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Welcome to Facilitation Stories, where we discover how facilitators ended up in the profession, and how facilitation methods, principles and techniques are used more widely. Brought to you by IAF England and Wales. For more information on our chapter, click here.

Jul 6, 2020

In today's episode, Helene talks to Trevor Durnford Co-Founder at Facil Profundo, Certified professional facilitator and until January of this year Chair of the International Association of Facilitators. He is based in Uruguay.

But before that, don't forget to check out the online meetup Facilitate the Future we Want on 17 July 2020, organised by two of the voices from last week's episode, Cat and John. Join here:

Trevor talks about the biggest changes he's seen since 1993, when he first started facilitating: asking teams on the shop floor to contribute to continuous improvement conversations. Trevor tends to work more in Leadership and Culture now.

Over the last few months, Trevor has been investing in kit to be able to deliver high quality virtual sessions, even though he was already used to the medium. It's great not to get as much on a plane, even if you like traveling!

Him and colleagues have found themselves focusing more on specific outcomes for the clients, to provide continuous value, for example how they can become more resilient and flexible.

Helene asks about the opportunities for facilitators. After reading some research by Gardner, Trevor has picked up on: the expectation of 50% of people working remotely in organisations, helping clients with things they don't usually do online, like having profound dialogue. 

32% organisations are thinking of replacing permanent staff with contingent staff. Maybe there's an opportunity to help with knowledge retention in organisations.

Finally, helping people in organisations being resilient and flexible during difficult times and developing facilitative capabilities in leaders.

Helene wanted to know what challenges are lurking in the horizon. For the facilitator community: the belief system around not being enough work and not wanting to "bother" the clients, while actually facilitators can help when organisations start to turn.

Engagement-driven versus outcome-driven. Organisations are more likely to be interested in outcome, whereas the political arena needs dialogue and engagement.

What risks are we running? Trevor has noticed that there are lots of "experts" out there. Is there a risk in going for mass consensus instead of looking for a good decision-making process, that is driven by real expertise?

Helene is wondering where Trevor sees himself in (in his words) the "next normal"? Having profound dialogue is the most important thing right now, using the appropriate methods and tools.

What is Trevor looking forward to?
Not what you would expect: Profundo Wine! and supporting international companies through the current chaos. And borders opening in Uruguay, so he can take off his wooly jumper...

Get in touch through Twitter with Trevor @tdurnford and check out his website

Connect with @helenejewell on Twitter

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