I often liken my role as an external facilitator to one of ‘directing traffic’ – my job is to help everything move along in the right direction, so people can reach their desired destinations, in a reasonably orderly fashion.
But of course, in reality, it is obviously a lot more than just standing on point duty – if you scratch away at the surface a little, you’ll find I’m actually: part motivator, part supporter, part sounding board, part coach, part ideas-generator, part problem-solver, part mentor, part celebrator.
And what those added dimensions, from someone external, can do for an organisation wishing to build its capability, can be truly transformational – which is always an absolute privilege to watch unfold.
Takes the pressure off
Most organisations have way more to do than they have hours in which to do it. Bringing in someone external can alleviate some of the pressure, just in the knowing that one piece of the puzzle is being led by another resource – therefore taking at least some of the work off the shoulders of an often already-overwhelmed internal team.
A new perspective
You know how it is when you’ve been looking at something for too long and you start not to see the short-comings, or the potential new possibilities? And sometimes it can be surprising how readily someone new can come along and see simple changes, that we’ve never thought of, that could make such a big difference?
I have to say I have experienced this myself many times, through working with new people who have opened my eyes to things I would never have even thought of – sometimes things so simple I couldn’t believe I hadn’t thought of them myself.
The benefit of a specialist
We can’t all be good at everything! (And even if we were, we wouldn’t have the time to do it all).
So it makes sense to stick to the things we are best at (and that we like doing, if at all possible), and pay someone who has expertise in areas that we don’t, to do the things they are specialist at.
(As someone who is a bit of a luddite when it comes technology, I can attest to this firsthand!)
Makes it happen
A bit of external accountability is a wonderful thing. I know myself I am much better at getting things done when someone else is relying on me doing so or I have told someone I will do it for them. There is no doubt that having someone who is waiting on us gets us moving.
This is why so many people in business (myself included) and executives in organisations, are seeking out coaches these days – because we know it works. We know that when we have that monthly coaching session booked in we are much more accountable to the achieving the things we said we would do.
It’s a case of the old saying: what gets measured, gets managed.
Leaving a Legacy
For me, one of the biggest ‘feel-goods’ I get from working with an organisation to help them build their capability, is seeing that capability live on, long after I have finished my work with them. That comes down to helping them establish good systems and good processes, and embed those systems and processes within their practices, so they continue to provide the intended benefits, regardless of who is involved in the delivery.
How has your organisation benefitted from utilising an external specialist? Perhaps you’ve never thought of bringing in an outsider and are only just now starting to imagine how some external support might be able to help your organisation level up its capability?
I’d love to hear what your organisation could use some external assistance with, and explore how we could build that increased capability together – so do get in touch with me on firstname.lastname@example.org or 0421 525 048 for a chat. I hope to hear from you soon!
And if you’d like to receive my fortnightly Good Governance E-newsletter, with information, tips, and news of upcoming training and networking events, just let me know.