No doubt, many minds applied to a problem has the potential to produce a far superior solution than if addressed by only one mind. Moreover, such solution can be produced in much less time. The challenge is in facilitating the associated group-thinking process.
Non-threatening Participlan® sessions
Wherever there is a need for a group of people to meet to resolve an issue, our facilitators use the well-known Participlan® process. Participlan® establishes a non-threatening space in which pre-determined questions are posed. Every participant responds in writing, ensuring diverse thinking and harnessing group wisdom. The responses being confidential circumvents impediments to effective communication such as personality style; seniority; and corporate politics. With the use of online platforms, it is practical to facilitate group thinking amongst participants who are separated in time and space. We often conduct hybrid sessions where a mix of participants is gathered in a physical venue with one or more being remotely located.
Organisations typically generate carefully structured project plans to move the organisation toward achieving its strategic goals. All too often, however, the people tasked with implementing the plans have not been effectively exposed to the development and intended outcome of the plans. This leads to inefficiencies, misunderstandings and, in the worst case, sabotage of the plans. Developing plans using the Participlan® process assures 100% buy-in to the outcome by all participants. Intimate alignment of participants with the plan ensures a far greater rate of successful project outcomes. Inevitably, participation in the Participlan® process proves to be an excellent team-building experience.
Participlan® is mainly used by any organisation that would benefit by assembling appropriate “thought leaders” to establish strategic goals, together with a matching roadmap, or action plans. Other applications of Participlan® include: developing business plans; managing risk; optimising value chains; enhancing supplier-customer relationships; co-ordinating project resources; resolving disputes; conducting opinion surveys; planning product launches; training; and mentoring. In fact, whenever people need to meet with a purpose, Participlan® is a valuable tool in focussing minds and saving meeting time.
Subject Matter Experts (SME)
An external perspective and an expert opinion can take your think tank to a whole new level. Participlan® lends itself to the inclusion of one or more SME’s among the participants. In practice, this concept focusses and optimises the contribution of the SME to a far greater extent than having the SME “make a presentation” to the group.
Consolidated output documentation
Decisions and plans developed during sessions are documented in such a way that participants easily relate the text to the session proceedings with a strong sense of ownership. Any action plans developed are clearly and simply expressed, specifying what needs to be done; by whom; by when; and defining the associated “deliverable”. This motivates each individual to unambiguously implement their contribution to achieving the common goal.
Facilitation Services provided by McManus – Rob in Gauteng with Peter and Nina in Cape Town