4 reasons to start your meetings with a check in

Circle by Helen Titchen-Beeth

Check ins are a fundamental ritual in nearly every meeting I am involved in. I use them because:

Check ins invite presence. The ritual marks the transition from whatever came before the meeting to now, the time together. It allows us to leave our emails, our todo list, our family crisis behind and take a moment to arrive. Check ins allow connection. The ritual asks us to show up with […]

Practice Notes: The Workshop Book

Practice Notes: The Workshop Book

When I facilitate, I take notes. Lots of notes. I come with a set of notes, including the workshop design and process plans. I have checklists for the preparation of the venue. During the meeting, I jot down notes, names, observations. At the end of each day, I review the process, adjust the original design and rephrase questions. Over the years, quite a stack of these notes had assembled in […]

A conversation is a conversation, even online

Yes, this was a first, and it was an experiment. A few weeks ago, the GIZ Leadership Lab attracted nearly thirty participants from all corners of the world. We had invited them to a co-creation session for a leadership approach for global sustainability – and we had invited them to join us from the comfort of their offices: online.

With five breakout sessions and three co-presenters, my task was […]

7 steps for better meetings

More often than not, you’ll find yourself in the situation where external facilitation is just not an option. Maybe there’s no budget, maybe there are political concerns or maybe there is simply no time to involve yet another person.

Still, your meetings are important, and you need to be sure that you get the best possible results. You and your participants have better things to do than sit in yet another […]

Beyond Talking Heads

Ever been to a conference that followed this pattern? Opening words from the organizers, followed by a long keynote speech with confusing Powerpoint slides and a coffee break. Breakout sessions with more presentations from the panel followed by a Q&A session dominated by rambling questions and no common thread. I bet you have.

This classic “Talking Heads” pattern is popular with conference organizers because it is easy, predictable and flatters those on […]