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Category Archive: Facilitation

The Differences Between a Presentation and a Facilitation Session

There are many different ways that an organization can communicate new knowledge and ways of thinking. Two of the most popular ways are through presentations and facilitated sessions. As our corporate facilitators can tell you, there are some very distinct differences between these two styles.


By definition, a presentation is when an individual or a small group of people formally addresses a group. While many businesses will frame presentations in the context of a meeting, the typical discussion attached to a presentation occurs after presentation has concluded. This may take the form of a question-and-answer session, or it may take the form of a round-table discussion or separate meeting to discuss the findings.

Presentations will often include a string of information that begins with the problem the organization faced, the research done about the problem, conclusions made from that research and possible solutions the organization could explore.

Facilitated Sessions

A facilitated session is much more like a traditional meeting wherein all participants are working together toward solving a common problem or reaching a common goal. There is a meeting facilitator present to keep all of the participants focused on the task at hand and to provide a neutral and calm perspective within the room.

While facilitated sessions may begin with or include an informative or educational presentation, this is not the focus of the session. Instead, the focus of a session with a professional facilitator is to encourage discussion that leads the session participants to use the information provided to find or create their own solutions.

What Should My Organization Use?

Each of these styles of communication has its place within your organization. Hiring a Certified Master Facilitator is a great option when you are trying to get your company or individual teams to agree on an issue, to create a solution for a problem or to encourage a compromise between parties who cannot seem to agree. A contract facilitator can also be very useful for team-building exercises.

In contrast, presentations shine when they are used to offer information and solutions that have already been discovered. You may choose to have multiple presentations on the same topic from different individuals or groups to determine the best of the available solutions, but there is ultimately little collaboration or compromise necessary when you use presentations.

Using Engaging Strategies to Appeal to All Audiences

Your staff’s attention has wandered, and you are left wondering how to reignite their interest. Sound familiar? Unfortunately, many corporate meeting planners and business owners can attest to the difficulties of having disengaged employees. Despite the importance of the get-together and its substance, our facilitators know that a faulty delivery almost always guarantees miscommunication, which inevitably leads to mind wandering, eye rolling and halfhearted head nodding. 

The Importance of Engaging Communication

Do not let your next business meeting fall victim to otherwise avoidable problems. The corporate facilitators available through Find a Facilitator are trained to resolve the widespread issues of inattentiveness and disinterest.

The goal is not to lecture, but to persuade attendees to voice their opinions on the subject matter and contribute in a positive way. To do this, rote memorization of the content on your end is not enough. An expert is not someone who simply knows more about a particular subject than others but, rather, an individual who is also passionate, actively interested and excited.

People like this have a natural knack for attracting others with a magnetism that captivates attention and keeps the channels of communication open. The good news is that you too can become a master communicator. By implementing the below strategies practiced daily by Find a Facilitator’s extensive network of certified professional facilitators, you can expect dramatic upsurge in your audience’s interest.

The Tools Your Meetings Need

Research has shown that people who are exposed to preparatory materials have a higher chance of retaining what they learned, both in the short- and long-term. Instead of bombarding your employees with a ton of new information during the meeting, gradually introduce it to them during the days leading up to the event. Likewise, it has been found that increased blood flow to the brain is essential for peak memory recall. Get your attendees to stand, stretch and move around every 15 to 20 minutes to spike their energy levels.

We all learn by repetition. If you do something consistently for long enough, it ends up becoming a habit. Thus, you should aim to repeat key points throughout the meeting, but be sure to present them differently each time.

A final trick that has been used by many successful group facilitators for years is to use tools like alliteration and the “rule of three” to offer concise summaries about complex information.

The Importance of Facilitation in Project Planning

Every successful business venture requires a well-organized plan. Implementing a project in a concise, step-by-step way is the only way to yield consistently, positive results.

The road to success is never easy, no matter what the undertaking is. Taking shortcuts may offer a quick sense of accomplishment, but rarely do they provide one with the results they initially sought. We understand the importance of making adequate preparations before engaging any project. No matter how small or large, simple or complex, every project necessitates having a clear plan of attack and a stable foundation that will in effect prevent failure. You can’t get to where you want to be without first knowing what it is you’re trying to do. The latter is the difficult part but is absolutely essential for successful implementation and completion. There are many factors which need to be assessed before a project can be launched, and these include its overall purpose or intent, the time frame with which it needs to be completed, a clear understanding of each individual phase, as well as the duties and responsibilities of all participating team members.

This comprehensive list may seem overwhelming, but when approached in a step-by-step manner, it is actually not all that tough. Considering the fact that the first step is almost always the hardest, especially if you are working on a large project with multiple end goals, using the advice of an external party can be quite beneficial. FindaFacilitator.com has helped thousands of business owners achieve their project goals. We do this by taking the time to speak with you about your needs and expectation. By obtaining as much information as possible early on, we are able to custom-tailor a unique plan that simply works. The most important thing to remember about project planning is that open discussion is critical. Here are some reasons why effective project planning can help improve your company’s bottom line.

