Facilitation Tracks

Here is a selection of tracks for a variety of facilitation projects, which you may use to plan your facilitation sessions - and save time!

Each can be adapted according to your particular group, objectives and timescale.

Click on the links to jump to the track(s):-


Track 1 | Business Continuity Planning 1

Objective: To develop plans to minimise the effect on the business caused by a global crisis, e.g. "Bird 'flu" pandemic First check the Group's understanding of the issue, e.g.:-

2. Trailer

Do nothing - let nature take its course?
< - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - >
Close down everything until a cure is found?

3. Card Call

What are the events related to ‘flu that could adversely affect the business?

(Caution. Here you need to define risks, not consequences, e.g. "All staff and customers will die" is the risk, "Business will go bust" is the consequence) 4. Prioritise Work through each risk with a template:

What should we do to eliminate this risk, if possible?
What should we do to minimise the impact of this risk?

5. Card Call:#2

What can we each do as a routine to reduce the spread of infection within the premises?

6. Summarise key actions with responsibilities: Include liaison with external agencies and services where appropriate. 7. Document and publish.

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Track 2 | Conflict Resolution

Scenario: To assist two teams to work more effectively together, for instance:-

Issue: The opinions of the 2 groups differ significantly:-

Objective: To identify existing issues between our two teams and make plans to improve our working together.

Step 1 : Entry Board (Whole Group)

Name Location What I really want from this session is:-

Step 2: Trailer : (Whole Group) "How well do we work as a team?" Scale: "Peaches and Cream" through to "Kippers and Custard"

Step 3 : Divide into 2 groups. Mix up both teams and both Groups working the same track. Work in tables of 6.

Card call question 1 "What are the key signals that two teams like ours are pulling together to achieve corporation goals?" Process. Each person writes cards; each table hands in top 5 cards from the table:-

Matrix

Key signals
0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
                       

Identify top 6 issues Guide Sub-Groups to fix (Dumb Waiter):-

Step 4 : Individual Action Plans

Name To make things better, I will . . . with . . . when starting . . .

Step 5 : Break. Management team to choose 6-10 issues that could be the topic for Continuous Improvement Teams (issues they are prepared to invest in) Step 6 : Reconvene into one Group Step 7 : Continuous Improvement Action Plan Managers can choose/offer lead role to selected people before team works through. Key issues to manage:-

By (leader) with (team) Who else to invite 1st planning meeting

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Track 3 | Planning

Trailer

What will happen, if we do not solve this issue?

Open Card Call, to identify causes.

What are the likely causes of this issue?

Prioritise

What solutions are open to us?

Counter arguments

What will or might prevent this solution from happening?

Recommendations (work on the most realistic actions . . . . few is better than too many!)

How do we measure success?

Action Plan

Topic
Specific steps
By whom?
By when?

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Track 4 | Project Review

Scenario Reviewing a Project has a number of important benefits, not the least of which are:-

The structure (like all Pinpoint Facilitation sessions) is flexible, according to your needs and circumstances:-

Entry Board

Name
Function in project
What I want from today is:-

Trailer

How did the project go?
Brilliant
< - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - >
Disaster

Card Call : Double

What went really well? (green)
What should have gone better? (red)

Call Card actions:-

Dumb Waiter could be:-

Causes Solutions
Counter arguments Actions

or some other problem-solving process . . . .

Use time limitations here

Develop the recommendations board/action plan. Remember, as always, that the Action Plan must be actions to take by the assembled people. If another person/Department has to do something, the action needs to be presented and maybe sold. It must not be assumed that other person/Department will do it, just because the group says so.

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Track 5 | Rebuilding the recovery (1)

Scenario These tracks are written as a planning document i.e. backwards. This way you should be able to personalise more easily.

Track 1 Objective: Identify what cash savings can we make?

Final Board (1)

Action
Saving
Who will manage?
Start? End?

Group Templates

 Money saving idea/ total saving/issues and barriers/recommendation.

