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Facilitation Resources

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Publication date: Copyright © 1999 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.

Contents | Authors | Order Form | Reference List

Introduction to Facilitation Resources

During the 1990s there has been a renewed interest in citizen involvement in community decisions. While many issues are still decided by powerful and financially strong networks, the ability of the average citizen to collect relevant information, address issues with intelligence, and initiate public meetings has made the public influence greater.

Those who work with organizations have learned the need for effective facilitation skills. In the Foreword to Facilitator's Guide to Participatory Decision Making by Sam Kaner, Michael Doyle presents two important lessons learned. "Lesson one: if people don't participate in and 'own' the solution to the problems or agree to the decision, implementation will be half-hearted at best, probably misunderstood, and, more likely than not, fail. The second lesson is that the key differentiating factor in the success of an organization is not just the products and services, not just its technology or market share, but the organization's ability to elicit, harness, and focus the vast intellectual capital and goodwill in their members, employees, and stakeholders. When these get energized and focused, the organization becomes a powerful force for positive change in today's business and societal environments."

Facilitation Resources, available as a set of eight volumes, is an effort to enhance volunteers' group facilitation techniques. The participants will be able to use the skills in facilitating nonprofit groups and organizations through important discussions vital to the organization and to the community.

Table of Contents

Volume 1. Understanding Facilitation Volume 2. Contracting and Handling Logistics Volume 3. Getting Focused: Vision/Mission/Goals Volume 4. Managing Group Interaction Volume 5. Making Group Decisions Volume 6. Dealing with Group Conflict Volume 7. Utilizing Diversity, Power, and Ethics Volume 8. Designing a Volunteer Facilitation Progam

About the Authors and Additional Contributors

The authors of this guide have over 115 combined years of facilitator experience. The members have tested and refined many exercises and resources while facilitating and training a wide range of community groups, organizations, and companies. They recognize that in this work called facilitation, one never quits learning.

Marian Anderson

Marian has served as Extension Educator in Rice County since 1989. Previous to that, she was Extension Educator in Big Stone County from 1968 to 1989. She earned a B.S. degree from Iowa State University and a Master of Education from the University of Minnesota in Home Economics Education. Marian specializes in Leadership/Citizenship Education, is a member of the Minnesota Association of Extension Educators, Minnesota Association of Extension Family and Consumer Science, Minnesota Facilitators Network, and many community organizations and networks. She is a contributor to Kiwanis and the Rice Unit of the American Cancer Society.

Sharon Roe Anderson

Sharon is the Director of International Exchange Programs and Associate Director of the Reflective Leadership Center at the Humphrey Institute of the University of Minnesota. The Center's approach to understanding and enhancing leadership development has drawn international attention and recognition. Sharon has taught and consulted extensively with organizations and communities on "collective leadership," doing together what is not possible as individuals. She has developed leadership centers as well as programs for people at all levels in the educational, political, community, and business arenas. A recipient of many honors and awards, Sharon specializes in a pragmatic approach and is sought out as a strategist and coach in issues of leadership, shared power, proactive change, informed decision making, and excellence in organizations.

Mary Laeger-Hagemeister

Mary has been Extension Educator in Steele County since September of 1997. Her primary responsibilities are youth development and leadership/citizenship issues. Previously, Mary was an extension educator for Penn State University in the Harrisburg area for nine years. Mary holds a Bachelor of Arts in Home Economics from Concordia College, Moorhead, MN, and a Master of Education in Individual and Family Development from Penn State. She is an active member in the Minnesota Association of Extension 4-H Agents, and the Minnesota Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences, and is a Certified Family Life Educator through the National Association on Family Relations.

Donna Rae Scheffert

Donna Rae has been a faculty member at the University of Minnesota Extension Service since 1987 specializing in ethics and public leadership, community and organizational issues, and international study exchanges. She is currently studying for a Ph.D. in adult development and education and holds a Master's degree in continuing studies with an emphasis in leadership development. Donna Rae has published several articles in professional journals.

Roger Steinberg

Roger is an assistant professor and rural community development specialist with the University of Minnesota Extension Service, working out of the University Center, Rochester. He also holds an adjunct appointment of the faculty of the Hubert Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs at the University. His work involves educational seminars, workshops, and conferences, bringing University faculty and students out from campus to work on community issues, and assisting communities, groups, and organizations with strategic planning, goal setting, and leadership development. This work is done through local Extension offices. Roger grew up in South Dakota and Northwestern Iowa and is a graduate of South Dakota State University.

Production Staff

Karen Burke: Project Manager
    Communication and Educational Technology Services
    University of Minnesota Extension Service
Jim Kiehne: Graphics Designer
Nancy Goodman: Editor

Additional Contributors
Sara Taylor
Mary Ann Gwost Hennen
Kim Boyce
Lisa Hinz

A special thanks to the initial participants in piloting the Facilitation Resources volumes:

Rebecca Bachrach
Jane Boots
Richard Cook
Lynnette Estrem
Willard Estrem
Brenda Guderian
Nancy Jenson
Kirsten Kaffine
Mark Kuether
Gene Kuntz
Karen Kuntz
Daniel Lee
Jean McCarthy
Melissa Neil
Dave Peterson
Tom Pietz
Mary Schroeder
Judy Srsen
April Sutor
Larry Tande
Jill Vollmer
Toni Webster
Tara Winter

Copyright © 2013 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.

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