【英语之角】 Tips for Facilitating Group Discussion
Being Too Practical Too Soon
A new idea can be quickly dismissed by others simply because someone says, "That's not practical; it just won't work." When this happens, it has a tendency to discourage other people from coming up with new ideas of their ownl. If we want people in our organizations to think creatively, we need to avoid evaluating suggestions or applying the test of practicality too quickly in the process.
One company posts a sign during creative thinking sessions that says, "Positive Comments Only." Creative thinking is a form of brainstorming. It's a time for imagining new and different ways of approaching things, without judgmental constraints. People need "open space" to come up with their innovative ideas. After we have genuine new ideas to work with, we can easily determine what's practical.
Keep the Discussion Moving
Discussions can easily get bogged down or start to "drag." Sometimes people go over the same ground again and again, and the group begins to lose interest in the subject. Or people seem to run out of things to say, and everyone stops talking. A good discussion needs a capable leader, someone responsible for keeping the discussion moving and everyone thinking and sharing their ideas with each other.
When a person starts repeating things the group has already heard, the leader can say something like, "Good, Henry, now let's hear from someone else on this; Mr. Yang, what do you think?" if people have said what they have to say in response to one question, it's probably time to ask another, which pushes to a deeper level. Good leaders don't dominate discussions, but they do play an active role in making them lively and productive.
Gordon Harper; 美国ICA资深建导师