Engaging Communities: Transforming facilitation and conflict resolution masterclass

Working Visions has partnered with Planning Partnerships to bring this three-day, intensive, practical master class to those working in change across Australia.

The Engaging Communities: Transforming facilitation and conflict resolution masterclass is a skills-based training course that will equip you with the key facilitation and conflict resolution skills needed to transform your community engagement, multi-stakeholder partnership or co-design approach.

Facilitation skills are powerful tools both in the workplace, in collaborative processes and in engaging communities in planning.

Conflict is a normal and healthy aspect of everyday life. Through conflict, new ideas are generated.  A skilled facilitator can assist communities to make more effective decisions by learning how to manage those conflicts, to work with divergent stakeholder groups and build positive outcomes. 

Some of the biggest challenges we face as a society involve the need to tackle complex systems change including around socio-economic issues, early intervention in health and community sectors, challenges of an ageing population, digital disruption, management of environmental resources and climate change adaption.

As co-design, partnership working, collective impact and collaboration across sectors become more embedded in the way we work, it is increasingly important that practitioners, whether from government, the community, academia or business sectors have the essential skills needed to achieve greater impact.

What you will learn

This Masterclass is designed for participants to achieve the following outcomes:

  • an understanding of the different forms and levels of Community Engagement (CE)
  • a knowledge of the principles of CE
  • an overview of co-design approaches, community conversations and in making sustainable decisions in a collaborative environment
  • development of skills to manage the content and process of a group that improves participatory decision making.
  • an ability to observe group dynamics in a CE setting, including identifying and managing group tensions
  • an ability to carry out the role and func­tion of group facilitator.
  • development of active listening skills, effective intervention and assertiveness skills
  • ability to understand and analyse the different sources of conflict and to develop skills to manage conflict constructively.
  • development of the skills in using task and maintenance interventions

Who should attend this Masterclass?

This masterclass is specifically designed for those working in community engagement, multi-stakeholder partnerships and/or co-design and in areas where there is potential for conflict.  The course will be invaluable to you if you:

  • Work on complex problems, with multiple stakeholders and/or in a co-design or service-development role
  • Are in a public-sector-led area partnership, a place-based initiative or facilitating community conversations and stakeholder engagement
  • Are part of, or developing, a Collective Impact backbone initiative
  • Are new to community engagement, community consultation, collaboration, stake­holder engagement
  • Work for local council, government or not-for-profit and seek to improve the quality and impact of community planning
  • Are in natural resource management and wish to deepen community engagement and stakeholder collaboration
  • Work in strategic planning, consultancy, partnership development or change management where community/stakeholder engage­ment is a core aspect of your role.

How you will learn

All participants will gain new knowledge and skills that can be applied immediately to the work situation. The three days are practical and practice based. People learn in different ways and there is a mix of theoretical input, discussion, participatory exer­cises and group work using case material related to work environments. Coaching, feedback and comprehensive study materials are provided.

Assessment (additional option)

There is a $320 fee for the assessment, invoiced separately by McMillan. Doing the assessment is a great way to consolidate your learning. In addition the course provides you with the opportunity to develop the skills and competencies and prepare evidence for recognition of prior learning (RPL) for the Unit Manage Conflict in the Diploma of Government.  If you opt to do the course assessment the Registered Training Organisation (RTO) McMillan Staff Development will manage the RPL process for you and on completion issue you with the certificate.  Assessment is undertaken through participation and observation in the course and worksheets completed after the course.  Detailed information about the assessment requirements will be given to those who wish to be assessed.

Your Trainers

Tracey Wilson is the owner of Working Visions. She has over 25 years experience as a community engagement practitioner, trainer, facilitator and in working with complex systems change, organisational development, collaboration and collective impact. Tracey is a fully qualified trainer and assessor and is passionate about building capacity of participants during their professional development journey.

Jo Bentley-Davey  is a community services educator with teaching experience in vocational education and training and the tertiary education arena. Jo’s professional social work practice spans over ten years, in both not-for profit and government sectors in roles. As a community engagement practitioner Jo has worked in collaboration with local government and communities on policy development and place based community building projects. In her spare time, Jo is also an Associate Lecturer in Field Education at James Cook university and loves her role as a field educator working with practitioners of the future. 

Jen McDonnell has been working in community and stakeholder engagement in environmental planning and management for 18 years.  She has experience in a wide range of complex and controversial consultation projects, social research and communications.

Course Cost / Information

Course Cost –  3 day intensive:  $1,980 pp (incl GST).  Healthy catering daily. 
Assessment extra $320 pp (incl GST) – invoiced and assessed by RTO McMillan Staff Development.

For more information or to register your interest email: training@workingvisions.com.au
Download the course flyer here.
We can arrange in-house group bookings with discounts available

The course is tailored to small group delivery, so places are limited. We are committed to bringing the course to rural and regional locations so please contact us to discuss your needs.

Our delivery is culturally sensitive. Some skills learnt align with the IAP2 approach to community engagement.

Upcoming dates and locations:

26 – 28 October 2021 Brisbane

16-18 November 2021  Atherton Tablelands or Cairns – preferably the Tablelands  

22 – 24 February 2022  location TBA

The course attracts 20 CPD points for the Australian Association of Social Workers and the Australian College of Nursing