One or Two Silent Members

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Identification
Alternative names: 
One or two silent members in a group whose other members participate actively.
Intent or purpose: 
Improve participation of everyone in the group.
Recommended size of group: 
unknown
Howto
Examples of successes and failures: 
A common mistake is to say, “Mr Z, you haven’t talked much today. Is there anything you’d like to add?” This may work when a shy member ha non-verbally indicated a wish to speak. But all too often, the quiet person feels put on the spot and withdraws further.
Level of Difficulty to Facilitate: 
Not set
Procedures: 

“I’d like to get opinions from those who haven’t talked for a while.”

Breaking into small groups works even better. Small groups allow shy members to speak up without having to compete for “air time.”

How flexible is the process?: 
Very
Background
History of Development: 

Developed by Community at Work with Sam Kaner

References: 
Kaner, Sam et al, “Facilitator’s Guide to Participatory Decision-Making,” New Society Publishers, Gabriola Island, BC, Canada, 1996, pp. 114-118
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