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Celebrating Black Female Facilitators

In the U.S., February is African American history month. It began as a celebration of contributions by African Americans at a time when those contributions were not remotely recognized.  This month is meant to be a tribute to the generations of African Americans who struggled with adversity and oppression in achieving full citizenship in American…

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The Importance of Pauses in Process Work

I rarely pause in my life. My family would attest to this fact. Yet life goes better with pauses. I have learned this the hard way.  In process facilitation, pauses are an incredibly important part of the entire agenda. If you don’t pause at the right moments, you miss the opportunity for such things as…

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Sharpening the Focus on Your Meeting Outcomes

The new year seems like a good time to talk about setting goals. However, I’d actually like to talk to you about setting the objectives or aims of all of your different meetings and discussions. In ToP language, we call this the rational and experiential aims. Knowing how to craft very focused aims has been…

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Facilitator Math – When You Need to Use Numbers to Get Better Results

Most facilitators are not really into math, but you may need to be. I keep discovering how important it is to watch numbers and patterns (the underlying structure of math) when you are conducting a facilitated session.  Here are two quick tips to get really good results.   One is something all facilitators seem to get…

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The 9 (Inner) Disciplines of the Facilitator

Last week, at an IAF sponsored workshop, my colleagues Jackie Chang from Taiwan, Kevin Xu from China and myself co-designed and delivered our workshop on the “Being of the Facilitator” in Guangzhou, China. One of the resources that we thought would be helpful was called “The Nine Disciplines of a Facilitator” by Jon and Maureen…

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Brilliant Facilitation Tools for Reflective Thinking & Problem Solving

I took my first ToP class in December 1995. Over the last 24 years, it has revolutionized my life, my closest relationships, my facilitation practice and my business. I am deeply grateful to the pioneers of ToP for having systematized processes that I use on a daily basis as reflective thinking and problem-solving tools, and…

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Clear Flowing Agendas – Designing Using Meta Methods

What is a meta method? It is a framework that can be used over and over in many different circumstances.  It is the foundation behind all other tools and techniques. It works marvelously in most situations that require clear thinking.  Are you designing with meta methods?  I will talk about two in this blog and…

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Art of Maintaining a Clear & Focused Facilitator Mind

I just came off a silent meditation retreat. I do these every year to clear my mind. It also helps me set new intentions and practices. I know that as facilitator I need to come to the group with a clear and sharply focused mind. There are many ways to develop a mind free from…

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Sustaining Enthusiasm, Energy & Excitement in Facilitation

I’ve been thinking about long term relationships for the last little while. I realize that I’m quite a loyal person and I have many long term friendships, partnerships with colleagues and maintain deep connections to my original family. I know also that the world is changing so quickly and that it is both tempting and…

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Increasing the Meta Impact of Your Energizers

At the IAF Asia conference last week, Grace Tan from Singapore and I co-facilitated a session on meaningful energizers. We were trying to urge facilitators to choose their energizers and ice breakers wisely, not just because it was a favorite thing to do. We recommend you do not use energizers as a “filler” or simply…

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