Once the need for facilitation has been identified, there's often confusion about who should take on the role. Should it be an internal staff member, a paid outsider, or the leader of the group?
In many organizations, facilitators are considered such an important resource as to warrant the development of a full-time, in-house cadre. These are paid organization development consultants who are available to help any team needing assistance.
Some organizations that are unable to maintain full-time facilitators maintain a group of part-time volunteer facilitators. These are employees who are interested in developing their group process expertise and who voluntarily take on facilitation assignments in other parts of their organization.
Whether they're full-time professionals or part of a volunteer group, internal facilitators enjoy several advantages over external ones, such as:
Despite the many benefits of using internal facilitators, there are also some drawbacks, such as: