In the United States, there are several recognized alternative dispute resolution methods. One of those methods is called facilitation. Facilitation, also known as group facilitation, is a process in which a neutral party works with the members of a group to help them get along and resolve disputes. This can be an excellent type of dispute resolution for school boards, company directors and other groups that need to continue working together but who have disputes that are causing conflict.
Usually, facilitators work with groups within organizations. The goal is to create a collaborative process where the group can talk, work together and eventually come to a consensus over whatever their issue is.
Facilitators may be internal or external, but the group must agree on them. All members get a say in who the facilitator can be. Facilitators don’t get to make decisions and will not contribute much in the way of substance to the discussion, but they will guide the group and make sure that each member understands and communicates clearly with others. As the facilitator leads the group process, they help the group stay on task, urge efficiency and creativity in finding solutions and can promote better productivity overall.
With facilitation, there are three core values. The idea is that the facilitator should provide valid information to the group first. Then, the members can make informed choices. Finally, they can commit to those choices, because they’re satisfied with the outcome.
With facilitation, you may be able to overcome disputes within your organization or between organizations. Our website has more on what you need to know about this method of dispute resolution.