A World Class Facilitator is at the Heart of being a Professional Consultant and Trainer Part 6

This month let’s have a look at some simple Do’s and Don’ts

Before facilitating a course, you should attend it yourself as a participant, and want to help others improve their work. You should have real examples of how the course helped you.

When facilitating a course, always ensure you can explain:

  1. How one section links to another
  2. What is the purpose of each section you are facilitating
  3. What are the key messages for the participants from each section
  4. What is the link to the next section?

And don’t forget that much of the learning for the participants is from your feedback, they look for this as much as the content!

 Guidelines for Giving Constructive Feedback

  1. Start with the positive.

Most people need encouragement and to be told if they are doing something well

  1. Give specific examples.

“You were great” or “that was very good” are not very helpful comments if you want someone to continue to develop. Try instead to be very specific: “I liked the way you introduced that speech, but I think it needs developing more in terms of policy”.

  1. Give feedback only on behaviour which can be changed.

There is not much point in telling someone that you do not like the shape of their nose – there are probably many behaviours they change. “Did you know you pace up and down all the time you are talking – I find that very distracting”.

  1. Use “I” words

Talk about how you are affected by their behaviour, as in the last example. Do not generalise: “people find it very distracting when you walk about…”

  1. Suggest alternatives

Make sure that if you offer negative feedback that it is constructive and that you can suggest other ways in which something could be done.

“I think you would make a better impression on people if you went forwards to meet them with your arm outstretched rather than waiting for them to come to you”

  1. What does the feedback say about you

As you think about the feedback you are going to give, ask yourself what does it say about you – the feedback we give is likely to stem from our values.

  1. Feedback must leave the receiver with a choice

If we do not demand change but leave it to the receiver to decide whether or not to accept the feedback then there is less likely to be resistance.

Now think about the guidelines you might write for receiving feedback!


 Martin Gummery

Managing Director, NewLeaf International Ltd

Tel: 01905 425209

Email: headoffice@newleafinter.co.uk