Presentation on theme: "for PRODUCTIVE MEETING TOOLS"— Presentation transcript:
1 for PRODUCTIVE MEETING TOOLS Tips & Techniquesfor PRODUCTIVE MEETING TOOLS“If facilitated effectively, groups can often make better decisions in meetings than any one person working on their own. ”To move forward, backward or to a Contents page, move your cursor over the arrows in the bottom left corner of each page and make a selection. You can also use your space bar (forward); or your Page Up/Page Dn keys (backward/forward).
2 Table of Contents Orientation Introducing the Tools Using the Tools Click on a large colored bullet to go to that section.
3 OrientationThis material was developed to provide you with invaluable tools for your future team meetings. By learning to work with these tools, you will enable your groups to increase productivity, work collaboratively, and experience less frustration.Different Tools for Different PurposesThree Main PurposesReturn to main Table of ContentsClick on a large colored bullet to go to that section.
4 Different Tools for Different Purposes Use questions Listen actively Have you used facilitation tools in your meetings to help organize or evaluate information? What tools have you used?Different tools are used for different purposes. In this course, we will look at nine different tools – what you can use them for; under what circumstances; how to use them; and, in some situations, how to modify them for different purposes. We selected these nine tools as they cover a range of purposes and are relatively easy to use.Familiarize yourself with these tools and experiment with them. Practice is the only way to achieve a high level of comfort.Use questionsListen activelyRespond appropriatelyOrientation
5 Three Main PurposesAs the meeting leader, you will use tools for three main purposes:to gather informationto organize informationto evaluate the information and select the best optionOrientation
6 Introducing the ToolsIn this section, you will be introduced to nine facilitation tools, what they are used for and what each tool will do.The Tools & Common UsesWhat Each Tool will DoReturn to main Table of ContentsClick on a large colored bullet to go to that section.
7 The Tools & Common UsesLet’s look at the chart below. You will find nine tools and their most common uses. You will also see that some of these tools can be used for more than one purpose.The ToolUsed for…Brainstorming &Variationsgenerating ideasencouraging participationencouraging creativity2. Weighed Votingestablishing priorities among the group3. Decision Matrixevaluating possible solutions against predetermined criteria4. Impact/Effort Gridgaining clarity about where to direct energy and resourcesIntroducing the Tools
8 The ToolUsed for…5. Ranking Matrixclarifying areas of agreement and disagreement6. Force Field Analysiscategorizing ‘helping’ and ‘hindering’ forces in relation to a goal7. Opening the Fieldopening up a broad discussion on major issues8. Designing the Futurehelping develop a vision for a desired future statesetting goalsdeveloping action plans9. Structured ProblemSolvingexploring and analyzing large scale problemsYou will often need more than one tool to reach your objective. You may choose one tool to generate information, another to organize it and yet another to evaluate and choose a coarse of action. So let’s now look at what the tools do.Introducing the Tools
9 What Each Tool will Do The Tool By understanding what each tool will do (capabilities & limitations), you can easily decide which tool will best help you achieve your goal.The ToolGatherOrganizeEvaluate & Select1. Brainstorming & VariationsX2. Weighted Voting3. Decision Matrix4. Impact/Effort Grid5. Ranking Matrix6. Force Field Analysis7. Opening the Field8. Designing the Future9. Structured Problem SolvingIntroducing the Tools
10 Using the ToolsIn this section, you will explore the nine facilitation tools in more detail. You will look at the advantages and disadvantages of each tool; and you will learn how to use each tool in your meetings.Ranking MatrixBrainstormingForce Field AnalysisWeighted VotingOpening the FieldDecision MatrixDesigning the FutureStructured Problem SolvingImpact/Effort GridReturn to main Table of ContentsClick on a large colored bullet to go to that section.
