Number of participants: 12 - 50
Pre-Work Required: You will need to decide on the number of discussion groups you want to have. Decide the major categories of diversity which you want to ensure are in each discussion group. Be careful to create categories that are non-controversial or judgemental but clarify the diversity of the group for the particular topic they will discuss: i.e. age group, kind of stakeholder (client, service provider, administration, etc.), role in the organization, etc.
Rational Aim: To ensure that you have the diversity of the large group represented within each of the small discussion groups.
Experiential Aim: To quickly and simply organise discussion groups in such a way that participants are not asked to remember numbers, table locations, etc.
1. Now we are going to organise our discussion groups. We want to ensure that we have a representative group in each of the smaller groups.
2. In order to do this we have divided the larger group into the following categories:
(share the categories)
1. Now does everyone know which category they fit into?...
2. All right let's have all the people in the first category (name it).
3. Please come up here and form a single line. We now want to follow on with all the people in the second category (name it); just follow on from the first category forming a
4. If any of you have a close colleague or friend in the room please change your position so that you stand next to that person.
5. All right, now I will start at this end counting off table numbers, just go directly to your table as soon as I have told you your number.
Here are the instructions for the discussion groups...
1. Explain the categories so that everyone can understand them and decide which one they fit into.
2. Deal with any persons unsure of their category.
3. Have them line up along the wall or around the outside of the room so that you can maintain some order. Continue until all the groups are lined up in a single file.
4. Move down the line counting off people as you go based on the number of discussion groups.
5. Be ready to tell them what they are to do, how much time they have, etc.
Follow-Up Required: None
Source: Dr. E Hamso at firstname.lastname@example.org
Derived from: The IAF Europe Methods Workbook