Popular facilitation techniques

Facilitation techniques help presenters guide participants through workshops, meetings and other team events in a focused way. We present well-known techniques with their advantages and disadvantages.

Moderation techniques help you to guide the audience through the event with structure and system. (Photo: Unsplash)

What are the tasks of the moderator?

Both offline meetings and virtual meetings need a structured approach to ensure that the time spent together is used effectively. This is exactly what the moderator is responsible for:

  • As Communicator he leads through the agenda,
  • he communicates Between the participants,
  • Motivated for active participation,
  • provides for the necessary Entertainment and
  • must with all this the time in view Retain.

Not an easy job! But with moderation techniques it becomes easier. First of all, an additional tip: Get yourself a moderator’s kit. So you have a flexible tool for moderation on the road.

Common facilitation techniques presented

Moderation techniques are scaffolds that you can use during the moderation. The individual methods can be combined with each other. For example, you can start with the warm-up question, deepen your entry with the flash question, and use the one-point question to gauge attitudes on specific topics.

  • Article Tip: Using creative techniques to realize the full potential of teamwork.

Moderation techniques for warm-up

The following facilitation techniques are designed to get you started in a workshop, seminar or meeting.

#1 Warm-up question

A classic warm-up question is:

What are your expectations for the meeting?

In turn, each participant briefly answers the question. If the participants do not know each other yet, a short round of introductions is recommended.

#2 Mini Fitness Exercise

Warming up during a presentation can also be understood in physical terms: A mini fitness exercise is an excellent motivational technique to get tired employees lively and z. B. to get you out of a late-night slump. A quick exercise: The moderator asks the participants to shake their arms and legs one by one. Complete the mini-warm-up with three jumps up and down. All exercises together should not take more than two minutes, then the participants are ready for the actual meeting.

  • Article tip: Fit in the office: 10 exercises

Facilitation techniques for workshops& Meetings

The team has been working together for a while. But also effective and efficient? With these moderation techniques for workshops and meetings you will get even better results.

#1 Flash

The moderator formulates a short question. Then, one by one, each person briefly answers the question from a first-person perspective. This should include answers from the "Man-perspective can be avoided. It is important that the participants stay with themselves during the answering process. Here, the moderator must be attentive and intervene in case of doubt, as well as in case of too rambling remarks. Answers are not commented on, but left to stand on their own merits. Only when the flashlight round has been completed does the discussion begin.

#2 Brainstorming

The facilitator states the goal of the brainstorming session and the time allotted to participants. Then he gives the starting signal and the team members write spontaneous ideas for solving the problem on a piece of paper or in a document on the computer. The facilitator ends the brainstorming and then starts the idea evaluation in the group.

#3 One-point question

This moderation technique is aimed at the spontaneous assessment of team members. Each participant receives a sticky dot. On a whiteboard or flipchart, he or she is then confronted with a table containing several options to choose from. An example: the participants are asked how important they spontaneously think the measure to be discussed is. The following are then available for selection:

  • Not important at all
  • not important
  • Important
  • very important

Each participant places the sticky dot where it fits. The moderator then asks follow-up questions about the individual assessments and the reasons for them. This motivational technique is useful for starting a seminar or workshop.

#4 Multi-point questioning

In the multi-point poll, as the name suggests, several points can be distributed by each voting participant. This is particularly suitable for determining focal points, be they thematic focal points for a meeting or internal company votes. Here it is possible to work well with weightings, for example, two points can be assigned to an option in order to emphasize the personal importance of one’s own choice. It is important for the multi-point questioning that you consider beforehand how many alternatives and points you want to provide for the assignment.

#5 card query

The moderator writes down a question and attaches the piece of paper to a pin board. Now the participants are given index cards on which they write down their views, aspects, thoughts, assessments and further questions. The cards are then attached to the pin board and discussed among the participants.

#6 Metaplan technique

The metaplan technique is a continuation of the card query. It is suitable for the collection of ideas and thus for the idea management. However, the moderation technique is also suitable for structuring and visualizing ideas, as it works in clusters.

First, the moderator poses a question. Then the participants write down their ideas in bullet points on index cards and put them on the pin board. The goal is now for the participants to explain their own keywords, but at the same time to put them in relation to the other keywords that their colleagues have put on the whiteboard. This creates clusters that can lead to new, original solutions.

#7 Mind mapping

The facilitator writes a central concept in the middle of a whiteboard. Then they ask the participants to write down associations that go with the term. The facilitator notes these down and links the keywords to the main term by drawing in lines. The moderator ties in with the sub-headings in order to add further headwords or. To record associations. The mind mapping method helps to map ideas, goals and solution approaches in a visually structured way. It can also be used digitally with mind mapping tools.

#8 Pair interview

This method works in pairs. The moderator has the task of pairing up team members who are as unknown to each other as possible. They interview each other. These can be free interviews or conversations with questions given by the facilitator.

The answers to the questions are written down on a poster. After completing each other’s round of questioning, team members ask the other or. The jointly achieved results on the question are presented to the participants. The pair interview is a good way for the team to get to know each other better and to develop solutions to problems together.

#9 Stimulus word method

The facilitator writes individual words on a poster, whiteboard or flipchart. The meeting or. Workshop participants now write themselves which terms, ideas or solutions come to mind.

You can also use tools: Take a newspaper or magazine and open it at a random place. The first word that catches your eye is noted down. Now the participants name associations that come to them in connection with the problem and the moderator also writes these down for all to see. The result is creative cross-connections you probably wouldn’t have made otherwise.

  • Here you can find creativity techniques.

Moderation techniques for the conclusion

The sign-off moderation is an important step in creating the final impression that attendees mentally take home with them from an event. Therefore, the importance of moderation should not be underestimated. Effective facilitation techniques for this are:

#1 Focusing results

What results came out of the meeting? Who will do which tasks in the future, what should be discussed in the next meeting?? At the end of the meeting, the moderator summarizes all the important points and asks if there are still any questions or objections. If there is no objection after 3 seconds, the meeting is closed – for example, with a wish to the team members for a successful day.

  • Tip: Always prepare meeting minutes to record results in writing.

If objections do arise, the moderator decides: Can the objection be clarified in a short time?? Or does it take more time and rest in a new meeting where the participants are fresh again?

#2 Say thank you

It can be so simple sometimes: With a concluding Thank you or Thank you The moderator shows appreciation to the participants. Beware, however, of the following wording:

Thank you for your attention.

This is a phrase, not very original and also a bit stiff. A normal expression of thanks is not much more original, but it includes more than just attention, namely also the active participation of all people.

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