5 time saving tips for facilitators

Welcome to #FacilitationFive! Here are five time-saving facilitation tips written by the Participation Cymru team to help facilitators of all experience levels get quick-tips.

These tips include new techniques, learning, planning and general usefulness for all facilitators to enjoy.

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1. Focus on the process

It’s your job as facilitator to stay process-orientated. Don’t get bogged-down considering all the potential outcomes. You have a goal – for people to reach consensus and you’ll have decided upon which method you will use to reach consensus. Stick to your method.

Alain Thomas facilitating a Participation Cymru workshop

The process is more important than the outcome. Stay on track by focussing on the process

2. Use ‘printables’

Print a set of stickers with your common flipchart page headings or diagrams to save yourself writing them up every time. This is also useful if your handwriting isn’t the best!

Handwriting on a flipchart

Handwriting on a flipchart is not easy at the best of times

3. Have 5 techniques at the front of your mind

Quickly name 5 participatory methods from the top of your head… Can you do it? Having a handful of techniques to hand which you can explain succinctly without having to prepare anything elaborate is a sign of an experienced facilitator.

Post-its on a flipchart

When in doubt, use post-its!

4. Keep all your office files synced in once place

Forget the days of printing out your session plans, only to realise you’ve left it on the printer before you left. Forget memory sticks that won’t actually work in the venue’s dusty old computer. If you save all of your facilitation resources using a cloud-based service, and have it sync to your phone/tablet then you’ll always be able to access it – providing it’s synced/downloaded before you’ve left or you have a reliable internet connection.

Getting our files ready before a facilitated session

Getting prepared before a session

5. Keep it simple

“Keep it simple” should be a rule for everything. The best way to save time as a busy public engagement practitioner is to keep your methods simple, clear and concise. Don’t over-complicate things unless it’s absolutely necessary.

Keep it simple

What are your favourite time-saving tips? Let us know by leaving a comment to join the conversation!

Don’t forget to subscribe to Participation Cymru for more Facilitation tips! We have loads of other facilitation resources to share with you – don’t miss out!

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