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Explain the ground rules and meeting structure

The facilitator should explain the meeting ground rules at the beginning—how the meeting will be structured, how much time will be devoted to what.

Review the difference between voting and consensus

 Explain the difference between a majority vote and coming to consensus as the sense of the meeting. A senior League member or board member can help the facilitator explain. The time devoted to this will depend on the experience of the members participating.

The role of the discussion leader/facilitator is to make sure that:

  • everyone has a copy of the agenda/program and knows what to expect,
  • meeting format and ground rules are understood up front,
  • members understand they have a role in the meeting/consensus, and
  • everyone stays on track until the day’s goal is met.

Define the recorder’s role

The recorder should be at the front of the room in clear view of the members participating. It is best to record on large easel paper that can be viewed by everyone. After each question, check back with the participants to make sure the consensus of the room is captured before you move on. After each section, make notes to include in the comments sections of the consensus report. Remember, these are limited to 200 words or less in each comment box. Comments are optional, not required.

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