As with any process, the design process is deliberately designed with time in mind. When you’re aiming for a goal, you’re doing so with an eye on a specific date and time; you wouldn’t ideate or validate forever. As a facilitator, it’s your job to manage the timing of the process.
To keep everyone on the same page when you’re working together, create an agenda using a flip chart and big permanent markers, and stick (or tape) it to the wall. Keep to the times and don’t skip any breaks. You’ll find that as people get more used to this structure, they’ll deliver better results together.
While there are always big thinkers and strategic thinkers in groups, most often, the same people who think big and strategic thoughts are also stuck in the proverbial mud of the current operational execution engine. Of course, it’s important to have people like this on board. But, this often becomes a challenge for the facilitator to steer the team forward into the expansive waters of strategic options.
This is especially true in big companies, where a constant balance exists between “let’s move to action” and “let’s make sure we are acting on the right things.” This requires the facilitator and the participants to be able to bounce quickly between the big picture and the detail. This is one reason securing a core team, agreeing to a charter, and being transparent throughout the design process are so important. This is where the real facilitation ...