Issue 5 of Facilitate a Co-Creative Workshop
Everybody is different. Everybody has different way of communicating.
I remember the first time I spent a weekend with my in-laws. They waited for 48 hours before they spoke- they didn’t want to interrupt me. The problem is that I am used to being interrupted. That is how we spoke in my family, when I was growing up.
You need to make the workshop a place where everybody feels welcome.
To do this you can explain to people that they should not interrupt each other. Give each other space and time to talk. Ask follow-up questions, be curious! Even if it is blue sky thinking.
If you or any of the participants are known for interrupting or jumping to conclusions (instead of listening): hand out notepads and ask them kindly to take notes instead of just speaking out loud. And then when its his or her turn to speak, they can look at their notes and speak up. This could really change the way they interact and help them, not only for the sake of this workshop. If this is not helpful, don't be shy. As a facilitator you have the power and mandate to ask a participant to kindly wait on his or her turn. Do it gently but in a very clear way, so it is noticed.