Trainees Learn to Guide Collaborative Meetings to Finish Line

The Takeaway: Participants in “Planning and Facilitating Collaborative Meetings” say it helps them keep discussions productive and makes reaching consensus more likely.

A recent survey showed that “Planning and Facilitating Collaborative Meetings” was the most-popular training offered by NOAA’s Office for Coastal Management, and the following stories from graduates show why:

  • Two workgroups improved Washington State’s wetland mitigation processes because their trained facilitator maximized moments of consensus and minimized distractions.
  • A Florida research reserve staffer used her new skills to facilitate 11 official meetings and 14 classes in one year and to help plan the Florida Aquatic Preserve’s annual conference.
  • Two Ohio workgroups are on track to better stabilize Lake Erie shorelines because their trained facilitator keeps indecisive and dominating members from stalling group decisions.

This training is part of the Digital Coast Academy, from NOAA’s Office for Coastal Management, which offers 17 instructor-led and online courses. A recent survey of academy trainees showed that more than 96 percent agreed or strongly agreed with the statement, “I gained knowledge and skills that I will apply in my job.” (2017)

More Information: Planning and Facilitating Collaborative Meetings