Big wheel keeps on turning

We ran our first co-facilitated Rhizome workshop last week for (mostly) Bike It workers at Sustrans. The venue was friendly and by the docks in Bristol – the International YHA. The food was wholesome and veggie/vegan. Lots of natural light, access to AV equipment, if you need it; and there are flat walls you can put blu-tack on. I recommend it as a place to work for those of you looking for a venue for up to 20 people in Bristol. As there’s also good transport links – just a ten/fifteen minute walk from Temple Meads station.

But, to the training. A day is not a lot of time to train people to be facilitators. As well as getting people up on their feet every now and again for some relevant or irrelevant physical activity; we spent the morning looking at some concepts and core skills (like active listening, neutrality) and the afternoon practising some small group methods.

Several people gave us feedback – like Jessica…

and Owen…

and we got a good selection of written comments. Here’s a choice few –

What worked well? Active listening in pairs practise (x3)/Good variety of activities and right pace/Liked being integrated as groups and being able to give and receive feedback on performance/Perfect balance of listening and doing – it was good to develop ideas on meeting skills through learning how to run meetings

What worked least well? Slightly rushed at the end/I had a mixed response to the ice breakers and energy boosters/Just a lot of info to take in/Some of the activities could have had a clearer explanation/Last part of the facilitation exercise was a little confusing

Good constructive feedback and I spoke to some of the people who wrote these comments. I’m mulling over how we might adapt the practice sessions. Our intention was to make it easy to understand the task – a couple of people didn’t think it was. So re-design for next time.

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