Tools and consultancy to help people listen to each other and work together better
Home Contact me Ezine sign up Biography Search Business

Browse Site
Links & Resources
New Stuff
Free half hour
Appreciative Inquiry
Core Process
Discover your Purpose
Case examples
Effective Meetings
For Consultants and Trainers
For Individuals
For Managers
Free E-book on Developing People
Interfaith work
Building Peace
Installing Love
Love is on the way
Loving Politicians
Sowing hope in a time of crisis
Releasing Creativity
Previous Page Printable Version
Running groups

When running groups, you will often have the unexpected to deal with.

Here are some things I find helpful.

Start with positive things "What is working well?"

Explain again the background to the task in hand and your involvement so far. People are often anxious about new situations.

Keep an eye on the time and make sure everyone has a chance to contribute before time is up. If possible, give people equal time.

Put your own ideas in the pot at some stage, but do not defend them. This relaxes people.

Listen carefully and with concentration.

When you listen, look at the person speaking.

Summarise at intervals what the group and individuals are saying.

Try to get people to share their views and opinions rather than debate specific issues.

Do not argue even if you violently disagree with a point of view.

You can discuss serious topics lightly. A little humour helps.

When people find participating difficult and show it, it is probably not your fault. The reason is often in the past, a simple acknowledgement and warm attention will often help "You seem to finding today difficult, can I help?" Then just listen.

Your feelings are often a guide to what is going on in the group. It is useful to ask how people are feeling if you suddenly feel uncomfortable. It is probably a simple thing that you can easily fix.

Remember that however it appears, people, including you, are always doing the best they can. Blaming is not helpful.


Please use any of the buttons below to share this article more widely.


I would love to know what you think of these ideas:

Your email address (if you would like a response):

Your Comments:

Select "I Confirm" this is an anti-spam measure:


Contact me

Phone +44 (0)1707886553, or +44(0)7879861525 email or Skype nickheap

Using these materials
I am entirely happy for you to use or draw on any these materials in any way you think will be helpful. I am keen to have my work, and the work of the people I have learned from, used.  


The language on this site is correct UK English throughout. There are differences in spelling and meaning between UK and US English. The context should make the material understandable in the US.

Further Information

There are free articles, exercises, designs, book references and links to other sources about many aspects of personal, team, management and organisation development on this website. I will add other resources as I learn what you want.

View Nick Heap's profile on LinkedIn
Previous Page Back to Top Home Printable Version
home, site map, privacy policy, site design by ltd, © Nick Heap 2004