A journey of transformation for organizations
Every meeting is an excellent opportunity to create a motivating space built with the best of each attendee and also a place where leaders can show their abilities to manage people and earn the respect of their teams.
But meetings can also be a place where leaders lose control of their emotions, speak without hearing the voice of others, and waste or fail to take advantage of the time of those who participate, risking the generation of frustration and discouragement when new meetings are called.
Thus, this becomes a vicious circle: more meetings, more frustration. Many people attending unproductive meetings causes processes to slow down and lowers the efficiency of a company.
The role of the facilitator must be to contribute to making meetings productive so that participants can make contributions – this will, in turn, generate more individual satisfaction and motivation to be part of the group.
Many organizations are going through a vital time of transition. Still predominant is a business model in which decisions are passed down through a hierarchical structure without taking into account all the knowledge that exists and the willingness to contribute that there is at each one of the levels of the organization. This model has proven ineffective.
Information becomes watered down as it is passed down through the organization. A decision that was admirably thought out in an office often materializes in a mediocre way. The more levels of hierarchy there are, the greater the distance there is between the idea and putting it into action.
Some people merely “transmit” the message along the way, either because they feel excluded or because they believe they have the necessary talent to improve the proposal yet nobody has asked them to do so. It is important to make decisions including the contribution of those who will be responsible for executing the proposal.
Participating in the decision-making process also brings about individual responsibility. It helps to avoid the phase “the team doesn’t get involved enough!” The response of the team, when faced with this type of charge, is usually, “we don’t really know exactly what he wants.” Both sides are partly right: the leader has not explained himself with enough detail and has not been able to successfully transmit his ideas; the team has not fully involved itself because it really doesn’t understand the final aim, the scope, or how it will be affected by the new proposal.
The good news is that there is a different dynamic that is emerging, in which information is constructed with the help of everyone and differences are accepted in order to generate proposals that the team feels are their own – proposals that can include the criticisms that usually ensue on down the line so as to achieve constructive improvements. This is a dynamic in which results are still important, yet it involves people so that they become committed and feel satisfied. We all know that if people work happily, productivity multiplies. In a business model that understands relationships as the lifeblood of the organization, bonds are the new invisible resource. Systemic facilitation brings together some of the tools that are necessary for this business model to be extended to organizations, and we are beginning to see the following as something normal:
Development of collective wisdom. A meeting is something more than six people merely getting together in a room to exchange information. A systemic facilitator helps to respect order, avoid dispersion, and keep the focus on the goals, creating the atmosphere, etc.
Increase in the quality of relationships. In a healthy network of relationships, decision-making flows more easily. In an unhealthy network of relationships, any misunderstanding can be blown out of proportion to a crisis at the blink of an eye.
A reorganization and understanding of all the parts of the system, discovery of the potential of differences. Different ways of thinking are not contradictory – they are complementary. Who is more important? Is it someone who thinks more clearly? Someone who takes care of his or her wellbeing? Or perhaps someone who does tasks better? All are equally important and necessary for the proper functioning of a team.
The revelation and transformation of toxic patterns in resources to act as a catalyst. Patterns are the soil upon which culture is cultivated. Toxic patterns belong to the unconscious of the organization and they create the dynamics of criticism, intolerance, tardiness, apathy. The systemic facilitator helps to find the origin of those patterns and make them visible. Only then can the organization decide how it wishes to transform them.
The optimization of obsolete structures. An organizational chart with overlapping functions is an example of a structure that can be improved in terms of efficiency. This is the same as when a task is not covered, which tells us that the structure is lacking or that teamwork is not up to par.
Systemic facilitators are meant to accompany teams and companies during this new journey of transformation. Will you join in on this journey?