Multiple, open card call: Think of all the activities that happen in your own department, where savings could be made

Office/admin
Production.
Communication (int/ext)
Buying
Sales

Trailer:

If you looked under a few stones, how much money could we all save?
Desert scene
< - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - >
Lush greenery

Entry board

Name
To what extent are you worried about recession?
Is it in or out of our control?

Track 2 Objective

To find out what hidden talents we have in our people. Final Board (2)

New Activity
Key person
Team?
1st Meeting

Group Templates

Trailer

Recession: there is nothing we can do except pull in our belts and hold out.
True
< - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - >
False

Entry Board (2)

Name
In a word, what does recession mean to you?
To help survive the recession. I recommend . . . .

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Track 6 | Rebuilding the recovery(2)

Track 3 - Tackling Team Morale

Objective: To give team members an opportunity to share their concerns about the coming year, identify what the organisation, team and individuals can do to support staff.

Output: An action summary identifying the top three activities for each group (organisation, team etc.)

Track: Trailer: (10 mins)

How do I feel today about the coming twelve months?
Joe Cool
< - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - >
Headless Chicken

Note: Visuals could be something other than "Joe Cool" and "Headless chicken" Visualisation: (20 mins): Using a Pinboard or flipchart, create two images:

 

Open Double Card Call: (30 mins): "What is taking us towards where we want to be?" (yellow cards) and "What is holding us back?" (orange) Cluster, summarise and prioritise to identify drivers (yellow) and blocks (orange) (i.e. strongest drivers, worst blocks) Sub Groups: (20 mins):

Recommendations should include one key activity for organisation, team AND individual. Gallery & Action Summary: (20 mins): Record recommended activities for organisation, team & individuals. Review (5 mins) Timing: 1¾ hours Track 4 - Maintaining Customer Focus Objective: To identify key concerns for customers and or clients during the coming year and identify specifically how our organisation can help. Output: An action summary to inform strategy and/or to share with Clients and/or Customers Track:

Timing: 2½ hours

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Track 7 | Sales development (1)

Entry Board

Name
As a customer, my worst experience with sales people was:-
In a phrase or word, what is "Selling"?

Trailer

If the price is right and you have the right back-up, selling is easy
Agree < - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - > Disagree

Closed Card Call

What are the negative images people have of sales?

Really get the Group to think about all the nasty stuff - pushy, smarmy, won't take "No" for an answer, etc.

Open Card Call

When you are the customer, what is it about some sales people that encourages you to buy?

You will now get all of the positive things that are required in any sales person - they listen, they give me time, they have adequate product knowledge, they are nice to deal with, friendly and look genuine. When you have clustered all of these, put the results into a list and prioritise.

Now you have got the Group to write their own agenda. The order might not be quite what you want; often with, say, Engineers, product knowledge comes out No.1 but, for sure, all the soft attitude and "making people feel good" will come out loud and clear.

For roleplay, you can work on critique using both lists. Looking at the good aspects and being clear about when positive attitude and hard closing become offensive and counterproductive. You can now deliver your training in your preferred way - using Pinboards and accelerated techniques, or through manuals and OHPs. When you are done, you have 2 options and you can do one, either or both:-

 Open card call

Now we have learned and studied the sales process, what might prevent me from actually doing it?

You will probably get things like:-

Use header cards and prioritise. Groups problem-solve.

Use Dumb Waiter:-

Causes

Solutions

Counter arguments

Actions

When applying Accelerated Learning techniques, use Key Memory Trigger(s). Spend at least two hours getting the group to make a picture of the whole course.

Remember that, to do this, they will be using all the learning/working intelligences. They will need at least three boards to work across.

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Track 8 | Sales development (2)

Trailer

We succeed in reaching 100% of our sales potential
Every time < - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - > Very rarely

Open Card Call

What are the issues which prevent us from closing on every occasion where a sale should happen?

Prioritise

 Choose sub-Groups and go for the following Dumb Waiter:-

Causes?