11 Brainstorming What it is Advantages Disadvantages It is a structured activity that helps groups quickly generate creative ideas about a topic, issue, situation, problem or opportunity. The group is encouraged to focus on quantity of ideas rather than quality.helps kick-start discussionencourages innovative thinkingencourages participation by allcan be fun and energizingcan be a disorganized free-for-allis overusedresults in counterproductive activity if rules not followedIrritates/demotivates a tired groupNow that you know more about brainstorming, let’s look at how to use it.Using the Tools
12 How to use Brainstorming: Step #1Announce a brainstorming session and focus the group on the topic.Step #2Write a clear goal on a flipchart.Step #3Explain the “rules of brainstorming”. Write them on a flipchart or give as a handout.Rules for Brainstormingwelcome all ideas, no matter how wilddo not evaluate ideas at this timebuild on the ideas of others if you wishaim for quantity not qualityUsing the Tools
13 Step #4 Record the ideas on a flipchart as they are offered Step #4 Record the ideas on a flipchart as they are offered. Don’t discuss or elaborate. If the group is large, use two flipcharts and two recorders. Tolerate periods of silence while people are thinking. Step #5 When ideas have dried up, discuss each idea so that it is fully understood. Combine ideas that are identical. Step #6 Use voting or prioritizing tool to decide which ideas to develop or act upon.Using the Tools
14 Weighted Voting What it is Advantages Disadvantages It is a decision-making tool that enables a group to sort through a list of ideas to identify priorities.Use this tool when a group wants to explore a list of items or options to determine the level of support and to identify which ones should be dealt with or built upon immediately.establishes a clear set of prioritiesis democratic and participativeallows individuals to quickly identify what the group most values and what is most importantgives members a brief time to think before votingcan be fun and energizingwhen the group is very large, can take a significant amount of timewhen individuals are not clear and in agreement about the criteria for the decision which guides the vote, people may vote at cross purposes to one anotherNow let’s look at how to use weighted voting.Using the Tools
15 How to use Weighted Voting: Step #1Make sure individuals are clear about how each option would meet the goal and identify the criteria that will guide the decision. For example, the decision could be made according to the greatest cost saving or the easiest items to complete.Step #2Give each person a specific number of colored peel-off dots. Use slightly fewer dots than half the items/options to be decided.Alternatively, you may give each person a specific number of points to distribute among the items/options. Usually, you give each person a number of points equal to twice the amount of items/options.Step #3Ask meeting members to distribute their dots or points for their top choices.Using the Tools
16 Decide if you will impose any voting guidelines on the group Decide if you will impose any voting guidelines on the group. For example, you may let individuals use more than one dot per choice or use no more than half their votes on any one item. Step #4 When everyone is finished voting, count the dots/points to determine the group’s priorities.Using the Tools
17 Decision Matrix What it is Advantages Disadvantages It helps groups evaluate multiple possible solutions against a predetermined set of criteria. It can help the group narrow down a wide range of choices.speeds up decision makingreduces impact of preconceived ideas or entrenched positionscan cause dissension if all members are not involved in establishing the criteriacan cause the group to focus too rigidly on hard criteria and ignore gut feelings or intuitionNow that you know more about the decision matrix, let’s look at how to use it.Using the Tools
18 How to use a Decision Matrix: Step #1Use brainstorming to develop the list of criteria. Then help the group divide the criteria into two categories: “Must Have” and “Nice-to-Have”.Step #2Make sure that the group agrees that any choice which does not meet the “Must Have” criteria will be eliminated.Step #3 (Optional)Ask the group to rank or weigh the “Nice-to-Have” criteria. This step can be helpful later if the group has to choose between two quite similar options.Step #4Draw a line down the middle of a flipchart. List the “Must Have” and the “Nice-to-Have” criteria down the left hand side; list the choices across the top.Using the Tools
19 Step #5 Ask the group to rate each alternative against the “Must Have” criteria first. This step may be sufficient to reach a decision. Step #6 If two or more choices survive the “Must Have” criteria, move on and help the group rate the choices against the “Nice-to-Have” criteria. If a decision can still not be made, help the group decide what information they might need to reach a decision. Be sure that the group has a definite action plan for obtaining additional information.Using the Tools
