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The Skilled Facilitator

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Help groups deliver results with an updated approach to facilitation and consulting

The Skilled Facilitator: A Comprehensive Resource for Consultants, Facilitators, Trainers, and Coaches, Third Edition is a fundamental resource for consultants, facilitators, coaches, trainers, and anyone who helps groups realize their creative and problem-solving potential. This new edition includes updated content based on the latest research and revised models of group effectiveness and mutual learning. Roger M. Schwarz shows how to use the Skilled Facilitator approach to: boost improvement processes such as Six Sigma and Lean, create a psychologically safe learning environment for training, and help coaches work with teams and individuals in real-time. This edition features a new chapter that explains how to facilitate virtual teams using conferencing technology.

Facilitation skills are essential in many kinds of work, and if you are looking to bring your skills up to date it is critical that you rely on trusted information like the knowledge offered in this go-to reference.

  • Develop the facilitative mentality and skills that enable you to help groups get better results, even in the most challenging situations
  • Help groups achieve greater performances, stronger working relationships, and higher levels of individual well-being
  • Quickly develop productive and trusting work relationships with the groups you help
  • Establish the functions of your facilitative role
  • Implement a research-based, systematic approach to diagnose and intervene in groups and improve their performance and results

The Skilled Facilitator is a practical resource for corporate, government, non-profit, and educational practitioners, as well as graduate students in group-focused programs. This edition contains up-to-date material, based on recent studies, to help facilitators move beyond arbitrary tactics to utilize cutting edge, research-based strategies that improve group processes, relationships, mindsets, and outcomes.


ROGER SCHWARZ is an organizational psychologist and president and CEO of Roger Schwarz & Associates, Inc., a consulting firm that helps teams create fundamental change to get better results. He facilitates leadership teams and teaches, consults, coaches, and speaks on facilitation, leadership, and developing effective teams. He is the author of Smart Leaders, Smarter Teams and The Skilled Facilitator Fieldbook, and blogs for Harvard Business Review. Contact him at or find him on Twitter @LeadSmarter.

Texte du rabat

The third edition of The Skilled Facilitator by Roger Schwarz is the thoroughly revised and updated resource that has become the standard reference in the field. Well grounded in research and theory, this comprehensive and integrative approach to facilitation is designed for consultants, facilitators, coaches, trainers, and anyone who helps groups realize their creative and problem-solving potential. The Skilled Facilitator approach is a proven systems approach in which all the parts fit together and reinforce each other because they are based on the same set of core values, assumptions, and principles. This enables groups to achieve three results: stronger performance, more productive working relationships, and greater individual well-being.

While retaining the essential information from the previous editions, this new edition offers completely revised models of group effectiveness and mutual learning. Roger Schwarz highlights the roles of the consultant, coach, and trainer, and offers a detailed explanation of how to approach a situation depending on the facilitative role. In addition, there is a completely new chapter on facilitating virtual meetings using conferencing technology.

The Skilled Facilitator explores the foundational skills needed to work from a productive mindset, explains how to adopt the effective mutual learning approach, and includes ideas for determining the right role for the right situation. Experienced facilitators and those new to the profession will have the information needed to effectively observe a group, figure out what is happening that is limiting the group's effectiveness, and when to intervene to help the group become more successful. In addition, the author offers step-by-step instructions for reaching an agreement to work with a group and offers advice for deciding whether to work with a partner. Schwarz also includes suggestions for working internally within your organization.

The real-life stories and verbatim examples from the author reveal how to effectively apply the Skilled Facilitator approach in everyday practice and the pitfalls to avoid. The author explains how using this proven approach will strengthen improvement processes and create a psychologically safe learning environment for training. In addition, Schwarz provides help for coaches who work with teams and individuals in real-time.

Facilitation skills are essential in many kinds of work. For anyone who wants to hone their skills and bring them up-to-date, The Skilled Facilitator is their go-to reference.


