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Lemons to Lemonade
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Lemons to Lemonade
Resolving Problems in Meetings, Workshops, and PLCs



June 2013 | 200 pages | Corwin
"Garmston and Zimmerman have written a book that is the perfect blending of theory and research with very practical, user-ready techniques for facilitating meetings AND for dealing with specific challenges. I would LOVE to see this kind of training offered for administrators!"

—David Chojnacki, Executive Director

Near East South Asia Council of Overseas Schools

No more unproductive meetings! The complete guide to getting the most out of every gathering of educators.

Do your meetings spiral angrily out of control? Or simply not make the most of the participants' talents? Lemons to Lemonade by Robert J. Garmston and Diane P. Zimmerman is the playbook you need to promote civil, productive discourse, detailing:

How to prepare yourself to facilitate the discussion and keep it on task

Best practices for squashing conflict without wounding pride

Methods for dealing with "frowners," "interrupters," "subject-changers," "humorists," and other time-waster types

With this book, you will never waste another opportunity for problems to get solved by the combined powers of capable minds.

 
About the Authors
 
Introduction
To Intercede Is To Lead

 
Why Read This Book

 
Problem Locater

 
 
Chapter 1. The Novice to Expert Journey
We All Begin as Novices

 
Accomplished Means Competent

 
Uninformed

 
Novice

 
Proficient

 
Accomplished

 
Highly Accomplished Expert

 
Proficiency Scale

 
Attributes of the Expert

 
 
Chapter 2. Building Personal Confidence
Connecting Mind and Body

 
1. Breathe

 
2. Try Progressive Relaxation

 
3. Walk

 
4. Center Yourself Physically

 
5. Over Prepare. Over Prepare

 
6. Address the Stress of Conflict

 
7. Check Your Negative Predictions at the Door

 
8. When Stuck, Move

 
9. Maintain Your Identity as a Facilitator

 
10. Monitor Your Need to Know

 
11. Take Care to Arrange the Room

 
12. Create a "Circle of Excellence"

 
 
Chapter 3. Intervention Principles
Principles Guide Decisions

 
1. Compassion

 
2. Precise Language

 
3. Congruence

 
4. From Low to High Risk

 
 
Chapter 4. Deciding to Intervene
Establish Meeting Standards

 
Set Working Agreements

 
Evaluate Working Agreements

 
Clarify Tasks

 
Intervene as Necessary

 
Deciding to Intervene with an Ad Hoc Group

 
Intervening Preemptively

 
1. Is the Agenda Relevant?

 
Plan the Beginning

 
Cluster Reports

 
Mix Strategies

 
2. Is Engery Waning?

 
Around the Room and Back Again

 
Card Partners

 
The Card Stack and Shuffle

 
3. Are Emotions Ratcheting Up?

 
First Turn/Last Turn

 
4. Might the Group be Heading Toward Conflict?

 
Grounding

 
Deciding When to Intervene

 
1. Is Intervening Important?

 
2. Am I the Best Person to Intervene?

 
3. Are My Observations Accurate?

 
4. Will It Be Quick or Take Time?

 
5. Can the Group Learn From It?

 
 
Chapter 5. Common Group Issues
Getting Attention

 
Attention First

 
Refocusing

 
Common Signal

 
Physical Proximity

 
Verbal Proximity

 
Redirecting Engagement

 
Join a Whole Table That is Off Task

 
Refocus Serial Storytelling

 
When Workflow is Hampered

 
Address a Refusal to Follow Directions

 
Assist with Difficulty Transitioning

 
Address Uneven Finishes with Group Work

 
Engergize a Quiet Group

 
Managing Your Emotions

 
Positional Thinking--Power Struggles

 
From Positions to Interest

 
 
Chapter 6. Managing Common Challenges
Low Engagement

 
Knitters

 
Non-participants

 
Daydreamers

 
Silent Participants

 
Frowners

 
Distracteds

 
Distruptive Group Members

 
Broken Records

 
Long-winded Speakers

 
Humorists

 
Inappropriate Humorists

 
Latecomers and Early Leavers

 
Resisters

 
Side Talkers

 
Know-It-Alls

 
Monopolizes

 
Misinformants

 
Interrupters

 
Subject-Changers

 
Cell Phones and Texting

 
 