21 Impact/Effort Grid What it is Advantages Disadvantages It is an easy-to-use tool for helping groups reach clarity about action plans. It is especially useful when a group has to choose among a large number of possible actions; or when individual group members simply cannot agree on what to do first.is quick and easy to userequires little preparationcan be customized easilyproblematic if some group members become bogged down in defining or quantifying subjective terms such as “minor improvement” or “difficult”Now, let’s look at how to use an impact/effort grid.Using the Tools
22 How to use an Impact/Effort Grid: Step #1Draw the grid on a flipchart.Step #2Post all the action ideas on a separate flipchart.Step #3Discuss each action idea one by one and ask the group to place it in the appropriate box. All possible actions then become categorized as:The group can then more easily decide to discard some ideas and focus time, energy and resources where they will produce best results.Easy to do and will yield major improvement.Easy to do but will yield only minor improvement.Difficult to do but will yield major improvement.Difficult to do and will yield only minor improvement.Using the Tools
24 Ranking Matrix What it is Advantages Disadvantages It is a simple matrix that helps a group determine how close they are to, or how far they are from, reaching agreement. Use this tool when team members are required to rank several variables in order of importance, preference or priority.presents the status of the decision-making process visuallyhelps group stay positive by focusing on areas of agreement or near agreementfrees the group up to have a healthy debate on areas of disagreementnoneNow, let’s look at how to use a ranking matrix.Using the Tools
25 How to use a Ranking Matrix: Step #1Draw the grid on a flipchart with issues down the left hand side and team members names across the top.Step #2Ask team members to give you their ranking or, if the group needs energy, invite members to come up to the flipchart and list their own ranking.Step #3Use a colored marker to identify areas near agreement.Step #4Ask people who are almost in agreement with their colleagues if they can buy into the most popular decision. Continue to facilitate discussion.Using the Tools
27 Force Field Analysis What it is Advantages Disadvantages It helps groups who are working towards a specific goal. It is a way of categorizing those forces* that are helpful and enabling and those that are opposing or obstructing. *Defined as: resources, skills, attitudes, external factors (e.g. economy, market)easy and quick to usecan be used with small or large groupputs obstacles in perspectivein low morale situations, groups may become overly focused on the hindering forcesNow that you know more about a force field analysis, let’s look at how to use it.Using the Tools
28 How to use a Force Field Analysis: Step #1Help the group state its goals clearly.Step #2Draw a line down the middle of a flipchart or use two flipcharts. Label one side “Helping Forces (+)” and the other “Hindering Forces (-)”.Step #3Use brainstorming to generate a list of the helping forces; then, repeat to generate a list of hindering forces. Alternatively, you can assign this step as pre-work for the meeting so that people have time to think through the issues.Step #4Give the group an opportunity to ask questions about the items on the chart. Add any additional ideas that come up.Using the Tools
29 Step #5 Tell the group that there are three kinds of force: a) forces that the group cannot control (e.g. world economy, natural disasters); b) forces that the group cannot completely control, but can influence (budget, staffing levels); c) forces that the group can control (e.g. attitudes, internal procedures). Help them identify the “c” category, forces that the group can control, and decide which helping forces they should try to strengthen and which hindering forces they should try to weaken. Step #6 (Optional) You may choose to split the group into sub-groups to work on the “c” category items and to come up with action ideas/plans. Step #7 Help the group create action plans for all “c” items and any “b” items (forces that the group cannot completely control) they deem to be priorities. You may wish to use an Impact/Effort Grid to help the group decide where best to direct their energy.Using the Tools
31 Opening the Field What it is Advantages Disadvantages Also known as sequential questioning, it is a tool used to open up discussion and uncovers people’s assumptions, opinions and biases at the beginning of a meeting.To work well, the facilitator must carefully think through the issues and craft a series of macro-level lead questions that will challenge the group both intellectually and emotionally.generates early and vigorous discussiongets the issues out on the tablehighlights varying opinions among group memberscreates energy and healthy discussion with the status quocan become a rabble if not well facilitatedcan give rise to intra-group conflictNow, let’s look at how to use it.Using the Tools
