To listen authentically, one needs to listen to understand as opposed to listening to respond. In order to do this, the design workshop facilitator needs to be cognizant of their own strengths and weaknesses. The design workshop facilitator focuses on the end users and the end users’ observations, questions, and interviews to insure that the app that is built is relevant to the people it serves.
Many tenets of theater and improvisation have important tools that support authentic listening. If you think about a favorite scene in a play or in a movie one of the reasons the scene is successful is because the actors and improvisers know that the most important person on stage, is not themselves but their scene partners.
For the design workshop facilitator, ostensibly, your scene partners are the end users or the customers. Only by truly listening to the end users will you all be able to create a relevant app.
Conference Calls are meetings too.
With the miracle of the internet comes the ability to have daily meetings in present time from far corners of the planet. And yet. I notice that people think conference calls are a chance to do errands, take a walk or eat a big lunch.
Conference calls are meetings too. They deserve the respect of preparation and attention that all meetings get.