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3 steps to becoming a meeting facilitator

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Meetings that consist of you standing up and doing all of the talking make it hard for your team members to engage and may just waste their time, says leadership expert Dan McCarthy. You’ll accomplish more if you let go of your power and become a meeting facilitator.

McCarthy suggests taking these three steps.

1.  Create an agenda. Create a collaborative agenda that invites others to participate in solving a problem. Allow time for group participation.

2.  Choose a constructive setting. When people are uncomfortable, they’re less likely to pay attention and focus. Think about how people will be sitting, whether they’ll be able to hear and if many will be hungry at meeting time.

3.  Learn to read nonverbal communication. Researchers generally say about 50% of communication is nonverbal. As a team leader, you need to be able to read the group’s nonverbal communication to assess people’s engagement and commitment levels.

— Adapted from “9 Meeting Facilitation Skills for Managers,” Dan McCarthy, About.com.

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