have learned at those points in the class. Three experiential exercises and/or case studies have been provided for this course. You are not required, however, to use all three. That number has been provided so you can have maximum flexibility in conducting the class. You may use them as best benefits the people and the learning in the class. Throughout this facilitator guide, PowerPoint slide numbers are given when applicable (denoted by “pp”). Also, page numbers in the workbook are referenced in case you need to direct them to where that material is located (denoted by “wb”). Workbook pages are cited in topical order as found in the facilitator guide. Practical Management Skills Workshop: Leading Effective Meetings 1
  • 2. Management Skills Workshop: Leading Effective Meetings 1 hour Setting the Groundwork for Meetings (pp 1–5)Objective: Provide the participants with an idea of what the class will offer and look at common issues with meetings.Key Points: Introduce the topic of meetings and get participants thinking about meeting dynamics they have seen andexperienced – good and bad. Meetings are universal and the topic applies to experiences inside and outside of NIAID.Presentation: Welcome and facilitator introductions (pp 1) Introductions and attitudes about meetings (pp 2) o Have them introduce themselves. o As this is a networking opportunity for managers in NIAID as well as a learning opportunity, have them include their Name Position Organization in NIAID (include Office and Branch) Add this question on flipchart: “What is your expectation for today?” Note to facilitator: The last question is designed to determine their expectations for the session. What do they want to cover? o This will get them thinking about what they want to learn and about the topic in general. o This will allow you the opportunity to set the boundaries of what you can cover in a 3-hour session. o This will allow them to hear each other’s concerns and prepare how they can contribute as well as learn. o As you fill flipchart sheets, post them on the walls. Objectives: Outline what will be included in the class. (pp 3) Ground rules: Cover the ground rules on the slide and ask for any others. (pp 4) o Talk briefly about setting ground rules. o For those that feel “ground rules” is too touchy feely, the word “process” can be used as well; i.e., What process will we follow to be sure everyone is heard? o Ground rules are one of the way of creating structure around meetings. That structure is not created for its own sake, but to support the productivity of the group and build the relationship between members of the group. Both these goals make a group, or team, more effective. Small Group Exercise: (pp 5) o In their table groups, have them list 5 or more items that lead to an effective meeting and 5 or more items that lead to an ineffective meeting. o Have them report back to the large group and flipchart their results. o Debriefing question: When should I have a meeting and when should I not? Make the point that generally there should be an objective, something that needs to be accomplished. If it comes up, ask what other options there are to calling a meeting: • E-mail to the group • Telephoning someone • Distributing written documents Why might these be preferable? Practical Management Skills Workshop: Leading Effective Meetings 2
  • 3. Management Skills Workshop: Leading Effective Meetings 45 minutes Preparing for the Meeting (pp 6–13)Objective: Give a picture of what it takes to effectively prepare for a well-run meeting.Key Points: Sometimes, meetings are necessary. If the meeting is needed, then it should have a specific purpose andobjectives, have an agenda that is adhered to, and be planned for logistically.Presentation:Note to facilitator: This section of the course outline is the longest in terms of information to cover The information ismeant to build, starting with analyzing their purpose, through the steps needed to plan a meeting, and ending with adiscussion about how to handle the requirements of different types of meetings. You will not have a lot of time to dwellon any one topic or even to cover the slides point by point, so generate an interactive discussion around the pointsbelow. Effective meetings have a specific purpose and objectives. (pp 6) o Clearly state the purpose of the meeting. These can include: Exchanging information and ideas Solving problems Making decisions Gathering data o State the objectives in a way that describes the desired end result. For example: The objective of this meeting is to review three alternative proposals for reducing costs. Using a consensus decision-making process, we will select one candidate for the new position that is supported by everyone. Note to facilitator: The important point in this section is to stress that they should always have a purpose and objectives. State them in the invitation to the meeting and at the beginning of the meeting. If they create an agenda, the purpose and objectives should be included on it. The purpose of the meeting drives the type of meeting it is. It also determines many of the logistical issues, such as size of room, room layout, etc. Effective meetings are planned appropriately for the type of meeting it is. (pp 7–8) Note to facilitator: The purpose of this point is NOT to cover each and every type of meeting in depth, but to acknowledge that different types of meetings have different needs and should be planned accordingly. This should