Facilitating Difficult Situations

Target Audience
Expected Duration
Lesson Objectives
Course Number

How do you deal with the group that has an exceptionally dominant person who doesn't let anyone else have say, or trivializes the contributions of others? How do you keep a faction from taking over? What is the best means of handling direct challenges to you or the group? What do you do when you know someone is deliberately trying to derail your meeting and/or success? What is the best way to clear the air when there is tension? Welcome to the tough stuff in facilitation. In this course you will learn to recognize and deal with the most difficult aspects of facilitating groups. You will explore typical trouble spots, like dealing with side conversations. Discover ways to maintain and channel enthusiasm with high-participation groups and turn around low-participation situations. Learn techniques to help you handle sabotage and passive/aggressive behavior. Capitalize on confrontation by shifting your analysis from 'what's wrong' to assessing 'what is really going on.' You will also learn the benefits of conflict and apply tips to transform chaos into creativity.

Target Audience
Managers, team leaders, or anyone who will conduct/lead meetings or work groups.

Expected Duration (hours)

Lesson Objectives

Facilitating Difficult Situations

  • recognize the importance of being able to handle disruptive behavior.
  • sequence the steps of the intervention model to handle two people arguing.
  • apply strategies to effectively diminish the impact of pessimists and critics in a given meeting.
  • identify the telltale signs of passive/aggressive behavior.
  • use three steps to effectively deal with an obstructionist, in a given scenario.
  • recognize the benefits of dealing effectively with distractions, deference, factions, and groupthink.
  • apply the appropriate steps to effectively handle a distraction in a given scenario.
  • identify optimum questions to diagnose deference effectively.
  • identify methods to defuse factions.
  • identify troubleshooting techniques to challenge groupthink.
  • recognize the value of generating active participation in facilitated groups.
  • effectively deal with three types of high-participation behavior, in a given scenario.
  • effectively deal with two types of low-participation issues, in a given scenario.
  • identify techniques to handle and effectively respond to challenges.
  • recognize the importance of clearing the air to release tension and get a group back on track.
  • effectively help a group vent to clear the air, in a given scenario.
  • use reframing techniques to help a group clear the air, in a given scenario.
  • identify ways to use the clear-the-air technique called "listing the options."
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