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The Value of Good Facilitation

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by Kris Parker, Community Development Regional Educator, Purdue Extension 

 

Do you help lead groups to accomplish complex tasks and make participatory decisions? Whether you are leading a visioning process, supporting a community group or coalition to achieve its goals, helping a board or committee decide on a course of action, or encouraging a shared leadership approach among a staff team, facilitation is the art and science of helping groups to do their best work.

The Facilitative Leadership workshop is an intensive, hands-on opportunity to hone facilitation skills in a supportive learning environment. And, it’s fun! Participants try out new tools and skills as they design and lead a group through a process to achieve results.

Since 2016, Purdue Extension has partnered with Michigan State University Extension and the University of Illinois Extension to teach Facilitative Leadership to more than 200 facilitators from education, nonprofits, government, and the private sector.

The next open Facilitative Leadership workshop is September 28-30 in Nashville, Indiana. In addition, the Indiana Philanthropy Alliance will co-host its second Facilitative Leadership workshop with Purdue Extension in December 2021, specifically for philanthropic foundations’ staff.

The Facilitative Leadership workshop has received rave reviews over the years from participants describing how practical and applicable the workshop has been to their work, community or volunteer activities. In 2020, 100% of participants responding to an anonymous follow-up survey agreed that the workshop was valuable to their professional growth and development.

Since attending the workshop, 92% of participants reported facilitating a meeting; 88% facilitated a group discussion or dialogue; 83% facilitated a decision-making process; and, 46% facilitated the creation of a plan or policy.

One person described the workshop, “The variety of tools I learned through the training have been very useful in helping groups to form long term goals, short term goals, and working through difficult situations. Meeting time has become more efficient and productive. I feel more confident leading a group of people and others have complimented meeting productivity since I completed the training.”

For more information about the workshop, visit https://cdext.purdue.edu/signature-programs/leadership-civic-engagement/facilitative-leadership/ or contact Kris Parker at parkerkj@purdue.edu or 219-386-5232.

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