Session type:

Session duration:
150 minutes

Presented by:

Suzanne Morrison


Chris Downey

Kaizen Coaching Ltd

About this Hands-On

In this workshop, we will take a deep dive into facilitation and you'll get the chance to learn some new techniques and get hands-on practice.

We'll share our favourite tried and tested formats for facilitating different sizes of groups and sessions, and you'll get to test some of these formats out. We'll also explain how to deal with common problems during facilitation, such as disruptive people.

This is an interactive facilitation workshop that we've been running internally within our company for 18 months. We've received consistently high feedback from the workshop and we've continually improved it over the last year.

We use training techniques from Training from the Back of the Room to help participants learn new skills effectively and enjoyably.

The areas that we cover include:

  • responsibilities of a facilitator
  • hands-on practice and feedback on your facilitation skills (in small groups) including deep listening, asking questions, staying neutral, being inclusive, recording ideas, testing assumptions and more
  • formats you can use for different types of sessions e.g. brainstorming, facilitating large groups, online meetings, increasing participation when there are dominating or quiet people (and a chance to try out some different formats)
  • body language, how to interpret it and what to do with it when you are facilitating
  • know what to avoid when you are facilitating (including some of the mistakes we've made and learned from)
  • strategies for dealing with difficult people in meetings - when and how to make interventions
The workshop alternates between roughly 10 minutes of teaching and 10 minutes of practical activity.
Practical activities include:

  • self-assessment of skills (reflective exercise for individuals)
  • facilitating a discussion in small groups, while practising all the different skills
  • identifying examples of body language from photos and what they mean (and how to use this information when you are facilitating)
  • trying out new facilitation formats (participants can choose from a number of formats including reverse brainstorming, 6-3-5 brainstorming, goldfish bowl, 6 thinking hats and more)
  • reading a description of common problems during facilitation and coming up with an intervention (in small groups)

About the Speakers

Suzanne Morrison

Suzanne Morrison is an agile coach at Skyscanner in Edinburgh. She started out as a software developer and became interested in agile back in 2006, when she learned about and implemented scrum for the first time. On a typical day at Skyscanner, she can be found running lean and agile training courses, helping new squads and tribes to start up and continuously improve, or using TOC (Theory of Constraints) techniques to find root causes of problems and improve flow.


Chris Downey

Chris Downey is an agile coach at Kaizen Coaching Ltd, helping both technical and non-technical teams get the benefits from lean, agile and Theory of Constraints. He has a passion for continuous improvement and is an avid fan of impact mapping.


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