MSD competency C2

Facilitation

Facilitate goal-driven discussions, workshops and meetings

MSD Competency Framework

Competency definition

Practitioners lead group processes effectively, balancing agenda and pre-set goals with participant contributions and unexpected changes. They can redirect away from circular conversations and support a group to converge on optimal solutions.

Knowledge areas

Practitioners with this competency will be knowledgeable about concepts and ideas described and explored in these resources...

Skills and experience

Practitioners with this competency will have acquired qualifications, skills and practical experience that may include:

  • organising and facilitating structured meetings, workshops and training for internal and external stakeholders
  • running a strategic or work-planning process involving multiple types of meetings and follow-ups

Guidance for teaching this competency

Facilitated discussion
Provide a prompt for a situation where practitioners have to interact with a person whose behaviours are easy to judge negatively. For example predatory business behaviour or spending family money on drinking. Observe how much they are able to empathise, inquire and ask questions vs judging, jumping to conclusions and pushing.

Case studies
Provide a prompt for a situation where practitioners have to interact with a person whose behaviours are easy to judge negatively - for example predatory business behaviour or spending family money on drinking. Observe how much they are able to empathise, inquire and ask questions vs judging, jumping to conclusions and pushing.

Scenarios & role plays
In small to medium sized groups ask participants to discuss or make a decision on a challenge. One group member must act as the facilitator and lead the group in addressing the challenge. Get participants to debrief what tactics worked and what didn’t and switch roles until each person has been a facilitator.

Field practice
Ask practitioners to develop a plan or strategy for an upcoming meeting or workshop. Provide feedback and discuss potential pitfalls and contingency plans. Observe the practitioner facilitate. Provide specific, evidence-based feedback and debrief the experience.

Coaching & mentoring advice

  • Discuss with staff the use of closed vs open-ended questions and when to use each kind in interactions with market actors or team members.
  • Create regular opportunities for staff to facilitate meetings. Implement a practice of meeting participants and providing feedback to the facilitator at the end of every office meeting.
  • Encourage staff to use a wide range of facilitation tactics when running meetings or workshops. This can include: presenting information, group work, small group discussions, individual reading, experiential activities.

Guidance for assessing this competency

Direct observation of practice
Provide some time for the practitioner to develop a facilitation plan or strategy for a given scenario or situation with a specific objective. In a simulated setting, with role-playing actors, ask the practitioner to implement their plan. Assess their ability to include all group members, manage conflict, shepherd the conversation, adapt as necessary and work within time limits to achieve the objective.

Presentation of case analysis
Provide a prompt for a situation where practitioners have to interact with a person whose behaviours are easy to judge negatively. For example predatory business behaviour or spending family money on drinking. Get them to role play that interaction. Observe how much they are able to empathise and inquire as opposed to being judgmental and jumping to conclusions.

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