Friday, February 08, 2013

When Numbers Soar: Facilitating Large Groups

I was delighted to be invited by MAFN - the Mid-Atlantic Facilitators Network tonight to present a webinar on facilitating large groups which is one of my favorite facilitation topics. (and yes, it can be done, if you were asking!)

It has been one of my missions over the years to bring more facilitation and interactivity into large conference and workshop settings, whether there are hundreds of participants or thousands. And to challenge traditional conference design assumptions about long panels and short Q&As (where only a few people get to talk, if any). All with the goal of avoiding this...

It was a wonderful group of facilitators who joined the webinar conversation tonight and added to and elaborated further, from their own experience, the tips and tricks for working with very large groups that I presented. I promised to pull together and link a few favourite blog posts that I've written over the years, many of which I used as the basis for my presentation.

I organised my talk into four areas:

1. Design Opportunities

2. Preparing Yourself (including your Facilitators Toolkit)

3. Leading Facilitation Teams

4. Once on Stage 

I was happy to present my own learning and definitely took away a lot of great new ideas from the webinar! If you'd like to watch the webinar recording, MAFN has kindly provided the Adobe Connect link:

MAFN Webinar When Numbers Soar: Facilitating Large Groups

Thanks so much to my fellow Facilitators Michael Randel, to Dana Roberts and Fran Lowe for their help and great hosting!  And a little blurb for MAFN - anyone can join the Mid-Atlantic Facilitator's Network, even if you are far from them geographically. They offer very interesting virtual learning opportunities through their webinar series, as well as a vibrant community of facilitators all happy to share their experiences!


Michael Randel said...

Thanks for your contribution today, Gillian - it was great, very helpful and lots of practical tips for facilitators, no matter the size of the group with which you are working!

Gillian Martin Mehers said...

I really enjoyed it Michael, and thanks again for the opportunity to join MAFN members to discuss such an interesting topic!