Close this search box.
Close this search box.

What an Outside Facilitator Can Do for You

No matter how hands-on you usually like to be as a business leader, in the case of running meetings at a retreat, it’s often best to hand the reins to a pro. You’ll still set the goals, the agenda, the rules and the tone for the retreat; your outside facilitator will simply bring your vision to fruition. For an investment of anywhere between $1,500 and $15,000 per day, a qualified facilitator can:

Set and Maintain Ground Rules

Qualified facilitators come into each situation without interpersonal biases and are experts at establishing ground rules for meetings and sticking to them. By contrast, CEOs (or the internal surrogates they assign) may find it difficult to abide by the rules they set or struggle to keep others from transgressing those boundaries and launching individual criticism, which can stop or derail meaningful exchanges.

Assign Homework and Expectations

A facilitator can help you identify key issues for discussion and craft surveys on agenda items to hand out before and after the event, in order to help your attendees prepare for an effective meeting in advance and to reflect on the meeting discussions.

Ensure Everyone Participates in the Conversation

A good facilitator will keep your team engaged in challenging conversations longer than you might typically think appropriate, giving the less assertive or more reserved members of your team the time they need to formulate and articulate their thoughts.

Cultivate Team-building Opportunities

Facilitators have experience with designing team exercises, such as pairing up employees or small groups and assigning them to perform different exercises and share different experiences.

Keep Track of the Output

Your facilitator will help you capture key decisions and unresolved issues—resolutions, issues and unanswered questions. New goals will all be captured and consolidated in a closing summary document that recaps the progress, conclusions, goals achieved and issues left unresolved. Some facilitators will lead post-retreat sessions to assess how well the group has implemented ideas and goals.


  • Get the CEO Briefing

    Sign up today to get weekly access to the latest issues affecting CEOs in every industry
  • upcoming events


    Strategic Planning Workshop

    1:00 - 5:00 pm

    Over 70% of Executives Surveyed Agree: Many Strategic Planning Efforts Lack Systematic Approach Tips for Enhancing Your Strategic Planning Process

    Executives expressed frustration with their current strategic planning process. Issues include:

    1. Lack of systematic approach (70%)
    2. Laundry lists without prioritization (68%)
    3. Decisions based on personalities rather than facts and information (65%)


    Steve Rutan and Denise Harrison have put together an afternoon workshop that will provide the tools you need to address these concerns.  They have worked with hundreds of executives to develop a systematic approach that will enable your team to make better decisions during strategic planning.  Steve and Denise will walk you through exercises for prioritizing your lists and steps that will reset and reinvigorate your process.  This will be a hands-on workshop that will enable you to think about your business as you use the tools that are being presented.  If you are ready for a Strategic Planning tune-up, select this workshop in your registration form.  The additional fee of $695 will be added to your total.

    To sign up, select this option in your registration form. Additional fee of $695 will be added to your total.

    New York, NY: ​​​Chief Executive's Corporate Citizenship Awards 2017

    Women in Leadership Seminar and Peer Discussion

    2:00 - 5:00 pm

    Female leaders face the same issues all leaders do, but they often face additional challenges too. In this peer session, we will facilitate a discussion of best practices and how to overcome common barriers to help women leaders be more effective within and outside their organizations. 

    Limited space available.

    To sign up, select this option in your registration form. Additional fee of $495 will be added to your total.

    Golf Outing

    10:30 - 5:00 pm
    General’s Retreat at Hermitage Golf Course
    Sponsored by UBS

    General’s Retreat, built in 1986 with architect Gary Roger Baird, has been voted the “Best Golf Course in Nashville” and is a “must play” when visiting the Nashville, Tennessee area. With the beautiful setting along the Cumberland River, golfers of all capabilities will thoroughly enjoy the golf, scenery and hospitality.

    The golf outing fee includes transportation to and from the hotel, greens/cart fees, use of practice facilities, and boxed lunch. The bus will leave the hotel at 10:30 am for a noon shotgun start and return to the hotel after the cocktail reception following the completion of the round.

    To sign up, select this option in your registration form. Additional fee of $295 will be added to your total.