The Importance of Buy-In

One principle of facilitation is that if people don’t participate in and own the solutions to the problems, or agree to the decisions made, implementation will be half-hearted at best, possibly misunderstood, and quite likely to fail. Another principle is the importance of being able to elicit, harness, and focus the vast intellectual capital (the good ideas) and goodwill that is within the members of the group.

This approach does several things. First, it emphasizes that the facilitator is on an equal level with the participants. It also encourages participants to solve the problem on their own, using tools provided by the facilitator. This helps the team grow together, and it also fosters an atmosphere of respect and trust — the sort of atmosphere that is conducive to successful meetings.