Who should facilitate the Collective Leadership Process? Competent facilitation is instrumental to keep momentum throughout the cycle. Early education leaders may not always be the best facilitators of the overall process as it may limit their participation and affect group dynamics. To fully capitalize on the expertise, authority, and passion of the early education leader, it may be advisable to engage the services of a trained outside facilitator. State agencies frequently utilize trained facilitators well versed in process in general, and it may be helpful to select a person with some familiarity and experience with early childhood systems. Effective facilitators understand the importance of balancing process with population outcomes and engage all stakeholders in a Results-based Facilitation Collaborative Work Cycle to achieve common goals (below).
Results-based Facilitation Collaborative Work Cycle
Due to its collaborative nature in addressing a complex issue, Collective Leadership is not a quick fix approach to simple problems where people or organizations can be simply assigned responsibility to solve the problem or address the challenge. The intentional approach to identifying, understanding, and resolving problems requires a commitment of time and resources with the authority to make decisions. Action models for collective leadership typically follow a common path represented in the following Early Education Collective Leadership Cycle which incorporates elements of previously described Collective Action Frameworks:
Whether involved as facilitators or active participants in the Collective Leadership approach, early education leaders who are knowledgeable about and skilled in the nine-stage Early Education Collective Leadership Cycle add value through their contributions and are likely to influence positive change.
The nine stages of the Early Education Collective Leadership cycle are explained in greater detail in the sections that follow, including useful resources and tools. Click below to view each stage.