32 How to use Opening the Field: Step #1Design 3-10 questions to stimulate macro-level discussion about the issue.Step #2Write each question at the top of a new piece of flipchart paper. Reveal each question one at a time, facilitate a discussion and record the responses. Allocate a specific time, say 10 minutes, to each question.As an option, you can kick off the discussion of each question with an “Agree/Disagree” poll. Then invite one member form each camp to speak in turn.Step #3Summarize the discussion after each question and again at the end of the overall discussion.Using the Tools
33 Example: Using the Tools At the beginning of a meeting to discuss an organization’s strategy for e-learning, a facilitator might craft the following statements to open the field:By 20xx, over 80% of all training will be delivered by methods other than classroom-based, instructor-led workshops.People can learn communication skills as effectively through web-based training as through classroom-based training.We know that 80% of people who take on-line training do not complete their programs. We should ignore that fact and do it anyway.Using the Tools
34 Designing the Future What it is Advantages Disadvantages It is a powerful tool for helping a group set goals. Centered on one key question: “If we were to meet again in two years from now [select your own time frame], what would have to have happened for us to feel successful?”helps members clarify their thinkingchallenges the status quocreates energyencourages creative thinkingno real disadvantages, however, it may not work if your team is highly dysfunctional, is experiencing low morale or is not committed to a future visionNow that you know more about designing the future, let’s look at how to use it.Using the Tools
35 How to use Designing the Future: Step #1Post the main question on a flipchart or provide a handout.(When you ask the main question, you may wish to prompt the group to think about specific aspects of your business such as market share, revenue, profitability, risk management or new products. In essence, you are prompting people to look out to the future and to paint a detailed picture of what it will look like.)Step #2Give each person 5-10 minutes to jot down his or her ideas. Ask the group to stay silent. (Alternatively, you could assign this task as pre-work or homework.)Step #3Ask people to find a partner. Give them five minutes to share their vision with their partners.Using the Tools
36 Step #4 Ask people to find a different partner and repeat the process outlined in Step #3. Encourage people to borrow any new ideas they pick up along the way to add to their own vision. Step #5 Bring the group back together and facilitate a discussion to identify any overall themes that emerged during the partner-sharing exercise. Step #6 After a general sharing, take each item one at a time and ask individuals to read out their vision for that item. Record the responses; then cluster or rank them.Using the Tools
37 Structured Problem Solving What it isAdvantagesDisadvantagesIt is a disciplined approach that groups can use to dissect and solve problems.stops the group from jumping to premature solutionsholds people accountable for action commitmentsinvaluable for constantly improving processesrequires a strong facilitator with well-honed skillscan lead to conflict if group is tired or demoralizedNow, let’s look at how to use structured problem solving.Using the Tools
38 How to use Structured Problem Solving: Step #1Help the group state and define the problem clearly. Do not proceed unless the group agrees completely on the problem statement.Step #2State the desired outcome or goal (i.e. What would things look like if the problem were solved?)Step #3List the consequences of the problem and the impact if the problem continues.Step #4List the causes of the problem.Using the Tools
39 Step #5 Use Brainstorming to identify potential solutions Step #5 Use Brainstorming to identify potential solutions. To sharpen the group’s thinking, you may want to use constructs such as: “If this were your company...”; “If you were going to invest your own money...”; If money were no object...”. Step #6 Use an Impact/Effort Grid to evaluate potential solutions. Step #7 Develop an Action Grid showing who will do what by when.Using the Tools
40 ExerciseNow, it’s your turn. Go back to the nine facilitation tools and decide which tools will help you reach the objective in your next meeting. You may choose one tool to generate information, another to organize it and yet another to evaluate and choose a coarse of action.Familiarize yourself with these tools and experiment with them. Practice is key to achieving a high level of comfort.Using the Tools
41 Improving the way you plan and prepare for a productive meeting. By applying the tips and techniques you have learned in this course, you will be well on your way to:Enabling your groups to increase productivity, work collaboratively, and experience less frustration.Improving the way you plan and prepare for a productive meeting.“If facilitated effectively, groups can often make better decisions in meetings than any one person working on their own. ”