My practice is grounded in both my unique experiences and my extensive education working with groups and individuals. I use innovative methods to connect the dots for people. One of the techniques I use is visual facilitation: recording what’s happening in a meeting or session using visuals, words, colors, images. These visuals are not just meant to look pretty: they are used for a strategic purpose.
Nearly 75% of the neurons in our brains that process sensory information—smell, taste, touch, hearing, sight—are dedicated to vision. (Dan Roam; Unfolding the Napkin; 2009) That’s a significant asset which is being overlooked in most meetings today.
Integrating visual thinking into a meeting helps people:
- Make sense of things
- Reflect on their words and thoughts
- Tap their imagination and creativity
- Stay engaged
- Make connections
- Create space for diversity in process, learning and thinking
In addition, all next steps, outcomes and owners are captured graphically so that it can be seen, remembered and touched. In this way, the meeting outcomes “live on” more effectively and spur action and energy.
If you’re holding a strategic retreat, a leadership team meeting, or an offsite or visioning meeting with your team and want to creatively tackle difficult challenges in a fun way, let me guide you with one of my offerings:
1) Visual Capture Only: If you already have an internal or external facilitator designing the meeting, I can capture the meeting graphically in real-time while the facilitator leads.
2) Visual Co-Facilitation: I can actively collaborate with the internal or external meeting facilitator to design and integrate visual thinking techniques into the agenda fabric – as well as co-facilitate the session. At the same time, I can serve as the visual facilitator and capture the meeting visually.
3) Transformational Meeting Package: This is a fabulous alternative to your standard strategy meeting. I can serve as sole meeting facilitator, as well as design the meeting from soup to nuts and integrate visual techniques into the agenda. Attendees dig in with pen and paper to express ideas and make connections.
Beyond the visual work, I also incorporate somatic exercises to clear minds, cultivate creative thought and embolden leaders. Somatic comes from the Greek word soma, which means “the body in its wholeness.” This is not just some New Agey practice – it produces real, productive results. Meetings can be stressful and in moments of stress, our bodies contract. That contraction often triggers a bodily response to protect us from danger. We unconsciously go into a fight, flight, or freeze response. This response shuts down the integrated, imaginative centers of our cognitive abilities – not the most productive mindset for a strategic planning session! The unchecked stress stifles our ability to respond skillfully, inhibits creative problem solving, and has damaging repercussions on our physical systems. Through somatic awareness and basic training, I help attendees find a centered presence, so they can access higher cognitive skills and communication capacities more often, and more consistently.
The result: Clearer communication, decision making, compassion, and resolve. Plus, training somatically expands flexibility and the ability to think on our feet in stressful situations – something every organization sorely needs their people to do in today’s chaotic times.
Contact me today to talk about the facilitation offering that best meets your and your organization’s needs.
Here is a partial list of clients who have benefited from my graphic facilitation services:
Department of Health and Human Services, WA State
Evergreen Treatment Services, REACH Program, Seattle, WA
King County WRIA 8 Environmental Summit, Seattle, WA
Pride Foundation, Seattle, WA
Providence Health & Services, WA
Seward Park and Audubon Environmental Learning Center, Seattle, WA