Design for a Team Briefing Session
The manager welcomes people, gives the background to the session, explains that the objectives are to present information about what is happening in the firm, listen to your comments and to test the approach to team briefing. Your comments and ideas are important.
The manager presents the information
Pairs take five minutes each way to explore, What do you think of what you have heard? What else would you like to know? What question would you like to ask?
Encourage each person has a chance to talk and think and that their partner listens well. Shy people may need a quiet time to formulate their thoughts.
Collect up comments and questions from the audience and write these on a flip-chart so important ideas are not lost.
Summarise and respond to the ideas. Answer questions. Try very hard not to be defensive. Ask people for their concerns. It is more usually more valuable to listen sympathetically than to give a quick answer.
Go round the group and ask everyone
- What have you learned today?
- What have you enjoyed about the process today?
- How could we improve it next time?
- What will you do because of today?
Set the time for the next meeting.
Why this approach?
- People said they wanted more relevant and local information.
- They wanted to get a response from their managers.
- The briefers worried that they did not get much back from their people.
- People take in information that they can relate to what they already know. They prefer language they can understand.
- Most people find it easier to talk one person than a group. When you have talked to one person and been listened to, you have more confidence to talk to a group.
- The method helps everyone to contribute. Shy people often have good ideas.
The format meets all these needs. You can also use it for more general communication.