Experience. Renewal. Celebration

I recently celebrated 30 years of my facilitation business and coincidentally recertified as a Certified Professional Facilitator with the International Association of Facilitators (IAF). These milestones got me thinking about experience, renewal, and celebration. I hope my musings help anyone starting or continuing a facilitator career.

Experience is defined as:

➡ The process of gaining knowledge or skills from doing, seeing, or feeling things, or something that happens which affects you (Cambridge Dictionary).

➡ The knowledge and skill gained through doing something for a period of time (Oxford Learner’s Dictionary).

I qualify as someone who has done something for a long time! During my recertification, key aspects of my facilitation career stood out:

😀 The joy of feeling “I’m where I’m meant to be” when facilitating a group — this hasn’t changed in 30 years.

🤗 My deep belief in the wisdom of the group; knowing that if I invite them into a thoughtfully designed conversation and then, “get out of their way,” magic happens.

🙂 The value of a solid foundation of philosophy, beliefs, methods, and tools, thanks to the Technology of Participation and the Skilled Facilitator creators.

💡 The importance of learning new methods and integrating them into my practice.

😍 The lessons, challenges, and happiness from participants, clients, colleagues, and co-facilitators.

👩‍❤️‍👩  The support and love of my family and friends.

What has my experience given me?

✅ Confidence in design and execution: I build on past experiences, even though I still get nervous. Knowing I’ve “been here” before and succeeded helps; plus, I learn from my mistakes.

✅ A treasury of methods: I have books, files, and designs at my fingertips. And contact with trusted colleagues!

✅ Resilience in business: After the 9/11 attacks in 2001, my business almost disappeared, and during the COVID-19 pandemic, I renewed my business online. During times of low work, I am reassured by my survival of these events.

Here’s to renewal!

✔ Wisdom doesn’t require years of experience. I renew by learning from new facilitators who bring fresh perspectives to methods I’ve used for decades. It’s fun to see everything old become new again!

✔ I also renew through co-facilitation, taking courses, reading books, listening to podcasts, and engaging with colleagues.

Celebrating facilitation 👏 💯

I’m thrilled to see facilitation becoming more recognized as an essential skill in personal and professional settings. In 2016, I certified with IAF for the first time, which I did not see as necessary in the first 20 years of my business. In the last decade, more clients have inquired about my certification and used it as a selling feature with their leadership teams. This speaks to the growing awareness and value of the facilitation profession.

I have so much to be grateful for and celebrate.

Experience. Renewal. Celebration
Tagged on: