Facilitating Reflective Discussion

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Working in teams requires facilitating critical discussion frequently among the group. Pose reflective questions, have people share more, and elicit pros, cons, and next steps.

How to
  1. Start with open questions. Start with questions like, “What was interesting about what we did?” “Where do you see opportunity? Challenges?”
  2. Embrace silence. Give time for people to think and start contributing. It will seem like a long, silent pause—but be patient. Someone will fill the void.
  3. Restate contributions and what you’re hearing. Ask for differing points of view and encourage people to build on each other’s thoughts.
  4. Capture ideas, phrases and questions. Draw diagrams of what you’re hearing. This helps people think about the content and contribute more.
  5. Close with next steps. End the discussion with participants suggesting what to keep in mind as the project moves forward.
Tips & Tricks

Make sure other people are speaking more than you. Don’t allow debate. While asking open ended questions may feel vague, they lead to important contributions from participants.