Look Who’s Facilitating Briefings!

Mar 07, 2022

Over the last decade, many Briefing Programs have been excited to roll out the benefits of facilitation, but they have struggled to find the bandwidth to support it. Purposeful facilitation requires being fully present in the briefing and intentionally intervening to pose questions and make links to customer comments. Each fully facilitated briefing is a multi-hour commitment away from planning other briefings and impacts overall briefing program capacity. 

As programs pivoted to virtual briefings, it became the norm to have someone from the Briefing Program supporting that engagement – communicating virtual protocol, watching the chat panel, making sure Discussion Leaders were on the call and ready to present. With that time now committed, some Programs have looked to increase the value the Briefing Manager provides since they’re already in the briefing. Elevating their skills to include facilitation increases their contribution to the briefing and makes them a full business partner to the account team.
Businesswoman making presentation to colleagues in a conference roomBusinesswoman making presentation to colleagues in a conference room
Some programs have looked outside the intact Briefing team for help. They’ve taken a different approach, training and engaging employees from across the business to facilitate briefings. The Facilitator role suits anyone who has a desire to hear from and engage with customers. High potential talent looking to gain more direct customer experience, product and vertical industry managers, designers and developers from R&D, and titles from across the Marketing organization are facilitating briefings today. Some technology companies have found that using Facilitators from a variety of backgrounds visibly manifests their support for Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion.

Facilitation is a trainable skill. Being a good Facilitator requires keen observation skills, active listening skills, strong communication skills, and self-confidence. It does not require technical or product knowledge. They’re connection experts, not content experts!