be an interactive discussion about when they should plan differently. The types of meetings listed under slide 7 are typical answers at NIAID. The types of meetings listed under slide 8 are more generic. o Ask: What kinds of meetings do you see at NIAID? How are the types of meetings you lead driven by your purposes and objectives? Flipchart the results. (pp 7) Interagency meeting Branch/section meeting Teleconference Project meeting Committee meeting o Types of meetings (possible ideas for you, the facilitator). (pp 8) A standing meeting is a regularly scheduled meeting, such as a weekly check-in with employees or a project meeting that occurs every month. A topical meeting is one that is called to discuss one specific subject, that is, work issue or project task. A presentation occurs when one or more people speak, and one moderator leads the meeting. Presentation meetings tend to be highly structured, and their purpose is usually to inform. A conference is also highly structured and can be used to solicit contributions from participants on a particular topic. An emergency meeting is used to address a crisis, and they are often called with very little advance notice. These meetings may be used to address internal problems, such as a theft in the building, or external problems, such as a sudden client problem that must be addressed immediately. A seminar is typically educational—someone with expertise provides participants with specific information. Practical Management Skills Workshop: Leading Effective Meetings 3
  • 4. Management Skills Workshop: Leading Effective Meetings o Ask: How might you need to vary the process we’ve been discussing in any of these types of meetings? Example: In a standing meeting, there might be a process in place to submit agenda items. If a presentation covers highly sensitive information, you might not want to distribute an agenda beforehand. Example: In the case of an emergency meeting, you would not have the time or the need to create an agenda, but you should still know the purpose and objective(s) of the meeting.Productive meetings have an agenda. o What to include in an agenda. (pp 11) o Inviting the participants. Some general steps to develop an agenda can include: (pp 12) Send an e-mail stating there will be a meeting, the goal of the meeting, and the administrative details such as when and where it will be. Ask participants requesting an agenda item to contact you before the meeting with their request. Summarize the agenda items in a logical way for participants • Avoid catch-all topics like “Miscellaneous Business.” • If an inappropriate request is made, suggest that person send an e-mail or memo instead or recommend that this agenda item be discussed in another meeting. • You must be realistic in the amount of time you allocate to each presenter. Dont pack an unrealistic number of agenda items into an hour meeting. Send the agenda to all the meeting participants before the meeting with a reminder of the meeting goals, location, time, and duration. If appropriate, ask attendees to review the agenda and prepare questions or information Of course, the most important part of creating an effective agenda is to follow it during the meeting! o Followup question: Do you need an agenda for every type of meeting?Note to facilitator: Direct participants to the examples of meeting agendas in their workbook on pages 10–12.Focus on the example on page 10 because it is simpler.Pairs Exercise: This exercise is designed to be a hands-on experience for them to practice developing a purposeand objectives and creating an agenda. (pp 13) o Have them think about a meeting they will be leading in the near future. . o With a partner: Decide on your purpose. Establish your objective(s). Create an agenda. o Debriefing How did the exercise go? What did you talk about with each other?Note to facilitator: Stress that this should be a short exercise, so keep it simple. Participants should assume thismeeting is meant to last an hour. Tell them to take notes because they may need this information (the purpose,objectives, and agenda) at a later time in the class.Follow-up question: What can you do when you are not leading the meeting and it gets off track? What steps canyou take as a participant to help make a meeting effective? Practical Management Skills Workshop: Leading Effective Meetings 4
  • 5. Management Skills Workshop: Leading Effective Meetings 45 minutes Conducting the Meeting (pp 12–15)Objective: To give participants the chance either to facilitate a meeting and/or participate.Key Points: Stress steps and strategies for conducting a meeting that can help lead to success. There is no set ofsteps to follow. Rather, it is good to be aware of the tools available that can be used, depending on the situation.Presentation: Steps to conducting a meeting (pp 12) Note to facilitator: Instead of going through the slide point by point, conduct an interactive discussion about how to conduct an effective meeting. The information below is for your information as the facilitator. o Start on time. o Set the context of the meeting, review the agenda. Meeting purpose Meeting objectives Agenda topics and timeframes o Assign meeting roles. (You can say: If you don’t assign roles, people will assign roles for themselves.) Time keeper – Tracks the timeframes given in the agenda. Note taker – Records decisions and action items. o Agree on ground rules and processes. Ground rules – Agreements on how the group will operate. This is especially important in recurring meetings. Meeting processes – Participation, decision making, etc. o Follow the agenda and document decisions. Track the agenda items as they are discussed and get closure on each item before going on to the next item. Decisions should be tracked and included in meeting documentation. Record all action items, including the responsible person and due dates. Create a parking lot, temporary holding areas for ideas or suggestions that are not directly on topic with the issue facing the group. • Maintain a visible list to capture these ideas. • Keep a running list during the meeting. • At the end of the meeting, review the items to see if any have been resolved during the meeting. • Poll the group for those parking lot items that should be discussed that the next meeting. o End on time. Processing decisions (pp 13) o Authoritative—leader makes the decision. o Consultative—leader consults with others, then makes the decision. o Democratic voting—all vote; majority or some weighted percentage wins. o Consensus—after everyone has had an opportunity to have their perspectives considered, all agree to support the decision even if it is not their first choice. Note: While consensus may be the most difficult to achieve, true consensus ensures the greatest commitment and buy-in from participants. Note to facilitator: It is important to stress that there are different styles of leadership in a meeting, none of them wrong. They can all be the correct style in the right circumstances. Challenges of leading meetings. o What challenges do you deal with in meetings? o What are possible solutions to these challenges? List the options on a flipchart. Note to facilitator: This is where you can discuss the challenges of dealing with problem behaviors and/or challenging people in meetings. This topic is likely to have already come up multiple times throughout the session, so, depending on how the discussion has gone, you may just take the opportunity to bring previous discussions to Practical Management Skills Workshop: Leading Effective Meetings 5
  • 6. Management Skills Workshop: Leading Effective Meetings some sort of resolution. Or, it may be the first chance you’ve had to address some of these issues. You may want to refer them to the workbook pages during this discussion as there are a number of tips for handling specific issues in those pages. Tips for meetings using technology (pp 14) Note to facilitator: Many of the steps in planning a meeting using technology are the same. You still need an objective and an agenda, but there may be other steps as well. Refer them to the Appendix in the workbook. o Ask participants for tips in leading: Teleconferences Online meetings Videoconferences Group exercise: (pp 15) o Directions: In table groups, choose one person to lead a mock meeting. That person should go back to the purpose, objectives, and agenda they developed in the pairs exercise and use it to lead the beginning of a meeting. This is a chance for someone to practice skills in leading meetings. They should choose something they want to practice. Everyone else should participate in the meeting, support the person leading the meeting, and practice any skills in participating in a meeting they want. o Some questions they can consider include: What skills would be useful for them to practice in a safe environment? What ground rules are needed? What topics might come up? How will they process decisions? What actions can they take to help the group be more effective?Note to facilitator: This is their change to practice a mock meeting. They may not get very far into the meeting, andthat’s fine. It may be part exercise and part brainstorming, if someone has a specific issue they want to work on fromtheir situation at work. This is their time to use however the group feels is best. 10 minutes Following Up on the Meeting (pp 16)Objective: Provide participants with steps to follow to maximize the progress made in a meeting.Key Points: Without follow up, progress can die after a meeting. There are steps a meeting leader can take to augmentthe results of a meeting.Presentation: Follow up (pp 16) How do you follow up after a meeting? Stress that the effectiveness of the meeting can be lost if they don’t follow up. Evaluate the outcomes against the objectives for the meeting. Follow strategies for keeping the momentum going after the meeting: o Distribute meeting minutes, including decisions and action items. o Follow up with those unable to attend. Monitor the completion of action items. Q&A Practical Management Skills Workshop: Leading Effective Meetings 6
  • 7. Management Skills Workshop: Leading Effective Meetings Wrap-up and Closing (pp 17–19)Objective: Allow participants to articulate their conceptual learning and connect it to changing their management ofmeetings.Key Points: Make the connection to their core takeaways and the session’s course objectives.Presentation: Wrap up (pp 17) o Do what you have time for. Get takeaways from participants. Play the video. Or both. o The video on that slide can be used as a humorous example of what can happen when a meeting leader does not assign meeting roles or agree on ground rules and processes— http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6hKWM5Z1zds References (pp 18) Course evaluation process (pp 19) Practical Management Skills Workshop: Leading Effective Meetings 7

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