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Facilitator’s Guide to Participatory Decision-Making (3rd Ed.)

The third edition (2014) of this groundbreaking book continues to advance its mission to support groups to do their best thinking. It demonstrates that meetings can be much more than merely an occasion for solving a problem or creating a plan. Every well-facilitated meeting is also an opportunity to stretch and develop the perspectives of the individual members, thereby building the strength and capacity of the group as a whole.

FacilitatorsGuide-coverThis edition features:

  • 60 pages of brand new skills and tools
  • Many new case examples
  • A new chapter on teaching a group about group dynamics
  • The section on Classic Facilitator Challenges has doubled in size
  • Major expansion and reorganization of advanced sections of the book

This fully updated edition of Facilitator’s Guide to Participatory Decision-Making guides readers through the struggle and the satisfaction of putting participatory values into practice, helping them to fulfill the promise of effective group decision-making. With previous editions already embraced by business and community leaders and consulting professionals around the world, this new book is even more insightful and easy to use.

The 2007 edition and the original 1996 edition were considered must-have training manuals and sourcebooks for facilitators, managers and leaders who want to encourage full participation, promote mutual understanding, and help groups build inclusive, sustainable agreements. It presented more than 200 valuable tools and skills and placed them in the context of a lucid, realistic model of the dynamics of group decision making. The Facilitator’s Guide to Participatory Decision-Making is designed to help facilitators improve their diagnostic judgment and increase their repertoire of methods and skills for supporting groups to make sounder, saner decisions. By Sam Kaner with Lenny Lind, Catherine Toldi, Sara Fisk and Duane Berger.

The folks at Community At Work feel that the new edition is a huge improvement over the original edition, which was published in 1996. Completely revised and updated, the second edition is loaded with new tools and techniques. New stuff includes:

  • Two powerful new chapters on agenda design
  • A full section devoted to reaching closure
  • More than twice as many tools for handling difficult dynamics
  • 70 brand-new pages and over 100 pages significantly improved

Here are a few of the reviews from the back cover…

“This book is an outstanding resource for tackling complex community and business challenges. We’ve used it both at the City of Denver and at the State of Colorado. I keep a copy on my desk for easy reference.”
 – Roxane White, chief of staff for Governor John Hickenlooper, State Capitol, Denver, Colorado

“Sam Kaner is one of the world’s leading experts on collaboration. His grasp of the challenges and dilemmas of collaboration is superb, as are his models and methods for facilitating complex processes. Clearly written and wonderfully illustrated, this book makes difficult issues understandable and provides sound, practical guidance.”
 – Sandy Schuman, editor, Creating a Culture of Collaboration and founding editor, Group Facilitation: A Research and Applications Journal

“NCDD has long listed the Facilitator’s Guide as one of the best-of-the-best resources for practitioners. The field of public engagement has been deeply influenced by this seminal book.”
 – Sandy Heierbacher, director and co-founder, National Coalition of Dialogue and Deliberation (NCDD)

“In cross-functional environments where diverse perspectives are intentionally brought together to produce high-quality thinking, a highly skilled facilitator can add great value, and Sam Kaner is one of the best. The Facilitator’s Guide provides a full set of models and tools to enable an organization to reap the benefits of a well facilitated, participatory decision-making process. Having seen Sam’s methods in action, I can attest to their power and effectiveness.”
 – Pierre Omidyar, founder and chairman, eBay and Omidyar Network

About the Author

Sam Kaner, Ph.D. is regarded as one of the nation’s leading experts on consensus decision-making. His corporate clients have included Hewlett-Packard, PricewaterhouseCoopers, VISA International, Charles Schwab and Company, and many other Fortune 500 companies. His public sector clients have included the California Supreme Court, the March of Dimes, Special Olympics, Annie E. Casey Foundation and many schools, community-based organizations and government agencies. Sam is the founder of the consulting firm Community At Work, and he has been its Executive Director since 1986.

Resource Link: www.communityatwork.com/book.html (or on Amazon here)

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