Solutions?

Counter arguments?

Actions?

Action Plan

Topic
Specific steps
By whom?
With whom?
By when?

Remember that actions can only be carried out by people in the Group. If, say, Marketing needs to do something, the Group's action is to present the meeting's findings to Marketing and persuade them to do it. 

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Track 9 | Standards of excellence

Opportunity to explore the new and exciting techniques for accelerating learning, using all learning/working intelligences.

Trailer:

 Training in the UK is . . . .

 
Best thing since sliced bread?
< - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - >
Rotten to the core?

Multiple Open Card Call "On what criteria should training be judged?"

 
By Delegate?
By the Tutor?
By the Sponsor?

Collect cards. Remember to:-

 

Ask for anything missing or cards left over that significantly add to the ideas already posted. Put header cards on one board and vote.

Go to the next board, place headers and vote and finally do the same for the last board. Transfer the key three or four from each of these boards on to a matrix:-

 
Criterion
Comments
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Comments

Get the group to identify the key relative weaknesses and work in sub groups to fix them. The Dumb waiter can be:-

 
Causes
 
Solutions
 
Counter arguments
 
Actions

. . . . or any other series you feel right. For example, if you are "Training the Trainer" then this is the time to input about the new and exciting techniques for accelerating learning and really using all learning/working intelligences. Hold an "Ideas Gallery" and get the group to finalise the Action Plan.

 
Topic
 
Specific steps
 
By whom?
 
With whom?
 
By when?

It is critical to ensure that all actions can be carried out by the individuals in the Group. If a higher or different authority is needed to see the action through, then the only acceptable action is for one or more from the Group to present the ideas to the relevant person.

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Track 10 | SWOT Analysis

After thorough explanation of what Strengths & Weaknesses, Opportunities & Threats exist in a business or situation.

Ask Open questions to define:-

Positives
Negatives

Strengths?

 

 

Weaknesses?

Opportunities?

 

 

Threats?

 

 

 

For variety, you could make the second a Closed Card Call. Now prioritise all lists and form 2 matrices:-

  1. Opportunities on the X axis and Strengths on the Y axis
  2. Threats on the other X axis and Weaknesses on the Y

Open Question

Which of these Strengths can help us match the Opportunities?

As an open shout, place a dot in the square where there is a match voiced by a the Group. Any dissenters can have their 30 seconds, but generally one dispute in a series of squares should not cause any real problem. Because the topics are in priority order, a series of gaps in the top left hand corner of each matrix should give cause for concern and some sort of shift in attitude or performance will be required. If all the squares are full in this area, all is well. Generally, the idea of using Pinboards will both speed up the process and allow better movement of those ideas where there is a question about which group they fall into. Often, Strengths can be seen as Opportunities and vice versa.

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Track 11 | Training Needs Analysis

Open Card Call

What changes to you envisage in the next three years that will impact on our staff and their skills?

Prioritise

What are the areas that we (HR/Training) must get right?

To selected groups, Department by Department (or a group selected from the whole company, if working with a small organisation):-  

Closed Card Calls

What are the tasks that you perform now really well?

 

What are the areas where you would like or you need more training support?

 

What do you feel are the main development areas for:-
Your future?
The Company's future?

Prioritise using a Double Vote.

What will be best for you?
What will be best for the organisation?

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Track 12 | Living our Values

Jane Hunt, of JCH Consulting, has kindly sent in her Pinpoint Facilitation presentation.

This outlines her views about the Pinpoint Facilitation process and its application in getting teams to focus on their personal and professional values. "Having worked as a Senior Consultant in an International Training company for 16 years, I am an avid fan of the flexible, yet structured approach of the Pinpoint process.

The process quickly speeds a group of people towards their desired objectives whilst the tools enable everyone to be involved and engaged in the journey towards their agreed actions and ultimate results. Often interspersed with some learning inputs, the process allows people to immediately apply to their world the models or themes introduced intellectually.

