White Maple Consulting specialises in facilitation. We have experience of designing and facilitating meetings and conferences in the UK and globally across the commercial, government and not-for-profit sectors.
Please note that we moved offices
on 1 December 2011. See our new address and contact details at Contact Us
Our facilitators impartially guide groups and organisations through the processes of developing a shared view of issues, thinking creatively, evaluating options, making choices and decisions, and committing to action. The role can range from designing and facilitating a single event (e.g. a meeting, workshop or conference) through to providing guidance through an extended process. Our facilitators can help with:
- Devising strategies
- Improving performance and quality
- Planning projects
- Agreeing priorities and action
- Building teams
- Developing effective working relationships
- Forming partnerships and alliances
- Negotiating mergers
- Solving problems
- Resolving differences
With White Maple Consulting, facilitation typically has four steps. Logistical and some other activities (e.g. preparation and distribution of meeting notes) are often fulfilled by clients, although we are very happy to provide a one-stop service. We can also train in-house facilitators.
- Meet to understand your requirements
- Learn about background and context
- Agree the design process and budgets
- Consult participants and others, as appropriate
- Draft and agree meeting objectives and process
- Arrange venue, facilities and logistics
- Plan information required and inputs/presentations
- Brief participants and any presenters
- Set-up the venue and check facilities
- Facilitate your meeting to achieve your agreed outputs
- Confirm actions arising
- Plan post-meeting communication
- Meeting evaluation
- Preparation and distribution of meeting notes
- Assisting communication with other stakeholders
- Advice and support on issues and actions arising
Some of the benefits that you can gain from working with our experienced facilitators include:
- Tools and techniques for analysis
- Focussed discussions
- New ideas and perspectives
- Sensitive issues surfaced
- Impartial challenge
- Clarity about issues and options
- Creation of consensus
- Efficient meetings
- Faster decision-making
- Commitment to action
Here are a few examples of unsolicited written feedback from clients (more client feedback can be found in Client Feedback section):
Strategy development: “Thank you for the most professional manner in which you facilitated the meeting. It really helped the flow of discussion and proved extremely effective.”
Leadership conference: “The success of the conference was in no small part thanks to your wise counsel in the planning stages and in the excellent facilitation.”
Partnership meeting: “Thank you most sincerely for the very valuable day…the presence of a disinterested guide gave our discussions a focus which they so often lack.”
Team development: “Many thanks indeed for running an excellent Senior Management Team workshop.”
Communications workshop: “Seeing you and Bob Empson in the canteen reminds me to comment on his really excellent stewardship of the meeting. It was a real pleasure to watch a professional at work! Best meeting I’ve been to for ages. I feel we achieved something.”
Strategic alliance: “We were all really impressed…it made us realise how important it is to have such a meeting chaired by someone with no axe to grind.”
Government department: stakeholder workshops
Design and facilitation of a series of workshops with the department's staff and with representatives of key external stakeholders to identify policy issues and options.
The outputs formed the basis for a number of important initiatives.
Firm of solicitors: strategy meeting
The Partners had not been able to agree on how to tackle a number of strategic and management issues. Following interviews with all the partners a one-day meeting was facilitated. 30 and 100-day action plans were agreed and implemented.
NHS agency: staff conferences
We designed and facilitated staff conferences for an NHS agency. About 250 staff attended each conference.
Government agency: communications workshop
Facilitated at a workshop of representatives from various divisions to review the agency's web site and its development strategy.
Trade association: strategy workshops
Designed and facilitated at annual strategy review workshops of a leading tradea association.
Global financial services firm: change programme
Facilitated and advised a multi-functional internal team tasked with migrating a traditional asset management business into a new private banking brand. We also worked with the team to formulate an internal communications programme in support of the launch of the new concept. The project was delivered on time.
Government department: stakeholder consultation
Facilitation at a series of workshops with key stakeholders (governmental and others) regarding the implementation of key aspects of a White Paper, including the establishing of a regional network. Facilitated at the first meeting of the network to agree key governance issues.
Charities: trustees and management awaydays
We have facilitated at numerous joint trustee/management strategy awaydays.
Firm of solicitors: partner strategy retreat
For a top 100 firm, we designed and facilitated a partners' strategy retreat and also a conference of all fee earners with the objective of enhancing understanding of and commitment to a new strategy for the partnership.
International trade association: change programme
Facilitated at a series of 5 day international workshops to gain commitment from staff in over 80 countries towards the association's new commercial strategies. The workshops were held in Singapore, Sydney, South Africa, Stockholm and Prague.
Large charity: working group
Chaired and facilitated a working group, reporting to the board of trustees, to review and make recommendations regarding the charity's strategic and operational planning and independent assurance regime.
Government agency: staff workshop
Designed and facilitated a staff workshop with the theme communications with stakeholders.
Solicitors: staff conferences
We have designed and facilitated a series of annual staff conferences for a firm of solicitors. These have ranged from c.30 to over 120 staff.