chapter  1.9
4 Pages

Skilful challenge

Skilful challenge builds trust in a group, promotes openness and even gives permission for people to bring more of themselves into their work. Our task as facilitator is to give people permission to express their fears and anxieties and provide a safe enough environment into which these can become included in the working agenda. A common mistake made by facilitators is that they will often see difficult behaviour as a personal slight. This can then lead to power struggles and a loss of confidence by the facilitator in his or her abilities. It can also lead to the team or group losing confidence in how they are going to achieve their task. When we are challenged or threatened we typically experience distress. This raises our adrenaline levels and brings into play the well-known fight/flight mechanism: Flight defences are passive and are characterized by avoidance; and Fight responses involve attacking as a means of protection.