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How Do You Grow As a Facilitator?

My friends at High 5 Adventure Learning Center (USA) published an article last year that focused on how we fuel our growth as facilitators of groups.

Outside of direct experience, can you list two or three other drivers of your growth and expertise as a professional leader?

I have to admit, I had to think about it for a while.

My two most powerful sources of growth came to mind quickly – watching others lead groups and seeking mentorship from others. These happen to sit within the list of Tips & Tools to Become an Effective Facilitator developed by the staff at High 5.

But there are many other tips and strategies shared in the article that just make sense too, including:

Over Prepare Yet Remain Flexible

As a facilitator with 30+ years experience, I can make leadership look easy, but of course, everything I do sits on a solid foundation of experience and a very large repertoire of activity ideas I can pull out of my hat a moment’s notice.

Tell Great Stories

It’s a universal truth that some of the most useful knowledge and ideas are absorbed through stories. This is a skill that takes lots of practice and I’m so glad I was mentored by some of the best in the business to give me leg-up in this direction. Thanks, Karl, Mary, Paul, Anne and Jim.

Practice Silence

This is hard, really hard sometimes. Yet, some of the most powerful facilitators often say very little. High 5’s articles suggest that if you are talking more than 40% of the time, you may be stifling your group’s contribution. Even waiting an extra 2 to 5 seconds to invite a response to your questions can be really worth it.

Look at How You Use Humour

Humour is one of my top facilitator strengths, yet I have discovered (through trial and error) that it only works when applied in a manner that invites everyone to laugh and smile, and never at the expense of one or more of my group members. You can learn more about this element of my growth in this video tutorial.

What would you add to this list, that helps you grow as a facilitator?

You can read the full article by High 5 by clicking the button below.

Read High 5 Article

 

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