This week we consider how outstanding facilitators create connected communities.

This is done via three main strands: The first being establishing a shared language and ethos. This commonly draws on whole-school values, a shared pedagogical language, and a culture of coaching and communicating in way which is both empathetic and future-facing, but it will also manifest from the boundaries, energy and expectation created by the facilitator within the facilitated space whether this is whole-staff sessions, team meetings, or smaller groups such as the Outstanding Teacher Programme or Power of Coaching.

Secondly, galvinising participants to harness their collective wisdom allows the group to maximise their thinking. The collaborative journey taken by the group, whether long or short, will be effective because of this galvanisation. The facilitator sets the pace, the future-facing mindset, the desire for sustainable change, and inspires others to meaningful, purpose-driven action through activities, challenges, sharing profound realisations, and using skilled questioning to probe thinking and deepen reflection.

Finally, teachers, leaders and colleagues will be aligned in their values. The facilitator encourages and promotes these values in the activities, discussions, and challenges that are set. This shared direction, and the agreed view of ‘what really matters’ and ‘where are we going?’ is also promoted by the use of questioning, and the level of challenge created in a space, which steadily becomes a honed and focused atmosphere where the commitment to professional change, and the desire for action, is palpable, and exists in the ‘hearts and minds’ of all participants.

What would be your WWW for the connected communities you have created or been part of? And what would be your EBI for driving this forwards in your setting? Grab a post-it and note these down now, followed by one thing you will do this week to move towards your goal.