Sample Ground Rules for Meetings and Training Programs
Participants in coalition meetings and training programs expect that their needs will be taken care of during their time with you, and that their input and involvement will be reflected and respected.
At the beginning of your meeting or training program, participants should be asked to contribute to “ground rules” for the session. The facilitator should have a “Ground Rules” tear sheet prepared to record participants’ responses. Once contributions to “ground rules” are obtained, you can reference the list below to add any that may be relevant to your program.
- Please try and keep to the meeting/training program schedule; we will not penalize the participants who arrive on time.
- Everything that is said here stays here (confidentiality is important to ensure participant comfort and candor).
- Please keep cell phones off, or on “vibrate” (you can make exceptions for participants who are on “crisis” duty).
- Participants can participate to the degree to which they want (or not).
- While it’s important for everyone to participate, it’s also important that individuals don’t over-participate.
- No idea is a bad idea.
- If instructions for discussions and/or activities are not clear, participants will ask for clarification.
- While breaks are scheduled, participants should let facilitators know if additional breaks are needed.
- Participants will let the facilitator(s) know if the training room is too hot or too cold, or any other issues that may affect their comfort.
You may also want to consider a “ground rule” that allows the process to be “fluid and flexible.” Although you will have an agenda, permission to adjust the agenda and its time frame – based upon participant input and needs and possible time constraints – may be a good idea.