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Why Your Facilitator Makes You Break Into Small Groups

February 3rd, 2010 6:16pm - Posted By: Caryn Capriccioso

Hint: It’s not only to give us a break!


When we first begin talking with nonprofit clients about how they want their planning retreats to look and feel, we often hear some version of the following from group process skeptics:

“Don’t make us break into groups; we hated when our other consultant had us do that!”

“We want to stay together as one so everyone can hear each other’s perspectives.

“Why do facilitators always ‘make’ us split up? It takes longer to do the same work.”

Believe it or not, there is a rhyme and reason to breakout groups and it is not because all facilitators are sadists (some maybe, but not all!). Small groups serve a number of very important purposes when it comes to achieving positive results from a retreat process. Just a few of the reaso ...

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Posted in: Nonprofit, Planning

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Where's Your Strategy?

January 4th, 2010 11:12am - Posted By: Caryn Capriccioso

Breaking down the big questions before developing strategy

As strategic planning consultants, we’re often asked how to build in more strategy to a planning process. We all call it strategic planning, so why, then, do so many “strategic” plans wind up being merely a collection of whatever ideas your board can come up with during a 5-6 hour retreat every three years?

Strategy lies in the approaches you take to bridge the divide between where you are today and where you want to go. It’s first about knowing where you are, then understanding the world around you and strategically developing a path that capitalizes on the organization’s strengths while taking into account (and, where possible, taking advantage of) the external environment. As always, the question is: “but how?”

We recently worked with a client during a pre-planning process fo ...

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