S&G Meeting design Creates Dialog that Helps Chapters Implement New Initiative

Collaboration That Drove change and Increased Ownership

S&G believes that giving back to the community through in-kind donation of our services is important to changing the landscape, increasing dialog, and creating opportunities for all people, no matter their situation. It is always a win win situation when we help such organizations create the dialog and action they need to transform their work. This blog highlights a couple of these interactions and shows how S&G could be working more directly with your organization to create
similar, actionable, dialog.

The National Federation of the blind (NFB) has always carried an importance for us as a company, as this organization at local, state, and national levels, is helping blind people live the lives they want, specifically, addressing opportunities to overcome some of the challenges faced as a blind person.

Recently, Jeremy had the opportunity to help facilitate a session for the NFB of Virginia Project Rise program, giving students the ability to tap into their own wisdom, collaborate with each
other, and learn from leaders in the community in a way that inspired them and put them on a course for success. Read more about what we did and how they were successful in the April Issue of their newsletter.

Jeremy also recently worked with Brian Miller, the President of the NFBV Greater Alexandria Chapter, to help him design and facilitate a dialog for chapter members around the new Code of Conduct. The Code of Conduct, recently approved and rolled out by the National Federation of the Blind, (NFB), aims to help carry out the Federation’s vital mission by implementing this Code of Conduct which sets forth policies and standards that all members, especially Federation leaders, are expected to adopt and follow.

S&G worked with Mr. Miller to help him think about his design of the conversation, specifically helping him identify how he would present the new policy to the group, and how he might design a collaborative dialog that gave people the opportunity to process the new code and think about how they would choose to realize or implement the code within their chapter.

After presenting the Code of Conduct to the group and walking through the document, Mr. Miller
then broke people into small groups to discuss the following questions:
1. What does this code of conduct mean to each of us in this small group?
2. What are two things we can do as a chapter to ensure we are living this code of conduct?

Following the small group dialog, Mr. Miller then encouraged each small group to share out the
highlights of their discussion, giving all participants the ability to tap into the wisdom and
feedback in the room.

The Chapter is still deciding specific actions they plan to take and plan to have the board address as part of their strategic planning this summer. However, just a couple of the ideas shared around how to best implement the new code in the chapter included:
A. Ensuring that the code of conduct is prominently posted as part of chapter and affiliate documents, that it isn’t being tucked in a corner where no one would see it. It should be honored like a checklist that reminds doctors and nurses to rigorously wash their hands;
B. Establishing clear lines of informal and formal reporting of violations of the code and processes for redress. Chapter members and guests should know to whom to take their concerns or report problems, and know that action will be taken in a context of respect, support, and fairness.

“I was keen to try this collaborative approach as a way to introduce and achieved buy-in by our chapter to this new, important Code of Conduct. With S&G’s guidance, I not only developed and facilitated a collaborative agenda, but it was an approach that left our members feeling energized and more connected to the new initiative. Now, we have some clear direction from our members on things they want to do to ensure that the new Code of Conduct isn’t just a document that sits on a shelf but instead, is something that our chapter is living in our work.”

The approach to a meeting is so critical to the success of what any organization is trying to
accomplish. It is what results in someone feeling like a meeting was worth their time to attend. By
working with Mr. Miller to include a collaborative dialog, his chapter members increased their
ownership and buy-in to the new initiative, positioning them for the most success and the best
thinking on how they can ensure that the new Code of Conduct is lived in their everyday work.

Why not tap into the expertise of S&G to design your next meeting to be one that transforms your
work? Contact us for a consult.