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               Seven Killer Ground Rules

           for Effective Meeting Facilitation

 
 Mary Lee Gannon, CAE
Your Life/Career/Business Reinvention Strategist
 
  
Mary Lee Gannon is president of  StartingOverNow.com
 - a coaching and consulting firm that helps people and organizations reinvent to enjoy the freedom that comes from success. With more than 17 years of experience as a CEO of organizations with up to $26 million in assets, Mary Lee helps leaders develop business strategy and fulfilled employees who know how to make work fun and productive. 
  
She is a graduate of Duquesne University's Professional Coaching Program, an alumnus of the Harvard Medical School and McLean Hospital Coaching in Medicine & Leadership Conference and a Certified Association Executive. 
 
Mary Lee's personal turnaround came as a stay-at-home mother with four children under seven-years-old who endured a divorce that took she and the children from the country club life to public assistance from where she earned success to support her family.   
  
Are you:
* An entrepreneur in a flat business
* Chilled from divorce
* Idle in your career
* Burdened by a job loss
* Void of life purpose
* Missing loving relationships
* Afraid that "empty nest" means "empty future"
* In need of executive presence
* Unable to "just move on"

Clients, across the US, are working hard but not smart because there is a lack of clarity, vision, goals, optimized work environment, accountability or good work/life balance in place to produce exceptional results. So fear, bureaucracy, personal agendas and cynicism have grabbed hold when what they want is rekindled passion to create the best product or service in their industry, be the provider of choice and be fulfilled by a lifestyle friendly business.
  
Services: Reinvention Coaching for Life-Career-Business / Strategic Planning / Board Development / Healthcare / Management Consulting / Public Relations / Meeting Facilitation / Leadership / Productivity  
  
  
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Mary Lee Ganon is Recognized 

Michelle Wright of WTAE-TV, Mary Lee Gannon and Beth Caldwell of PPW - Women of Integrity Award 

Mary Lee Gannon is awarded the 2012
"Woman of Integrity" award by Pittsburgh
Professional Women on December 1st at Le Mont.  Awardees are women of distinction who have balanced career and civic responsibility, who share their success by mentoring others and
supporting their communities.  Pictured
here with Michelle Wright of WTAE-TV
and Beth Caldwell of PPW.

The Book

"Starting Over" 

Mary Lee's first book illustrates her personal turnaround as a stay-at-home mother, with four children under seven-years-old, who endured a divorce that took she and the children from the country club life to public assistance. From there, within a short time, she worked to the level of CEO, directing three hospital foundations over the last 16 years each with assets of up to $26 million.  

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I've participated in hundreds of meetings throughout my career and seen varied leadership styles, behaviors, and escape plans. Good facilitation of a meeting involves three key components:

 

 Analysis - Sometimes meeting facilitators jump to create a debate over issues of content before an appropriate process is in place. Example: A group may be discussing whether or not to fundraise for a specific purpose when they have not yet decided if it is good time to fundraise at all. It is also good to identify if someone involved in the meeting has a specific intent or personal interest in a specific outcome and define that upfront.

 

 Communication - The facilitator must listen, summarize and reframe. Typically they do not advance an opinion but ask questions to stimulate new ideas. The facilitator posts ideas on a flip chart or post board so that nothing is lost and so that later ideas may be voted on, prioritized or put in appropriate categories. If the topic is getting off track or moving in a negative or unproductive direction, it is the facilitator's job to redirect the focus back to the purpose of the meeting.

 

Familiarity with Process Models - Meetings whereby the process is to vote on an issue before moving forward are becoming less popular. Today many meetings operate with the consensus process whereby nothing can move forward unless everyone is in agreement that they can support the issue. This gives everyone less angst about the issue moving forward without appropriate consensus from everyone. Underlying attitudes of cooperation, support, trust, respect, and good communication are essential for a productive meeting and for consensus building.

