Build a Creative and Innovative Thinking Organization

Edward de Bono's Meeting Facilitation Training Program

Focus on Facilitation
How to Lead Productive Thinking Together
Meetings that Deliver Remarkable Results

Facilitation Handbook from

"Bringing Lynda Curtin in to facilitate a Focus on Facilitation program for us was a great investment!  Personally, I am much more confident in my own facilitation skills after taking this course, and the feedback from other participants was fantastic.  Lynda is a master at using the various facilitation tools she shared with us, and provided excellent coaching to each participant throughout the program which helped us to develop our skills over the 4-day period. Everyone agreed that the program was brilliant!"

--Deb Connors, President Well-Advised Consulting, Inc., January 2012

Save money, turn your meetings around, free up time, and strengthen your business results with your own team of highly skilled de Bono Thinking Systems Facilitators.

Focus on Facilitation: Twenty-nine core tools from de Bono's Lateral Thinking, and CoRT Tools kits are combined within the flexible Six Thinking Hats method. Facilitators are equipped with a powerful card deck which enables them to quickly deal the cards for any type of important meeting such as: product development, marketing, ideation, project management, problem solving, planning, strategy, decision making, quality improvement.

"The Focus on Facilitation training of the De Bono Thinking Systems Methods provided by Lynda was an amazing learning experience. I left the course feeling confident and empowered to use the tools immediately and facilitate great thinking meetings for my clients. I appreciated Lynda's teaching methods, pace of delivery and "learn by doing" approach, followed by authentic and supportive feedback. I would highly recommend this course !"

--Diane Lloyd, Results, Inc., January 2012

Improve your ability, and strengthen your confidence to facilitate productive thinking discussions with diverse groups. Learn to help groups:

  1. Arrive at well thought through solutions that are supported and can be implemented.
  2. Quickly sort through mountains of information to discard the data that is not relevant, and to focus on the information that is necessary.
  3. Generate new ideas outside the mainstream, and quickly select potential ideas to explore further.
  4. Challenge their current thinking in order to uncover hidden opportunities.
  5. Build benefits into solutions in order to realize value.
  6. Assess risk realistically.
  7. Get comfortable using gut instinct when appropriate.
  8. Participate in productive ideation meetings.
  9. Consider and include the views of others that will be impacted.
  10. See all sides of a situation to avoid being blindsided.
  11. Broaden their thinking about the challenge to find new pathways to solutions.
  12. Learn to appreciate the power of diverse points of view in resolving tough challenges.
  13. Minimize personality conflicts.
  14. Clear up confusion on rapidly changing challenges and complex issues.
  15. Put quiet employees on an equal playing field with those who are more talkative or monopolize meetings.
  16. Be better prepared to implement change.
  17. Create communication plans that are clear and concise.

Attend one of our public events: learn more here


Focus on Facilitation™ is an Advanced Intense Training Experience

Focus on Facilitation is for people that need to lead "thinking meetings." What thinking needs to take place in order for the group to resolve the challenge. We believe the main purpose of many important meetings is to find out the "thinking" and broaden the thinking of each person attending. Thinking performance drives business performance. We help you learn to facilitate this thinking among diverse groups with strong personalities and opinions.

“Lynda, as I prepared for and led my first YMCA Board strategic planning session, I heard your voice coaching me to lead a successful meeting. Four CEO's asked that I call them to discuss on-site work, and a Board member recommended me to be President next year. Thank you for all you have done to prepare me for this exciting and rewarding work.” - Mary Kay Uhing, People Power


Many people used to attend Six Thinking Hats® training because they really wanted to learn how to use the tools to facilitate productive thinking meetings. The one-day and two-day Six Thinking Hats workshops weren't designed to teach facilitation skills, not to mention, facilitation requires additional thinking tools not included in the Six Thinking Hats method. Clients knew this and kept asking for more in-depth facilitation training using de Bono Thinking Systems methods. So, de Bono Thinking Systems, Inc. retained the services of Lynda Curtin to apply her facilitation expertise along with her expertise in applying de Bono methods--Six Thinking Hats, Lateral Thinking, and CoRT Tools to develop a de Bono facilitation course.

Focus on Facilitation is the result.


The TEC Framework

We believe a key ingredient in successful meetings depends upon the facilitator’s ability to: target the thinking of the group, expand the thinking of the group in a productive and constructive way, and then contract the thinking of the group to end up with a plan of action.

T Target Tools are selected to set the target for thinking in the meeting.
E Expand Tools are selected to expand each person's thinking about the challenge in the meeting.
C Contract Tools are selected to contract the thinking about the challenge iending with an action plan that is supported and doable.

Check out case studies and articles. Learn more from great companies like ABB, HP, Nestle, and Boeing.  Click to read

We Focus on 3 Key Facilitation Skills:

  1. How to facilitate parallel thinking — getting everyone using the same tool, at the same time, on the same topic. This saves time and speeds up the process.

