8 Reasons to Use a Facilitator for Your Next Strategic Planning Session (If you have one)

As a leader, you want to be fully engaged in your strategic development process. If you are having to participate and facilitate at the same time, it's nearly impossible to give each of those things 100% of your attention. Here are 8 reasons why you should use a professional facilitator when going through your strategic process.

1. Everyone can participate – if you’re the leader, you can’t lead your team and facilitate a conversation at the same time.  At least not an effective one.

2. We have a specialized and structured process - All we do is strategic planning. Our process is designed to obtain buy-in and agreement quickly, so that your team can be on the same page and make the best decisions for your company as possible.

3. We can ask the right questions to get to the heart of the matter - Having a facilitator creates a safe space for people to ask questions that get to the root of issues without having their concerns come out as personal attacks. This helps address the most pressing topics to a level of satisfaction for the whole group.

4. We’re neutral to the decisions - Our main focus is create powerful discussions about the present and future of the organization.  By approaching the discussions in an objective manner, we don’t have to worry about getting our way, or having a decision go one way or another.

5. A facilitator sets the tone - By having a facilitator come into your organization, it shows your staff that you’re serious about investing in the future and the well-being of your organization.

6. We control the time and the conversation - One of the roles of the facilitator is to ensure people stay on task and speak about relevant topics.  This is slightly harder to do when management is leading the session and there are power dynamics at play.

7. We’re used to dealing with people - Our job is to manage people and make sure communication lines are open for everyone. We also don’t know what’s considered taboo in the culture and have no power dynamics to avoid; Our job is to get all the information on the table that’s relevant to the future of the organization and probe more deeply if needed.

8. You get more done by using someone external to make the first move - As strategic planning facilitators, we won’t be the ones leading the change in your organization on a day to day basis. We do, however, set your team up to realize the next steps and easy wins to get the ball rolling

Need an expert facilitator for your next strategic planning session? Please call us. We are here to help!

-Oscar Montenegro