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Episode 010

May 8, 2019

010 – Design and facilitate successful strategy workshops – with Dirk Verburg

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    In this episode, I talk to Dirk Verburg, a management consultant and executive coach who has the mission to help leaders and management teams to implement their business strategies, business plans and strategic initiatives (such as important projects). We talk about how facilitators can structure workshops that enable participants to execute what they have committed to. We discuss how management teams can keep momentum when being back in their daily routines. In the show, Dirk shares interventions that will help the management team to follow through decided strategies and the role of leaders in that process. 

    Don’t miss the part when Dirk explains how he handles the double role of being a consultant and a facilitator of strategic projects. This conversation will inspire you to design strategy workshops which participants will feel motivated to carry on. 

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    Feeling inspired by the conversation in this episode? We can have our own – take a seat at my virtual table as part of a Mastermind Group.

    A huge thank you must go to SessionLab, the sponsor of Workshops Work. Claim your free two months of SessionLab Pro now – this deal is exclusive to Workshops Work listeners!

    Questions and Answers

    2:05 What is your story?

    3:20 What makes strategies and business plans fail? 

    3:49 Do participants in your workshops usually have a clear idea already how the strategy looks like?

    5:47 How would you approach such a discussion? Would it be a guided discussion with all team members around a table?

    6:34 How often does it happen that the team hears the same words but understands something different?

    7:12 If there is disagreement, how do you deal with the tension?

    8:03 How do you secure the buy-in?

    10:00 After you clarified disagreement and achieved buy-in, what is the next step to assure the follow-up after the workshop?

    11:52 What are the next steps toward execution?

    13:06 How do you collect the participants’ ideas regarding the specific translations of the strategy? And how do you make sure that everyone is contributing?

    15:08 When participants work in pairs: how do you build these and will they remain the same over the duration of the workshop?

    15:45 How do you get introverts to voice their opinions?

    16:45 How do you deal with the bunch of action items?

    19:28 How do you get the team to prioritize action items?

    21:04 How do you then divide the tasks for execution?

    22:16 Would that mean that the person who has an idea is in charge of the realization?

    27:06 How do you get the team members to follow through with their responsibilities?

    28:42 This sounds so easy in theory but the reality is that many managers have competing commitments. How do you coach the leader to assure progress? 

    34:22 How can you as a facilitator help the team to follow through and to make it fun to stick to the commitments?

    37:06 How do you walk the line between being a facilitator and being a consultant?

    38:49 How do you assure that the CEO doesn’t lose face in such situations?

    39:33 I like to ask my podcast guests for a DIY exercise that always works, no matter what. What would be your contribution?

    40:40 How do you finish the sentence: “Workshops fail if…”? 

    41:13 So what is a “sound facilitator”?

    42:37 If a listener fell asleep after a few minutes, how would you summarize our conversation?   


    Dirk’s business page: 

    Wemanity Netherlands – The host of the podcast recording! 

    Article by Dirk “Less is more” 

    Our sponsor Session Lab

    Connect to Dirk

    on LinkedIn