Five Reasons Leaders and Managers Should Hire an Independent Facilitator

by Paul Cummings

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Five Reasons Why Leaders and Managers Should Hire An Independent Facilitator

It's my view the time has come when leaders and managers simply can't afford NOT to have excellent, focused and effective meetings and events.  Here are my five reasons why leaders and managers should hire an independent facilitator for meetings that really matter.

Everywhere we look, experts surround us. Regardless of our goal, need, issue or concern, you'll find an expert who can help you - social media expert, financial expert, HR expert, PR expert - our expertise knows no bounds!

My particular brand of expertise is meeting facilitation where I design the right process to help groups and organisations achieve amazing results. It's not a field of expertise that gets much recognition - after all, anyone can run a meeting. Whilst that's true, most meetings don't achieve amazing results - quite often the opposite - underwhelming drudgery.

1) Time is Money

Next time you gather your people together, calculate the salary costs involved. You'll be surprised how much you're spending on meetings - what does that equate to monthly? How about annually?  Most leaders and managers are NOT meeting experts. You’re usually too busy to carefully plan highly effective meetings. The default is often a case of showing up and then asking the questions, 'Why are we here?’, 'What do we hope to achieve?'  Engage a facilitator in advance and these questions become the bedrock on which the meeting will be professionally designed and led.

2) Your Own Participation is Maximised 

When you take responsibility for running the meeting, it's hard to participate fully. Engage a professional facilitator, give them a brief and then let them design a meeting where you can participate fully, whilst the facilitator professionally orchestrates proceedings.  Having a facilitator allows you to bring your best self to the meeting.

3) Different Ways of Meeting will Produce Different Results

Meet in the same old way and you're bound to get the same old results. Many leaders and managers want better results from their meetings but struggle to find the time to revise their approach to conducting meetings. If you are struggling for time, hire an independent facilitator who will bring meeting expertise to deliver ways of conducting business that really achieve the results you need. 

4) Vested Interests can Derail your Meeting Outcomes

As an independent third party, your facilitator will have an eye to the various ways individuals may try to push their own preferred solutions or agendas.  People often approach meetings with the attitude “I want”.  A skilled facilitator will successfully guide groups towards effective decisions by helping participants make the transition from “I want” to “We need”. 

5) Disruptive People and Behaviours get Skillfully Challenged

People are both the greatest catalyst and obstacle for highly effective meetings that achieve amazing outcomes. Successfully managing people so they conduct themselves to serve the interest of the meeting takes skillful determination.  Any good facilitator will establish and maintain meeting guidelines that direct participants towards effective behaviours. Ineffective behaviours will be skillfully challenged and being an external and impartial presence with tactful techniques, makes the task of the facilitator easier when faced with such challenging and troublesome behaviours. 

If you are determined to change your meeting culture, get yourself an independent facilitator.

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