Chapter 7. Strategies for Advanced Facilitation
1. Group Conflict

 
Grounding

 
Existing State--Desired State

 
2. Demoralizing External Events

 
Desired State

 
Third Point

 
Redirect Resistance

 
Pace and Lead

 
Structured Interviews

 
3. Disputes

 
Stop the Dispute Early

 
Verbalize the Issue

 
Acknowledge Each Position

 
Identify the Sources of Information

 
Check Perceptions

 
Reframe the Conflict as an Asset

 
4. Dissenting Views

 
Paraphrase Partner

 
Pace the Emotion

 
Redirect the Attack

 
Reframe the Opposition

 
Help Groups Utilize Styles

 
Assumptions Wall

 
Brainstorm Questions

 
Disperse to Agree

 
5. Personal Attacks

 
The Six-Step Response

 
Step Between Opposing Members

 
Change the Narrative

 
Enlist the Group in Solving the Problem

 
6. Challenges to the Leader

 
Process Commercial

 
Engage With More Intensity

 
Engage With Less Intensity

 
Request Civility

 
7. Subgroup Manipulation

 
Decision Matrix

 
Values Decision Matrix

 
Require a Quorum

 
Pace, Lead and Poll

 
One-Minute Advocacy

 
Alternate Microphone Advocacy

 
8. Sabotage

 
9. Irresolvable Conflict

 
Polarity Management

 

"Reading Lemons to Lemonade is like having an expert at your side for every human occasion. Brilliantly to the point, Garmston and Zimmerman anticipate and deal with every issue imaginable when it comes to working with groups. Cycling in and out of principles and practical solutions (including providing sample responses) the authors have provided a succinct and comprehensive guide for becoming experts at working with people in all situations."

Michael Fullan, OC Professor Emeritus
OISE, University of Toronto

"Garmston and Zimmerman have written a book that is the perfect blending of theory and research with very practical, user-ready techniques for facilitating meetings AND for dealing with specific challenges. In particular, I appreciated the focus on reflection, the notion of the levels of expertise, and the many concrete examples of specific facilitating challenges. I would LOVE to see this kind of training offered for administrators!"

David Chojnacki, Executive Director
Near East South Asia Council of Overseas Schools

"Given that there is continuing turnover in educational leadership, it seems critical that effective practices be revived and renewed in order to sustain their impact.  This book addresses that need not by simply reintegrating, but by refining and amplifying effective practices.  More importantly the purpose of this book is to further the effectiveness of those 'being led,' and the interventions offer clear and powerful guidance for leaders wishing to amplify collective thinking power of a group."

Mark Cary, Retired Principal

"This book's major strengths include: its focus on an area that needs much support, its use of cognitive coaching as the basis for strategies and techniques, and the focus on strategies and minimizing theoretical ideas."

Dr. John F. Eller, Professor
St. Cloud State University

"Before I opened this book, I tried to predict what I would find based on the authors’ prior writings. Here’s what I thought:  The book will offer sage yet practical advice in response to common challenges faced by school leaders. It will offer specific and transferable processes and strategies to enhance individual and collective performance. It will be enjoyable to read.

Indeed, that is just what I found. I predict that you will too!"

Jay McTighe, Educational Consultant

"I thought this was great! I got so many good ideas to help me become a better facilitator."

Robbie Schranz, Literacy Coach
Waupun Area School District

"Anyone who is in the position of facilitating team meetings will find Lemons to Lemonade: Resolving Problems in Meetings, Workshops, and PLCs,  an incredibly useful resource. Authors Robert J. Garmston (co-founder of the Center for Cognitive Coaching) and Diane P. Zimmerman (a teacher, principal, superintendent and leadership trainer) share strategies and protocols for managing 'the unexpected occurrences that crop up when groups of people work together.' They seek to help readers use these events 'to build group cohesion, productivity, and learning.'
 
The strategies shared in
Lemons to Lemonade help facilitators understand the needs of particular groups and address specific group dynamics in order to ensure collaborative efforts are fruitful and enjoyable for participants."

Lyn Hilt, Elementary Instructional Technology Integrator/Coach
Pennsylvania

Sample Materials & Chapters

Front Matter

Chapter One

Facilitator Proficiency Scale


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ISBN: 9781452261010

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