The Importance of Project Planning

  • Leaving no stone unturned prevents unneeded surprises; not addressing concerns or limitations early often spells the downfall of many projects. By detailing potential pitfalls from the onset, one is better equipped to resolve them if and when they do occur.
  • Increases productivity and motivation; time management is critical for the success of any project. Having a clear framework in place keeps team members on track. As well, breaking the project up into phases is great for giving people the motivational boost they need to proceed; every phase that is completed is another stepping stone to completing the main goal.

Project planning need not be complicated or overwhelming. If you need help getting started, contact one of the experts us today!

Find a Meeting Facilitator if Your Colleagues Exhibit These Traits

Company meetings should be events where colleagues collectively think and act professional. Unfortunately, some colleagues only seem capable of thinking selfishly and acting rudely at a meeting. If you work with people who disrupt company meetings with the antics mentioned below, you might need the help of a facilitator.


When the Roman Emperor Nero read his bad poetry to the Roman senators, they had to praise his writing, or he would have them killed. Some colleagues bring the same approach to the meeting table—if you question their ideas, they take it as an insult, and resort to arguing to save their pride. That is better than resorting to man-eating lions, as Nero did, but it still takes the meeting in a bad direction. A meeting facilitator can keep meetings on track by diffusing someone’s oversensitive reactions.


Some people are the Energizer Bunnies of the boardroom—they keep talking and talking and talking and…you get the point. In most cases, these longwinded soliloquists have the best intentions—they want to communicate what they think is important information. In reality, their speech could be used as a sleep therapy. If a colleague’s loquaciousness is taking the “group” out of group meetings, hiring a meeting facilitator could help.

Gum Chewing

Without blowing a single bubble, corporate gum chewers can make their flexing jowls the visual focus of a meeting. Even worse is when they speak and chew gum at the same time, which makes them look like smart alecks, whether they are or not. The best way to diffuse gum chewers before their cud causes a disturbance is to remind them of company etiquette, or simply moo at them until they get the point.

Side Conversation

Having a side conversation during a meeting is rude—it disrespects the speaker, distracts people’s attention, and gives the impression that the conversationalists have something better to discuss than the topic of the meeting. While a brief side exchange between colleagues is usually acceptable, conversing in a way that would make a schoolteacher say “do you have something you’d like to share” is not.


If employees agreed on everything, a company would lack intellectual diversity. Some employees seem dedicated to being flies in the ointment. Are they dissatisfied with their salary? Are they just passionate about the company? One can never know for sure. One thing is certain—silencing a colleague who thrives on negativity can require the help of a meeting facilitator.

When Should You Hire a Meeting Facilitator?

Meeting facilitators cannot cure bad personalities, but they can keep meetings on track and help colleagues to arrive at productive solutions by employing facilitation strategies. If the antics of your colleagues are sabotaging your company’s meetings, hiring a facilitator from FindaFacilitator could help to restore order. To learn more about our services, call us today.

Team Facilitation: Five Problems that Make Teams Ineffective

In his famous book on team dynamics, The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, Patrick Lencioni identifies five problems that teams frequently encounter, regardless of their size or goals. If your team suffers from one or more of Lencioni’s “dysfunctions” listed below, they can resolve these issues through group facilitation provided by FindaFacilitator.

Absence of Trust

Absence of trust could have several causes, but its results are always the same: team members become polarized and their chemistry suffers. Lack of trust due to past mistakes, employees attempting to protect their reputation, and employees who have control issues could all be causes of absence of trust. 

Team facilitation can help teams understand how certain behaviors and outlooks contribute to lack of trust, and how to resolve these issues for the sake of teamwork.  

Fear of Conflict

Most people have worked with someone who thrives on conflict, and were eager to see the person go. People who avoid conflict can be problematic too. When business could be handled better, it is the responsibility of the person who notices the problem to not let it persist, regardless of the potential reaction. 

Often, fear of conflict has less to do with non-assertiveness than a lack of trust. If team members can trust each other to interpret criticism in a non-personal way, they can feel free to point out necessary changes.

Lack of Commitment

From poor compensation to inefficient project management, anything that dampens a team’s motivation or hinders its progress will likely affect its commitment. Consequently, team facilitation that focuses on commitment often addresses the issue that makes commitment difficult.

In some instances, resolving poor commitment requires the participation of other teams or departments in a second facilitation session. 

Avoidance of Accountability

No one wants to be accountable for mistakes, but the more that team members “pass the buck,” the less they function as a team. Different teams have different accountability structures, and facilitators help them assess whether their structure is right for their work process, and if so, how to make it more efficient. 

Inattention to Results

Inattention to results refers to a team’s inattention to the success or failure of certain practices. Often, teams perpetuate an ineffective practice due to tradition, lack of insight, poor project management, etc. As a result, a facilitator often identifies “inattention to results” as a team discusses a problem that is caused by the inattention.