A big part of the success of any virtual workshop is about what happens before anyone even enters the room. A Wild Thinking facilitator will take responsibility for ensuring that when people turn up they are clear on why they are there, they understand the purpose of the session and they have all the information they need. They will make sure that the materials in the room are right for the group. This all takes time, focus and experience.
2. The Right Agenda and Process
A Wild Thinking facilitator is there to make it easier for a group to have a great session. Designing an agenda that engages people is key to this but the facilitator will also bring a wealth of experience in how to structure sessions to make sure that everything flows and that outcomes are achieved.
Many organisations have good internal facilitators but will they really be able to be truly independent of the workshop topic or the people involved? The beauty of a Wild Thinking facilitator is that they are there purely in support of the group, with no axe to grind and no bias.
Rooky Facilitator trap #1 is a very easy one to fall in to – thinking that active conversation from a small number of participants means good levels of participation from the group. Often, the opposite is true. A few voices hog all of the airtime, leaving others feeling uncomfortable and disengaged. An experienced Wild Thinking facilitator will manage these dynamics and make sure to create an environment where everyone has a chance to contribute
Nothing leaves a sour taste in the mouth after a busy virtual workshop like a lack of clarity on what was agreed and what should happen next. A Wild Thinking facilitator will always have an eye fixed on the follow up – recording decisions and structuring follow up actions so that the group is clear and accountable on who is going to do what and why. They will then capture everything in a clear write up that is circulated promptly after the session.