Preface to the Third Edition xvii

What The Skilled Facilitator is About xvii

Who This Book is For xix

How the Book is Organized xix

Features of the Book xxii

What's Different in the Third Edition xxiii

Part One The Foundation 1

1 The Skilled Facilitator Approach 3

The Need for Group Facilitation 3

Most People Who Need to Facilitate Aren't Facilitators 3

Is This Book for You? 4

The Skilled Facilitator Approach 8

Experiencing the Skilled Facilitator Approach 10

Making the Skilled Facilitator Approach Your Own 11

Summary 12

2 The Facilitator and Other Facilitative Roles 13

Choosing a Facilitative Role 13

Basic and Developmental Types of Roles 23

Serving in Multiple Facilitative Roles 25

When It's Appropriate to Leave the Role of Facilitator 25

The Group is Your Client 28

What is Your Responsibility for the Group's Results? 29

Summary 33

3 How You Think is How You Facilitate: How Unilateral Control Undermines Your Ability to Help Groups 35

How You Think: Your Mindset as an Operating System 36

Two Mindsets: Unilateral Control and Mutual Learning 37

How You Think is Not How You Think You Think 37

The CIO Team Survey Feedback Case 38

The Unilateral Control Approach 41

Values of the Unilateral Control Mindset 41

Assumptions of the Unilateral Control Mindset 45

Unilateral Control Behaviors 46

Results of Unilateral Control 50

Give-Up-Control Approach 55

How Unilateral Control Reinforces Itself 55

How Did We Learn Unilateral Control? 56

Moving from Unilateral Control to Mutual Learning 57

Summary 58

4 Facilitating with the Mutual Learning Approach 59

The Mutual Learning Approach 59

Values of the Mutual Learning Mindset 61

Assumptions of the Mutual Learning Mindset 75

Mutual Learning Behaviors 77

Results of Mutual Learning 80

The Reinforcing Cycles of Mutual Learning 84

Are There Times When Unilateral Control is the Better Approach? 85

Summary 86

5 Eight Behaviors for Mutual Learning 87

Using the Eight Behaviors 87

Behavior 1: State Views and Ask Genuine Questions 89

Behavior 2: Share All Relevant Information 94

Behavior 3: Use Specific Examples and Agree on What Important Words Mean 97

Behavior 4: Explain Reasoning and Intent 99

Behavior 5: Focus on Interests, Not Positions 101

Behavior 6: Test Assumptions and Inferences 103

Behavior 7: Jointly Design Next Steps 114

Behavior 8: Discuss Undiscussable Issues 117

Learning to Use the Behaviors 119

Summary 120

6 Designing and Developing Effective Groups 121

How a Team Effectiveness Model Helps You and the Teams and Groups You Work With 122

The Difference between Teams and Groupsand Why It Matters 122

How Interdependence Affects Your Work with Teams and Groups 127

The Team Effectiveness Model 128

What's Your Mindset as You Design? 132

Team Structure, Process, and Context 133

Team Structure 134

Team Process 139

Team Context 143

Interorganizational Teams and Groups 150

Helping Design or Redesign a Team or Group 150

Summary 153

Part Two Diagnosing and Intervening with Groups 155

7 Diagnosing and Intervening with Groups 157

What You Need to Diagnose 158

What You Need to Intervene 160

The Mutual Learning Cycle 160

Summary 163

8 How to Diagnose Groups 165

Step 1: Observe Behavior 165

Step 2: Make Meaning 171

Step 3: Choose Whether, Why, and How to Inter...

Informations sur le produit

Titre: The Skilled Facilitator
Code EAN: 9781119064404
ISBN: 978-1-119-06440-4
Protection contre la copie numérique: Adobe DRM
Format: eBook (epub)
Editeur: Jossey-Bass
Genre: Management
nombre de pages: 408
Parution: 25.10.2016
Année: 2016
Auflage: 3. Aufl.
Sous-titre: Englisch
Taille de fichier: 4.4 MB