The Secrets of Facilitation: The SMART Guide to Getting Results with Groups 2nd Edition, Kindle Edition

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ISBN-13: 978-1118206133
ISBN-10: 1118206134
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Editorial Reviews

From the Author

I am very exciting about this second edition! Jossey-Bass has encouraged the book to be expanded to include so much more. So what's new in the 2nd Edition?  A lot!  While I have kept the features many have said they liked in the first edition, in the new book you will find:

· Four new chapters covering:
o Virtual meetings
o Facilitating large groups and conferences
o Facilitating cross-cultural groups
o Building an in-house network of facilitators

· Ten engagement strategies that we teach to advanced facilitators
o Brief encounters
o Dump and clump
o Elevator speech
o Forced analogy
o Future letter
o Last person standing
o More of / Less of
o Start / Stop / Continue
o Talking Stick
o The Whip        

· Eleven new secrets covering the following topics:
o Defining the session product: the three Hs
o Managing a sponsor's presence
o Exciting people in the opening
o Gaining consensus on wording
o   Preparing for a virtual meeting
o Engaging people virtually
o Facilitating large groups
o Facilitating conferences
o Managing time with speakers
o Facilitating cross-cultural groups
o Establishing an internal facilitator cadre

· Sixteen additional case studies, including:
o The facilitator's role in civic leadership groups
o The starting question to engage the VP's number two
o Preparing for vision councils
o The power of the pen, ELMO and parking boards
o The low-key facilitator
o The virtual strategy monitoring session
o Facilitating a conference on spirituality
o Facilitating the strategic plan for a Caribbean government
o The facilitator development program at Saudi Aramco
o The pull strategy at Hydro One

· Expanded information on handling dysfunctions, including how to prevent the dysfunction, what to do in the moment when you are facing the dysfunction, and what to do after the moment

· An expanded list of dysfunctions which adds the following five:
o Cell Phone Junkie
o Topic Jumper
o Interrupter
o Low Energy Group
o Time Pressured Group

· New material on numerous topics including:
o Applying the secrets to running a simple meeting
o Applying the secrets to the first meeting of a task force
o Should the sponsor be in the room?
o When should you arrive for a meeting?
o  The informed majority decision making process
o Energy and authenticity
o Crossing the river: my favorite team building activity
o Defining what can be communicated following the session
o Interrupting the effects of institutional power through facilitation
o Facilitator neutrality: fact or fiction?
o Facilitator certification

· A new feature in every chapter answering, "Why do this?" to highlight why a particular approach or strategy is so critically important.

· Recommended exercises at the end of each chapter to suggest ways to practice one or more key concepts covered in the chapter
My hope is that you find this new edition a worthy addition to your facilitation resource library! --This text refers to the paperback edition.

From the Inside Flap

The revised edition of this facilitation classic offers a wealth of targeted techniques for facilitators who seek effective, consistent, and repeatable results. Based on Michael Wilkinson's proven SMART (Structured Meeting And Relating Techniques) approach, The Secrets of Facilitation can help to achieve stellar results when managing, presenting, teaching, planning, and selling, as well as other professional and personal situations.

This expanded edition includes new chapters on facilitating virtual meetings, cross-cultural teams, and large groups and conferences. It also provides a series of strategies for engaging teams, additional information about making meetings more productive, and further guidance on preventing dysfunctional behavior. In addition, the book contains a wealth of fresh case studies and an ancillary website with must-have tools and techniques for both the beginner and the seasoned facilitator.

Praise for the First Edition of The Secrets of Facilitation

"One of the single most powerful processes is the ability to successfully lead a group to an impactful, actionable outcome. In The Secrets of Facilitation, beginning and experienced facilitators alike will find tools to take their results to the next level."

Jim Canfield, chief learning officer, TEC International

"This book shares 'The Secrets' that have been the basis of my facilitation practice for over a decade."

Kerri McBride, past chair, International Association of Facilitators

"In my career, I've seen many, many facilitators. Michael Wilkinson is the best. 'The Secrets' explain why."

Len Roberts, CEO, RadioShack

"We have trained over 100 leaders and business analysts in 'The Secrets.' Great facilitation works."

Peter Scott, executive general manager, MLC–National Australia Bank

"At last there is a practical, hands-on guide for anyone who works with groups or teams. This book delivers!"

Ann Herrmann-Nehdi, CEO, Herrmann International, Herrmann Brain Dominance Indicator

--This text refers to the paperback edition.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B00DBOZPI4
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Jossey-Bass; 2nd edition (August 28, 2012)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ August 28, 2012
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 8398 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 640 pages
  • Lending ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.4 out of 5 stars 45 ratings

About the author

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Here is the background information we give to the media!

Michael Wilkinson, author of The Secrets of Facilitation ' The SMART Guide to Getting Results with Groups, is one of the nation's leaders in the facilitation industry. He is a Board member of the National Institute for Facilitation ( and founder of the National Facilitator Database ( He has been awarded both the Certified Professional Facilitator and the Certified Master Facilitator designations for experience and demonstrated expertise in facilitation. In December, 2003 he was named Facilitator of the Year by the Southeast Association of Facilitators ( for contributions to the field.

Michael is founder and Managing Director for Leadership Strategies ' The Facilitation Company ( His firm is the east coast leader in facilitator training and specializes in providing organizations with professional facilitators to lead executive retreats and task forces through strategic planning, process improvement, information needs analysis, and issue resolution.

Michael is a much sought after facilitator, trainer and speaker, both in the U.S. and around the globe. He has completed international assignments in Bangkok, Brisbane, Glasgow, Hamburg, Hong Kong, London, Melbourne, Milan, Singapore, Sydney and New Zealand.

His client experience covers a wide range of public and private sector organizations, including The Coca-Cola Company, Sears, Unisys, KPMG Peat Marwick, Storehouse Furniture, the City of Atlanta, Families First, the American Cancer Society and the United Way of America.

Prior to Leadership Strategies, Mr. Wilkinson spent eight years in the information technology practice of Ernst & Young's Management Consulting Group. He has been a certified data processor and was selected by the Governor of Georgia to serve for three terms on his twelve-member Information Technology Policy Council.

Michael's life is a storybook example of the positive results of affirmation action. Born in Washington, DC, he spent his early years living in a government housing project. As one of six children, he and his brothers and sisters worked odd jobs from an early age to help supplement the family's very modest income. While a newspaper carrier, he received a scholarship through the help of the Washington Post to attend St. Mark's School, an exclusive New England preparatory school. The academic environment was much more challenging for him, as indicated by his early grades. However, within three years, he was rated in the top quartile of his class. As a senior, he was named a National Merit Scholar and awarded a grant by the UPS Foundation to attend Dartmouth College.

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