When facilitating a group of people to create ideas in a brainstorm: ‘Where is your attention? On their genius or yours?’
This is the first question we pose on our Brilliant Brainstorm training that we run at Now Go Create. You’d be surprised how many people who lead brainstorms (especially in the creative industries) think it’s totally up to them to come up with all the creative brilliance themselves. That’s a hell of a lot of pressure for one person to create on demand. Not to mention all the other things you have to attend to as a brainstorm leader; the room, the process, the people, the product, the client, the scribing, the outcome, plus those brilliant ideas. All those busy and competing thoughts, will do you your head in, it’s not unlike shaking a snow globe and expecting yourself to see clearly through the chaos.
Well on our recent open training, we opened up the inquiry: ‘What if your primary role as brainstorm facilitator was to help others come up with all the answers themselves?’
We believe that people most support what they create – so much so, that on our recent workshop we conduct an experiment with the participants answering their own questions. The attendees set their own agenda, and each person facilitated a session themselves on a topic of interest and allowed their groups to come up with their own solutions instead of generating the ideas and answers themselves. They focussed on practising key skills such as facilitator presence, probing questions, listening and distilling the essence.
Golden nuggets of insights generated by all those attending the training included:
- Just trust in the process and believe in the people
- I can be prepared for anything
- Embrace the silences
- There is no such thing as a difficult person
- I can trust myself
- Listening is the key
- People are geniuses
Not to mention that they identified loads of practical facilitation tools and techniques. People really are amazing when you believe in their innate creativity and can listen them into brilliance. And perhaps, that’s the true art of facilitating genius. And in the words of one some of our recent attendees:
‘It demystified the art of facilitation and gave me the tools to do it with confidence.’
‘Of immense practical value for both me personally and my work’
Here’s a little taster of what you can expect to learn on our workshop Brilliant Brainstorms. Buy the book: Facilitating Genius by Elizabeth Lovius. It’s a labour of love that puts down a lifetime of experience and is jam packed with facilitation tips, techniques and insights
Written by Elizabeth Lovius – an award winning trainer who has over 20 years’ experience developing thousands of people. She has worked with household brands in all sectors as a trainer, facilitator and coach, catalysing the transformation of individuals, teams and organisations. She facilitates workshops that enable people to have big relationships and outstanding creative performance; giving people freedom to shine.
Follow her on twitter @elizabethlovius or find out more here.