Case Study: AHCWA Uses Interactive Tools to Facilitate Engaging Workshops

Setting the scene

Aboriginal Health Council of WA (AHCWA) is the peak body for the 22 Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services and was looking to engage their delegates with interactive facilitation tools at their conference.

The conference involved sixteen wonderful presenters discussing subjects ranging from environmental health issues to sexual health and social issues. 12 engaging workshops over 2 days involved key stakeholders from healthcare professionals to community members to policymakers. GroupMap (workshop facilitation tool) captured thoughts, opinions, and potential solutions from over 250 participants in real-time. Read on to find out how.

How were the workshops run?

Each workshop began with a presentation and a short discussion involving the workshop issue. After discussion, the audience broke up into groups, with each table having a digital scribe to record thoughts and comments onto a private map.

Each table was able to contribute in real-time, as well as comment and vote on ideas they felt most strongly about. As participants did so, the results were displayed via projector for the whole room to see.

As the workshop progressed, it was great to see the culmination of the room’s ideas and audience response captured and displayed front and center. Participants brainstormed what issues currently exist, what are the gaps, what has worked well, and what needs to be done.

This ultimately culminated in a group discussion on concerns relevant to the group, with a range of possible solutions to propose to the government.

Top 5 takeaways for conference planners

  1. Driven by audience feedback

    Feedback from last year’s conference saw a need for more audience interaction and contribution and this was the driving force behind this year’s workshop structure. The engagement was semi-structured with a lightning presentation on a key topic, grouped table discussion which was captured, shared, and discuss with the whole group in real-time, followed by questions and comments from the room.

  2. Ask the right questions

    The questions you ask direct the minds of participants and guides discussion. In this case, the questions were focused on what are the existing gaps, and what solutions or steps should be taken. Clear and concise questions acted as signposts and made it difficult to wander off-topic.

  3. Using interactive workshop facilitation tools

    Collaboration is time consuming when people have to take turns speaking. Interactive facilitation tools  (in this case GroupMap) allowed workshops to rapidly collect and store ideas in order to dive right into the discussion. As ideas were shared on the big screen, all the views in the room could be seen and added to the goals of the event.

  4. Mix it up

    The conference also showcased a musical number from an Indigenous Youth Group, inspiring storytelling, and a plethora of different topics.

  5. Following through

    Often we go through all the hard work and forget to capitalize on our efforts. Collating all the sticky notes can be too daunting a task. As there were separate reports for each topic and workshop, this could then be easily reviewed and an action list created.

What was the reaction?

It was great to see everyone engaged and enjoying the workshop collaborations. Workshop facilitators were able to customize how the audience interacted with GroupMap (in this case mainly through voting on the most important ideas and issues) leading to a more effective and focused discussion. Having a real-time brainstorming tool allowed people to share their ideas and to have this captured in real-time.

Having concluded the interactive workshops it was time to wrap things up with a review of everyone’s comments and ideas. The facilitators printed off their reports during the morning tea break, and shortly after the group as a whole enjoyed each facilitator’s presentation on what workshop participants had to say about the issues at hand.

Looking for more?

Inspired to use GroupMap at your next conference? Start your free trial today, and if you need help or have any questions get in touch with us.

Top 3 Metrics To Measure Your Workshop Success

GroupMap brainstorming

Everyday, tens of thousands of workshops are being run around the world in companies, organisations and workplaces, to explore a specific topic, transfer knowledge, solve identified problems or create something new.

Through GroupMap’s work and knowledge centre, we know that many workshop facilitators are keen to measure the impact of the workshops they organise and run. There are many positive reasons to measure a workshop success:

  • If your workshops are funded, good measurements can convince funders to maintain and support the work that you do.
  • Encourage people to attend and feel satisfied that the work that you are doing with your workshops is worthwhile and making a positive difference,
  • Allow you to compare workshops over time and show improvement or the need for adapting the workshop to be more successful for the intended audience.
  • Gives you a way to improve practice, and deliver more value for clients and participants.
  • Helps to engage the audience and to give the audience a sense of agency.

In this post, we will look at three types of workshop success metrics that gives you a good measure of the workshops you run! We’ll then show you how to use GroupMap’s Survey feature to collect these easily.

1. Workshop specific metrics 

workshop metrics

Each workshop topic will come with its own sets of success metrics based on the topic at hand – i.e. what we want participants to learn – through to the structure and content of the workshop. These metrics measure the outcomes and goals of the workshop itself.

Some questions include:

  • How much more knowledge or understanding have you gained from the workshop in comparison to before you started?
  • What do we believe is our return on time invested for this meeting? Was it worth our time?
  • Were there any topics you thought should have been covered in the workshop that was not?
  • What can be improved in terms of helping you understand the information or reach the outcomes?
  • How well do we think we achieved the goal of the workshop today?

2. Individual goal setting metrics 

individual goal metrics

Another way to measure the success of your workshops is by inviting each participant to set goals of what they would like to achieve, personally / individually, by being part of the workshop, and seeing if they achieved these by the end of your delivery. 

These individual metrics can also be used when participants walk away from the workshops with a concrete plan of action of what else they might want to learn, discover, or practice as a result. 

Here are some individual goal setting questions that can get your participants thinking about what they want to see/get by being part of your workshop:

  • What are the top 3 things I would like to achieve from attending this workshop & did I achieve them?
  • What has this workshop made me realize I need to in terms of ?
  • What important lessons can I bring back to my colleagues and organization from the workshop?

3. Good workshop leadership & facilitation metrics

facilitator metrics

Our recent case study conversations with workshop facilitators David Clark (of Telescope Advisers) and Dr Zakhar Maletyski (of Water Harmony Global Initiative) have shown us again the importance of having good leadership to run workshops.

Good workshop leadership is the ability to be able to encourage brainstorming and discussions, make everyone feel comfortable to participate and share their ideas, while making sure everything is on schedule and on time. 

For us, measuring good leadership is one of the most important workshop metrics and something that you can ask your participants for feedback. Questions you can ask include:

  • Did your workshop facilitator keep the workshop running smoothly and on time?
  • On a scale of 1 – 10, with 10 being excellent, how would you rate your facilitator’s skills in making sure the workshop was engaging and interesting? 
  • What advice would you like to share with your facilitator to make the workshop better led?
  • What did you enjoy most from your workshop facilitation?

Gathering & collecting success metrics from your workshop

There are many ways to gather all of the above metrics for your workshop. The most common way to do this is of course via a survey. 

There are also many ways and digital tools available to collect your survey, from paper based directly after your face-to-face workshop or a follow-up email using Survey Monkey, Google Forms or many other survey services out there. 

If you’re already using GroupMap’s templates, maps and features to run an online brainstorming session for your workshop, then why not take advantage of the survey functionality to keep your participants in the same space and using a tool they’re already familiar with?

How to create a quick survey for your meeting

  1. In your map or meeting template, browse to the side menu to CUSTOMISE YOUR MAP.
  2. Then ADD A STEP called Survey

    workshop metrics survey

  3. Choose your questions type based on the type of metric you want to capture. SAVE CHANGES and you are now ready to go.

survey in groupmap

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