Finding Your Voice In Facilitating Productive Conversations

July 1, 2013

Read Jennifer's contribution as an expert in the article Finding Your Voice In Facilitating Productive Conversations in The Leading Teacher Journal.


Learning to lead a meeting is more than just managing agendas. It means reading the group’s mood and stepping in at the right moment to turn attention back to productive work, according
to Jennifer Abrams, author of Having Hard Conversations (Corwin, 2009).

A good facilitator, Abrams said, sets the tone and can “change the whole day” for a teaching team meeting. She recalls a moment from her time as a district staff developer for new teachers. It was 4 p.m., she said, and the teachers were tired after their workday. She began to hand out packets of information. She got to one young woman who seemed as though she was in a particularly bad mood. As she handed the woman the packet, the woman shoved it back and said, “I totally know all this already.”

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