The Intertwining Joys and Struggles of 2020

Mike Beebe Uncategorized

Joy #1: Centering Our Participants Online

My last in-person training was hosting my friend and colleague, Eva Jo Meyers. She introduced her book, Raise the Room, A Practical Guide to Participant-Centered Facilitation in early March just before stay-at-home orders were issued in response to the COVID-19 epidemic. “Raise the Room” took on an entirely different meaning as I learned, along with colleagues around the world, how to keep centering our participants online. 

Joy #2: Showing Up as Racial Advocates

In late May and early June, we all witnessed the great injustice and tragedies of the killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Toni McDade, and Ahmed Arboury. In response, we saw people across the country rise up in righteous indignation to protest police brutality and systemic racial injustice both on the streets and online. I both engaged in my own inquiry and facilitated the inquiry of community groups and organizations in how to show up as racial justice advocates most effectively in this moment. I joined my colleagues on the Board of the ToP Network in issuing a Statement of Solidarity and then began the hard work of ‘walking our talk’ as a network by engaging in almost weekly Community Conversations online, rewriting trainer competencies to ensure diversity, equity and inclusion are improved in our network, rewriting curriculum, and drafting our Networks Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion goals. 

Joy #3: Facilitating Online Groups to Launch Race Based Caucusing in their Orgs

My colleagues with F.A.C.E. Consulting Collaborative and I launched our DEI foundations training online and delivered that to a half dozen non-profit and public sector organizations. We facilitated several community debriefing sessions of the Black Lives Matter uprising. We supported our clients in launching race based caucusing in their organizations as a tool to work towards racial equity. I am still astounded we did this all online. 

Joy #4: Attending & Learning from Dozens of Online Workshops

One of my greatest learning joys was that I got to attend many workshops online that I would not have been able to attend if in-person. I learned a great deal about racial equity work by attending trainings led by the Courage Conversations Academy and Be the Change Consulting. Additionally I feel so lucky to have been part of a great course called How to Facilitate Racially Just Spaces offered by the RISE Center for Racial Justice

Joy #5: Remembering the Important Role Facilitation Has in Healing the World

I was reminded in 2020, through these joys and struggles, of the important role good facilitation plays in building community, creating healing spaces, and mobilizing individuals, groups and organizations to action. I am pleased to be offering in collaboration with my colleagues some great public workshops that will support you in your community building, healing, and mobilizing work as facilitator, leaders, and trainers! 

Joy #6: Creating Online Training to Share Leadership, Facilitation and Cultural Competency Skills

I am so pleased to be offering a Gracious Space online training with Pat Hughes, the author of two books, Gracious Space and Courageous Collaboration with Gracious Space

In March, I will be offering ToP Facilitation Methods Online with my colleagues, Sherry Johnson & Brigid Riley. 

Finally, I’m so pleased to be offering my Roundtables again this spring. The Roundtables are a facilitated peer learning experience to support each other in our journeys to become more effective facilitators and supervisors. We read a book together, share both joys and struggles and we offer training in both facilitation and supervision skills.  I will be co-hosting the Supervisor Roundtable with my friend and colleague, Edna Sadberry. I will also be offering my Facilitator Roundtable

I look forward to an opportunity to connect with you. Join us for training and coaching that will improve your capacity to build community, create healing spaces, and mobilize groups to action in 2021.

In community,