How to Facilitate Alignment


Purpose

Building consensus around proper alignment helps groups identify gaps, omissions, overkill, and to confirm appropriateness and balance.

Rationale
Building consensus around alignment can be very challenging, especially if you facilitate exclusively in the narrative world (ie, written words). The FAST method suggests the use of icons (see PowerBalls) that are appropriate and powerful.
Method
Create a matrix of the options (eg, actions) and the targets (eg, goals). Common items that may be aligned include the comparison of strategies to objectives.Alignment consists of four steps. The steps are:

  1. Here you manage the matrix with a linear approach, but be careful to always ask the open-ended question, “To what extent does ‘x’ (ie, option, action, or strategy) support ‘y’ (ie, target, goal, or objective) ?”
  2. Having defined the PowerBalls (preferably with a wall mount or projected explanation that is available throughout for group use—see prior post), label each cell with either a high, low, or moderate PowerBall symbol, indicating the extent to which the option supports the target.
  3. After completing the grid, ask the group to confirm completeness. Add anything missing or modify as required (eg, change or calibrate an option).

Note: The solid balls indicate high, the empty circles indicate low, and the half-filled balls indicate moderate.

Remember friends, nobody is smarter than everybody. For detailed support, see your FAST Facilitator Reference Manual or attend a FAST professional facilitative leadership training workshop offered around the world (see MG Rush for a current schedule — an excellent way to earn 40 PDUs from PMI, CDUs from IIBA, or CEUs).

About these ads

About Terrence Metz
Biographic Sketch — Terrence Metz Since the end of 1999, Terrence Metz has been a founding principal partner and vice president at Morgan Madison & Company. For over twenty years, through professional and academic endeavors, Terrence has focused on improving group decision-making. His experience has proven that two important components to effective group decision-making are: 1. Higher quality information assures higher quality decisions, 2. Properly managed conflict, generates more “options” to consider—
and groups with more options are proven to make higher quality decisions. Terrence is passionate about using and teaching the FAST Facilitative Leadership Training technique so that people and teams make more informed decisions. Terrence is the lead instructor and primary curriculum developer for MG Rush Performance Learning. He earned his Six Sigma Green Belt® from Motorola University and wrote most of the existing FAST curriculum. Terrence made the FAST technique more robust by adding and enhancing decision-making tools such as PowerBalls and the FAST quantitative SWOT technique that is used worldwide by Fortune 1000 companies. He introduced the concept of holism to the field of structured facilitation as a method for keeping discussions on target and aligning deliverables throughout an organization. Since 1999, Terrence has taught over two hundred classes. With a Baccalaureate in Science from Northwestern University (Evanston, IL) and a MBA from NWU’s Kellogg School of Management, his professional experience has focused on product/ process development and innovation. Terrence has a P&L background in capital goods markets with highly engineered-products and services (eg, Honeywell). He is an expert group facilitator, instructor, and developer of workflow processes and Voice of the Market inputs that accelerate commercial success. His engagements have included strategic development, business planning, problem-solving, continuous improvement, organizational design, process design and improvement, customer cognitivity workshops, and market-based product development and launch. His book "Change or Die: The Business Process Improvement Manual" from CRC Press was published internationally in 2012. Terrence completed additional graduate work in inter-cultural decision-making processes at Marquette University, is a former board member of the Product Development Managers’ Association, and a long-time member of the IAF (International Association of Facilitators), MFNA (Midwest Facilitators Network Association), TMAC (Technology Management Association of Chicago) and WFS (World Future Society). Most importantly, Terrence is an effective listener and equally adept at teaching FAST classes as well as galvanizing consensus around complex issues for organizations and groups.

17 Responses to How to Facilitate Alignment

  1. Pingback: How to Manage the Parking Lot and Wrap-up Meetings « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  2. Pingback: Seven Tips for Better Participation in Meetings « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  3. Pingback: How to Facilitate Innovation « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  4. Pingback: Team Charters and Project Plans « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  5. Pingback: Our Most Popular Ground Rules « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  6. Pingback: Facilitate Meaning, Not Words « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  7. Pingback: How to (Not) Gesture while Facilitating « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  8. Pingback: How to Facilitate Brainstorming « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  9. Pingback: Five Reasons to Hold a Facilitated Session « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  10. Pingback: How to Facilitate the Ideation Activity with the Brainstorming Tool « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  11. Pingback: How to Facilitate Consensual Definitions « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  12. Pingback: How to Facilitate Simple Prioritization « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  13. Pingback: How to Design an Agenda « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  14. Pingback: How to Facilitate Building Force-Field Analysis « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  15. Pingback: How to Manage Content Presentations for Consensual Understanding « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  16. Pingback: Responsibility Matrix, Agenda Design, and Parking Lot Management « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

  17. Pingback: How to Facilitate a Consensual Sphere of Concern, Influence, and Control Using the Bookend Method « Facilitative Leadership & Facilitator Training

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 3,735 other followers