Preparation - Understand Purpose, Rearrange the Furniture, Supplies, Tools, Materials, Design the Experience, Contextualise the Moment, The Role of the Facilitator.
Commencing - Invitation, Arrival, Who’s in the Room, Who’s NOT in the Room, Culture, Protocol, Expectations.
Underway - Where are we on the Map, The Art of Noticing, Hearing Diverse Voices, Counter Cognitive Bias, Balancing Divergent / Convergent, Working with Scope, Pacing and Timing, Managing the Attention Economy, Facilitation Interventions.
Concluding - Outcomes & Next Steps, Reporting & Harvesting, Turning Discussion into Action, It Ain’t Over Til It’s Over
Ongoing Practice - Continuous Improvement, Distributed Facilitation / Self-facilitation, The Art of Being Facilitated, Culture Change.
Loomio is made by facilitators, and that plays a huge role in how it has been designed. This guide is about revealing more of that context, and translating facilitation concepts from the offline space to the online space.
More about this guide
Whether employed by a professional facilitator, people peer-facilitating each other, or a group that has no awareness of facilitation at all, Loomio’s essential function is to mediate and support group communication toward a desired outcome. In other words, facilitation.
Loomio is groupware:
Collaborative software, or groupware, is designed to help people involved in a common task achieve their goals. One of the earliest definitions of collaborative software is “intentional group processes plus software to support them.” – Wikipedia
There is a huge body of knowledge, best practice, and tradition in both in-person facilitation and online moderation, but the art and science of their intersection is only just emerging. This is the specific space where Loomio strives to excel.
About the author
Hi! I’m Alanna.
I’m one of the founders of Loomio, and I’ve been thinking deeply about how it works from a facilitation perspective since the beginning. I am not a seminal facilitation expert; I consider myself only a beginner in this craft that one could spend a lifetime honing.
What I can offer is help translating between the offline and online spaces, as a practitioner in both. I’ve facilitated a lot of groups who use Loomio, and learned from their experiences.
You can find out more about me on my website.
I’m only one person, with one perspective and approach to facilitation, when there are myriad approaches. I’ve tried to bring in a couple other facilitator’s voices here, including Rich from Loomio and Silvia from EXP.