Guy W. Wallace’s PACT Facilitation Guidelines: # 12 – Assign Parking Lot Valets
I call these “The 12 Rules and Guidelines of Proactive/Confrontational Facilitation for the PACT Processes for T&D.”
1. Go Slow to Go Fast. 2. Be Declarative. 3. Write Stuff and Post It. 4. Be Redundant by Design. 5. Use the Four Key Communications Behavior Types. 6. Review and Preview. 7. Write It Down and Then Discuss It. 8. Use Humor. 9. Control the Process and the Participants. 10. Be Legible on the Flip Chart. 11. Beware of Group-Think. 12. Assign Parking Lot Valets.
The 12th and last of these is covered in more detail in the following text.
Read them. Use them. Experiment with them. Make them your own.
12. Assign Parking Lot Valets
In a very structured process, it’s a good idea to use a “parking lot” for issues that may not be timely. Post a flip chart on the wall and write “Issue Parking Lot” or something similar on the top, and then add things that are premature, that we don’t intend to address in the meeting, or that we don’t want to forget.
At the end of the meeting, or sooner as appropriate, address them and close them out. Those that remain open will have to be addressed and resolved some other time and some other way.
I usually have two parking lots, one for open issues and one for closed issues, so everyone can see progress in addressing those that can be addressed in our meeting.
But I hate being the parking valet! It seems that I spend so much time parking everyone’s issues that I run myself ragged from one flip chart to another.
So I’ve hit on this device―an improvement if you will. We hand out “stickies” and ask everyone to jot down their own issues and self-park them. On the 1st parking lot – for OPEN Issues.
Then at every review/preview checkpoint, we review what’s new in the open parking lot, and we take the time to see what can be parked in the other lot. Because it has been covered – and we test to see if that is true first. And then as appropriate – we move the “item” to the CLOSED Issues parking lot. I do those myself – or sometimes call on someone else to do that from that side of the room.
And of course – you can do this via electronic means for distance meetings – depending on the “tool/system” that you use!
It gets your group more involved, makes them articulate their issues themselves, and gets them out of their seats on occasion, which may be the most beneficial aspect of the self-parking lot concept.
So – assign everyone as a valet for the 1st parking lot!
– Sourced and edited/embellished from Appendices C of: “lean-ISD” – a book by Guy W. Wallace – published in 1999 and made available as a free 404 page PDF in 2007 at http://www.eppic.biz/
Book cover by the late Geary A. Rummler.
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