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I recently had the opportunity to review another facilitator’s agenda for a two-day strategic planning meeting. It got me to thinking that his “mistakes” are ones that we frequently see.  If you design and/or facilitate planning meetings, my responses should suggest design considerations and techniques for facilitating strategic planning sessions for you too.   So here are my comments to him, edited for clarity.  Do YOU make these mistakes?

  • Your agenda is overly-ambitious. Don’t try to conquer the world; instead, define one to two key outcomes that you will accomplish.  In-depth discussion always takes more time than you expect, so allow more time for discussion.    Don’t cram it so tight that folk can’t meaningfully discuss options. Allow time for the unexpected … you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
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  • I don’t see a formal place in your agenda for establishing meeting norms. Although I often think before a meeting that “this group won’t need that” for one reason or another, I almost always find myself coming back to it later because the group isn’t working as efficiently as it might. I’d suggest that you incorporate a norm-setting discussion and have the collected norms posted in all of the breakout areas. EVERY group needs to formally agree FOR TODAY on how it will act together; this sets a powerful contract that helps you govern the meeting later. Remember it.
  • For each of the 10 areas in which you’d like to see gains, I would suggest that each group clarify the vision prior to brainstorming potential actions.  This is more than a wordsmithing task: before one can do a real gap analysis (which is what you seem to be attempting), you need a factual understanding of where you are now as well as a clear picture of what you’re trying to create. Your overarching vision serves to keep all of your strategies in alignment, but without finer details in each of the 10 areas, participants in each of the 10 groups don’t specifically know what they’re aiming for. The end result is that any idea or strategy is a “good” one because it generally moves us in the right direction. And each is an equally bad one because we don’t know what we’re really going for. When push comes to shove, we don’t know which one is more important. What if money starts to become tight? Which will be “priority” then?
  • I’m assuming that the “Review of Research (20 minutes)” is where you factually describe the current reality. If it is, it seems to be very short in duration. Before people can develop cogent strategy, they have to understand where they are now. treating acne I suggest that the team leader email the participants the data two weeks prior to the event, along with the stated expectation that everyone will read and understand the material.  Then he should follow up a week later and solicit their questions.  This doesn’t guarantee that everyone will have read and understood the data, but it certainly makes it more likely.
  • How will you document the ground covered and decisions reached in the various sessions? You don’t want to be retreading the same ground in a meeting a year from now, so good documentation and distribution is essential. Pay for a documenter, or more than one for concurrent sessions. College students are good choices here.
  • What accountability structure will you put in place to determine action on your plans and progress toward your goals? The real work begins, of course, when people leave the room, and that is also when all of the other pressures of life enter in and tend to squeeze out our best intentions. You will want to avoid the “great thinking/no action” dynamic that can be characteristic of events such as these, so how will the members of this group hold one another accountable? How will you build in regular feedback? Rewards for performance? Sanctions for non-performance? Sildenafil online Performance system analysis is key here: every performer works within a system that you should engineer to promote the desired behavior. Yes, even volunteers.

Best, Rob

NOTE: although not posted elsewhere on our site, we do provide in-depth strategic planning facilitation training. online canadian pharmacy store! buy dapoxetine uk . official drugstore, dapoxetine buy australia.  If you are responsible for facilitating a strategic planning meeting and feel a sound structure, process and tools for facilitating strategic planning meetings, please contact us.

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