Tip #815: A Nightmare or Challenging Opportunity?

black man stressed

“Don’t watch the clock; do what it does. Keep going.” Sam Levenson

So, you create a highly participatory two-hour learning experience for an estimated 30 participants. The activities include pop ups, small group activities and role playing. Then you find out that 122 people have signed up!!! You’re going to have to watch the clock very carefully now!

The participant workbook, with all of those activities, has already been posted on the organization’s website, so you can’t change anything. What do you do???

First, you throw out the planned 10-minute break, because there is no way that 122 people are going to leave, use the limited facilities, and come back in that time period. You also know that you’ll need more time to debrief activities, so every minute counts.

Next, hoping that the participants will be seated at tables (you still haven’t heard back from the organizer yet and the workshop is tomorrow morning!) you plan how to apportion out the small group activities. There are worksheets with 8 items on the page and you want each table to work on only two items. Maybe you can divide the room into fourths and assign two different items to each quadrant. Then, you can debrief each activity by asking for volunteers from each quadrant. Yes, that might work.

Now, what do you do about the triad role play activity you’ve scheduled? Given the time constraints, you rethink the triad approach and decide that the role play should occur between two people at each table. The remaining table members can observe. The debrief will need to be concise, drawing again from volunteers. Perhaps check to see if the role play structure was successful and what their key learning was from the exercise.

What hasn’t been mentioned yet is that this is a first time co-facilitated workshop. You have no control over the other person’s time management. You hope and pray that you are both on the same page. The sticking point will be the lecturette your partner will be giving. Can he keep it to no more than 15 minutes?

And what about the person who is going to “introduce” us. Can we prompt her to be as brief as possible?

If you can feel the waves of stress rolling off me onto the page, you have some idea of my worry about this workshop. I’m telling myself that my reputation as a trainer is on the line. Gawk!

Wish us luck! I’ll let you know how it went in the next Tip.

May your learning be sweet.


Related Posts

Manage Your Holiday Stress Before It Manages You!

Saturday, December 10th from 11 AM to 2:30 PM CST

Over the river to grandmother’s house- we have an idea in our mind about how the holiday should be. But planning, shopping, baking, wrapping gifts, and preparing the house all take a toll. It’s easy to become anxious, worried about creating a perfect, memorable holiday. It doesn’t matter if it’s Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or some other winter holiday. There are traditions to keep, favorite foods to prepare, and decorations to put up. It’s exhausting.

Then there’s the actual day. You will want everyone to feel happy and get along, but you know that the stress of the day can easily result in overexcited and grumpy grandchildren and irritable adult children. You imagine that all the time and effort you put into creating a lovely day could end up being wasted and unappreciated.

Holidays are supposed to be a joyful time. Let us help you get clear about what is not worth worrying about- and give you practical coping strategies that will help you stay calm when things don’t go the way you want them to go.

Join us for this highly interactive half-day virtual workshop on how to Manage Your Holiday Stress Before It Manages You on Saturday, December 10th from 11 AM to 2:30 PM CST. Your investment is $120. We guarantee that you will have a much less stressful holiday.

It doesn’t have to be difficult to Deal with Difficult People.

In this course you will define the behavioral characteristics and underlying needs of difficult people, assess situations in which you effectively handled a difficult person, review five steps for handling difficult people Laurel & Associates now offers courses through Teachable. Learn at your own pace.
Popular Post

Share This Post