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Many Groups, One Facilitator? Here’s How to Guarantee Great Breakout Notes

Hey folks! I’m writing you from Central Washington. I’m here to graphic record for a workshop convened by a team of wildfire researchers I’ve been creating a series of videos for – I’m hoping this deep dive with stakeholders in the community leads to some interesting dimensions in the final video of their series!

There will be several breakout sessions, so to support the groups visually, I worked with the facilitation team to develop a series of templates to fill in. Here’s where they really shine:

  • They keep the visual aesthetic of the entire meeting similar – everything is custom and hand-drawn.

  • When each group has the same key questions to answer, we ensure that the information shared back to the group is focused and at the right level of detail to move the group toward meeting goals.

You don’t have to be a master painter to create a useful template – check out these other examples from graphic facilitation clients I’ve created recently.

ConverSketch Graphic Recording_CoMFRT Template.JPG

Want to guarantee the notes from your next breakout group are top notch?

Once again, thank you from my heart and soul for your support, great senses of humor, brilliant minds, collaboration and what you're each doing to make the world a better place.

Cheers,

Karina Signature_100.png



Where in the World is ConverSketch?

Wenatchee, Washington:  Working with US Forest Service wildfire researchers, social scientists, and local fire stakeholders to share findings and ensure research is providing useful and actionable information for local practitioners.

Wenatchee, Washington: Working with US Forest Service wildfire researchers, social scientists, and local fire stakeholders to share findings and ensure research is providing useful and actionable information for local practitioners.

Fort Collins, Colorado:  Graphically facilitating a retreat for the City Natural Areas citizen advisory board focused on visioning for the future. Here’s a template individuals filled out then shared with partners.

Fort Collins, Colorado: Graphically facilitating a retreat for the City Natural Areas citizen advisory board focused on visioning for the future. Here’s a template individuals filled out then shared with partners.



Chicago, Illinois:  For some professional development to improve my digital graphic recording skills to broaden the remote services I can provide and enrich in-person digital work. Here’s a photo of some street art I played with during an exercise in the course. I HIGHLY recommend  Raquel’s workshops !

Chicago, Illinois: For some professional development to improve my digital graphic recording skills to broaden the remote services I can provide and enrich in-person digital work. Here’s a photo of some street art I played with during an exercise in the course. I HIGHLY recommend Raquel’s workshops!

One Question You Can Ask to Unleash the Creative Potential of Your Team

Howdy folks –

I’m writing this as I travel through high country towns and windswept mountain passes down to Durango, Colorado to graphic facilitate a workshop to help a client develop a series of explainer videos.

This interdisciplinary team is comprised of researchers and practitioners who are all experts in their own right, and approach the work they do from different perspectives and backgrounds. They have different needs that they want to share in this video series, and yet will need to work collaboratively in this one day intensive retreat to agree on video content, who will be watching and how to create authentic connections with them, and what path the story will take.

That’s a lot of decisions to be making as a group. I mean, sometimes it’s hard enough to make decisions on your own. However, there’s an important step to encourage the group to take before we get into critical thinking and decision-making, which many groups overlook or rush through.

The Brainstorm. It’s easy for groups to share more obvious ideas, or things that have been brought up time and again. But how can you encourage your team to move beyond the easy and into the territory of Transformational?

It’s a simple question but requires careful curating.

Ask your team to suspend judgement while brainstorming.

To do this well, you’ve got to create an environment where people feel safe sharing half-finished ideas that aren’t perfect (let’s be honest, most ideas aren’t perfect the first time they’re shared, even if we think they are). Where someone can share a seemingly outrageous idea and instead of immediately looking for what’s wrong with it, others ask how they can support or build on it. You need to build in and allow time for people to shrug off their scratchy customary habits of critiquing, and to slip into something a little more fun; a space of curiosity. Allowing for White Space, for intentionally less-structured time and not immediately jumping in as a leader. Suspending judgement is the key.

Still curious about decision-making? Asking yourself “Okay, I’d have all these great ideas from my team…what next?” That’s what the next ConverSketch email will be all about how to turn that creativity into clear priorities and make solid decisions that everyone will stand behind.

Once again, thank you from my heart and soul for your support, great senses of humor, brilliant minds, collaboration and what you're each doing to make the world a better place.

Cheers, Karina

Where in the World is ConverSketch?

I'm down in Durango, Colorado this week to help a team develop the heart and audiences for a video series before we leap into script writing and story boarding. Here's a template we'll fill out as a group to refine and agree on ideas.

I'm down in Durango, Colorado this week to help a team develop the heart and audiences for a video series before we leap into script writing and story boarding. Here's a template we'll fill out as a group to refine and agree on ideas.