As a facilitator, I believe passionately that people know what needs to be done. They just need a catalyst to create cohesion by teasing out the issues and focusing them on the desired results. Pinpoint provides the tactile and logical mechanism to focus the emotional energy generated through effective facilitation". The tracks in the presentation are offered as "skeletons" which can be adapted to suit particular team objectives:-

You may download Jane's presentation for reference, but we would ask you to respect her Copyright. Our thanks to her professionalism and interest.
Keith W-P

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Track 13 | Visioning

Sean Quiggin, of Public Services Research, has kindly sent in this exercise for Pinpoint Facilitation users. "This is a useful track for a visioning exercise which was successfully played out 4 times, in front of up to 140 people, grouped into sets of 10.

I coordinated alone, but had help with card collection. Big audiences do need a sound kit and a hands-free mike. The Group voting took a little organisation, but worked well and gave satisfactory results. The Visioning exercise was a good way of broaching a contentious subject with a sceptical audience - the slightly OTT scenario allows for humour to deal with initial scepticism and encourages buy-in to the exercise".

Our thanks to Sean for his professionalism and interest.
Keith W-P

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November Tracks

1. First meeting with a CEO

Take in a table-top pinboard and set it up. (Interest?)

Introductory chat and then:

“Tell me . . . what, in your view is going well with your company’s progress?”.  Jot a few key remarks on cards.

Then ask: “OK. What is not going so well – what would you like to improve?”. This time, get him/her to write down their thoughts – keep silent.

Collect, cluster and then prioritise.

Armed with the information about what is going well and not so well, you are on your way.

Remember the benefits of getting him/her to write, rather than just discussing. It's intra-personal, inter-personal, kinaesthetic, logical, visual/spatial and of course linguistic. Six of Gardner’s eight intelligences demonstrated and used in the first meeting.

Your follow-up proposal will now include photos of your discussion. That’s engagement!


2. Continuous Improvement

Trailer:  All the processes and output from our organisation are of seamless quality, satisfying customer need, making money and providing excellent job satisfaction:-

False?
< - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - >
True?

Closed Card Call:

What, specifically, do we do really well?

Cluster and headers. (Vote if you like, but probably not necessary)

Open, multiple Card Call: What are the areas where we might be able to improve?

           

What are the areas where we might be able to improve?
Customer interface?
Internal communication?
Wasted effort, money


Cluster and prioritise each sector.

Options:

Everybody should have the chance to go to at least three sessions in the day.

At the end of the day, share information and thoughts and get volunteers to sign up to each team. Publish all photos.

(I did this with a financial organisation, with a group of 70 people. Worked like a dream. If you like the sound of this, give me a call and I’ll fill in the details.)


3. Strategy

Trailer: “On the road to excellence, we can always do better – regardless of how good we are now.”  How do you feel about this statement?

It's just management speak
< - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - >
It’s the only way to go

Introduce the power of whole brain working in the same way as we do in our courses. Flip chart v. picture – each is good; both are better.

The task should be about, “How would you like to see our company in 5 years time?”; “What would you like to feel as you go in to work?”; “What would you like to feel on the way home?”

Open card call:

On what criteria would you judge our company as being really successful?”

Customer view
Shareholder view
Staff view
CEO view

Cluster and prioritise.

Transfer key criteria to a 1-10 scale matrix.

“To what extent do we meet these criteria today?”
1 < - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - > 10

 

You are now on the way to create templates on various topics, hold further detail meetings.

Depending on company size, work with a selection of staff, board to shop-floor. Don’t make it secret; ask for input from all.

When you get near finalising the strategy, think about how to present it  - ideally all in one room style – and ensure ALL personnel have a chance to add thoughts and then Pinpoint:

 “What can I do to enable and implement this strategy?”

Publish photos to all.


Any other examples?

If you have any examples of tracks you have designed and would like to share them with fellow Pinpointers, please ring Keith W-P on 01235 512400.