  2. How to design meeting agendas to solve a wide variety of challenges. Different types of challenges require different thinking frameworks and tools.

  3. How to improve participant input by using content language without having to be the expert.

Delegates will learn how to:

  1. Plan, organize, and lead a wide variety of meetings using appropriate de Bono tools. Keep clients moving forward to achieve success.

  2. Work with clients to define and test the overall goal to ensure a successful outcome and confirm it’s important.

  3. Help clients sort out their concerns and then determine which frameworks will resolve them: ideation, problem solving, decision making, opportunity searching, etc. (different concerns are resolved with different frameworks)

  4. Design flexible meeting plans to meet client needs. End with an action plan that will be supported and can be implemented. Measure the level of commitment.

  5. Help clients focus on future consequences and balance risk versus opportunity.

  6. Set priority on risks to be minimized, data to be gathered, and benefits to be realized.

  7. Use powerful idea generating tools that yield fresh new solutions.

  8. Help clients become comfortable with the front-end messiness of idea generation.

  9. Develop frameworks for rigorous idea evaluation linked to corporate objectives, strategy and customer needs.

  10. Work with idea sorting and idea power tools.

  11. Lead clients thorough business challenges to identify hidden opportunities that “out-think” the competition.

  12. Interview appropriate attendees in advance to gather helpful information.

  13. Decide what can be done in advance of meetings to save time during the meetings.

  14. Help clients decide who should attend meetings and for what purpose.

  15. Ensure groups stays on track throughout meetings. Remain neutral and minimize ego plays among groups.

  16. Define how decisions are going to be made during the meeting.

  17. Offer suggestions to clients to make meetings stimulating, enjoyable and useful.

  18. Use visual aids to stimulate and provoke the thinking of the attendees.

  19. Foster a meeting atmosphere that attendees will enjoy.

Facilitator Materials

You'll receive a large variety of practical facilitator tools to put to use during meetings to help keep you and your clients on target. Included is your own de Bono Thinking Systems facilitator kit with your handy facilitator guidebook and card deck. You’ll be ready to respond at a moments notice when clients call on you to work with them.

Sampling of available tools

Free Option: Earn Your Authorized de Bono Facilitator Credential

Skill development doesn’t end when the event ends. We know it takes real world facilitation experience putting the tools to use to develop confidence, experience and skill. You can choose, at no additional cost, to earn your Authorized de Bono Facilitator credential.  Complete three fieldwork assignments that demonstrate competence using the tools. You will submit your reports and upon successful demonstration of competence you will be granted the privilege of using Authorized de Bono Thinking Systems Facilitator. This is an exclusive designation with global recognition of significant accomplishment and professionalism. It goes with you from job-to-job.

“It’s only been three days since Focus on Facilitation™ certification ended. I used the tools yesterday. I called my client, confirmed the focus, and then set up the thinking cards in a TEC model. When we held the meeting, I began by asking, “This is our focus as I understand it, do you concur?” Four of the five attendees, that is everyone but my client, said no, that wasn’t what they came to discuss! Instead of panicking or sweating or getting irritated, I merely rearranged a few cards and began with a checklist of current thinking to establish what main concepts needed to be dealt with. Worked brilliantly.” - Chuck Dymer, The Idea Loft

Participant Profile

Employees who need to lead productive thinking meetings that are results oriented.

Prerequisites and Workshop Duration

Duration Pre-requisites
3-Day Attendees must have completed training in a Six Thinking Hats® end-user workshop.
4-Day Includes Six Thinking Hats prerequisite.


Group Size

4 - 8 participants. Less than 4 participants — the richness of learning from other group members is reduced. More than 8 participants — it’s difficult to coach according to individual need as facilitation practice times are shorter.

What to Expect During the Workshop

The experience is very intense. Plan to clear work and home schedules for the week. Hold at an off-site location when possible to minimize work distractions. Participants are kept very busy. It's highly interactive with lots of job related facilitation practice accompanied with insightful and sensitive coaching. Success is driven by each participant's willingness to take risks in a safe environment, and to experiment with lots of new tools and techniques. Plan to complete evening assignments each evening to be ready for the next day.

Two Ways You Can Learn Focus on Facilitation™

Attend a Focus on Facilitation™ Seminar

  1. Book Lynda to lead a customized Focus on Facilitation™ de Bono Innovation event for your group. Call 818-507-6055 for details.

  2. Attend a public workshop. View our current dates, locations and registration details.

Book Lynda to present or keynote at your conferences, team meetings and executive retreats.

Call 818-507-6055 to discuss the ways we can add value to your events by stimulating the thinking of your groups.

2015 Next Event

Chicago, IL

April 14-15

Save $400

Advanced Creativity: includes Six Thinking Hats and Lateral Thinking Methods!