Debrief with a difference

I have to blog this – cos this is NEVER going to happen again. Debrief 3 bishops (and an archdeacon) of the Church of England in Christchurch College Oxford. If God had meant us to drive cars he would never have created Oxford. Parking was a nightmare after a 2.5 hour journey there was nowhere to park more than 2 hours at the outside. Once I got in with laptop and projector I got to the second problem – panelled wood – so nowhere to project – so we had to move to another room and take pictures off the walls in order to do the presentation. At which point the laptop cable started to misbehave turning the screen to a lurid yellow glow. And the screen didn’t reformat properly throwing half the text off – but there was no time to fix it. The project involved 4 separate pieces of research method – the summary ran to 85 slides and I was asked to summarise these in half an hour to allow time for questions, discussion and decision making.  The miracle was that I managed to keep the talky bit to 30 minutes (ex-agency boys/tricks of the trade eh?)  Debriefs are funny things – if you start from the decision that needs to be taken – actually a lot less needs delivering. You need the credentials of the researchers, you need to understand a bit about the method – but the rest is really options and decision support. Which is a lot less than 85 slides. It was a lot better meeting for the debrief part being half an hour and by letting the decision making breathe actually it felt like more time passed than really had. We got feedback from all of the 8 people in the meeting.

The last thing to say was that the screen played a supporting role – it endorsed (in yellow) what I was saying rather than me glossing findings on the screen. Hope I have the fear/prudence/discipline to be that ruthless again. Bet I don’t.



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