On Saturday, November 10, over 70 participants from a variety of disciplines gathered at a workshop facilitated by Dr. Diana Hulse, professor and chair of the Counselor Education Department. The workshop, “From Therapeutic Groups to Boardrooms: How to be Effective Leaders and Members,” provided insight into a practice that is commonly used but often misunderstood: group work. There is an art behind leading a group in order to facilitate change among its members, regardless of whether the group is counseling or business related.
Dr. Hulse emphasized the importance of balancing process, which is the interpersonal relationships among group members, with the content, which is the information. It is critical to understand what works for members and what does not work by recognizing how these two look in a verbal and nonverbal context. The giving and receiving of feedback is significant and perspectives on this matter can vary greatly; this should be addressed by the leader with the group members. By using experiential demonstrations, Dr. Hulse enabled the practice of group work to come to life within her presentation. In effect, she was balancing the very concepts she was teaching – that of process and content.
This workshop was part of the Connections & Conversations Workshop series sponsored by Gamma Lambda Chi, the Fairfield University’s chapter of Chi Sigma Iota, which is the International Honor Society for counselors. The Chapter looks forward to hosting the next workshop on February 23, 2013 with Dr. Courtland Lee as the presenter.
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