 

 In order for any project to succeed it must be set up to do so from the start. This concept applies to meetings as well. Ground Rules should be shared with a group ahead of time so that everyone understands the culture of the meeting before you move into the purpose of the meeting, agenda and desired outcomes. Typical meeting ground rules revolve around start and end times, no interruptions such as cell phones or email etc. I say establish those as "Logistical Standards." Additionally, I encourage clients to establish "Killer Ground Rules" such as the ones listed below so as to encourage a safe environment of high energy, idea creation, openness and forward thinking. The reason I call them "Killer" ground rules is because these rules "kill" the negative stereotypical images associated with typical meetings.

 

Seven Killer Ground Rules for Effective Meetings

 

1.) Share all relevant information.

 

2.) Everyone has a chance to speak without interruption.

 

3.) No idea is a bad idea. All ideas and opinions will be respected.

 

4.) All ideas and opinions will be encouraged to survive the "Relevant Test":

a.) You've stated the reasoning behind the idea/opinion

b.) You've given specific example

c.) You've shared any personal intention or benefit to you

 

5.) All participants are invited to ask questions of an existing point of view.

 

6.) The focus should be on goals, not solutions or personal intention. A solution is a strategy of how you meet your goals. The group will create solutions to an agreed upon mutual goal. (The best people at creating innovative strategies don't allow themselves to draw an opinion or solution until they have gathered all of the information.)

 

7.) Before the meeting ends, the group will jointly design next steps that demonstrate the level of commitment necessary to succeed.

 

Effective meetings require planning, a healthy culture, a purpose and good leadership. Apply these mindful tips to create your leadership signature.

 

Read Mary Lee's mindful tips: Change Your Profile
  

Get FREE the first 20-pages of Mary Lee's book Reinvent You - From Welfare to CEO.

 
 
  
For Your Next Meeting or Conference: Speaker and Corporate Training Sheet
 
  
Watch Mary Lee's NEW Corporate Training Video: "Effective Negotiations."
  
Watch Mary Lee's Expert Panel VideoLife/Career Reinvention Coach Mary Lee Gannon appears on a panel of top coaches at Rivers Casino for Pittsburgh Professional Women here showing what you do when you feel overwhelmed and fear failure.
  
Mary Lee Gannon, CAE is an award winning Certified Coach and Leadership Impact Strategist and president of StartingOverNow.com - an executive coaching firm that helps wake up from autopilot (your employee engagement, business metrics, productivity, organizational vision and purpose, sales doubt, innovation, executive presence, conflict resolution, personal relationships) to your unique leadership impact so that you can transform the world instead of just flying around it. She is the popular author of two books, her latest Reinvent You - From welfare to CEO was just released. With more than 17 years of experience as a CEO of organizations with up to $26 million in assets, Mary Lee helps leaders develop personal and executive strategy. She is a graduate of Duquesne University's Professional Coaching Program, a Certified Association Executive, a qualified member of International Coach Federation, an alumnus of the Harvard Medical School and McLean Hospital Coaching in Medicine & Leadership Conference and a Leadership Pittsburgh XXV graduate. She is the recipient of the Woman of Integrity Award by Pittsburgh Professional Women and the Leading Lady Distinction by Oakland Catholic. She's been featured in Money Magazine, NPR, Yahoo.com, U.S. News and World Report, Monster.com, msn.com, Forbes.com, CareerBuilder.com. Her personal turnaround came as a stay-at-home mother with four children under seven-years-old who endured a divorce that took her and her children from the country club life to public assistance from where she reinvented her life to support her family. Her column appears in the Pittsburgh Business Times and she presents regularly to national audiences on leadership, entrepreneurship, executive presence, coaching versus managing, divorce and career turnaround. Read testimonials from her clients. Both of her books: Reinvent you - From Welfare to CEO and Starting Over are available in bookstores, from online booksellers or on her web site at www.StartingOverNow.com  
  
         
  
Mary Lee is a featured executive coach in MONEY MAGAZINE. 
  
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