Participatory planning for short-term projects and events – 1 day course.

Download course overview (pdf)

Please visit our public courses calendar to see upcoming dates and locations for this course. Alternatively, contact us for more information about booking this course as an in-house course for your organisation.

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Who this course is for

This course has no pre-requisite, but Group Facilitation Methods or some prior experience of facilitation or participatory planning is recommended.

It is suitable for all those who want to be able to involve people more effectively in planning and implementing short to medium term projects together, including team leaders and project managers within organisations, those working collaboratively with partners and external stakeholders, youth and community workers and independent facilitators.


“I found the Action Planning course very practical and useful, and have used the method with young people and youth work organisations across Northern Ireland” - Alexey Janes, YouthBank Development, Officer Community Foundation for Northern Ireland


“Action Planning is an excellent course - I found it simple and effective to put into practice” - Dr. Clive Downs, Visiting Research Fellow, The Open University and Research & Information Officer, Reading Borough Council


"The Action Planning Workshop really energised a rather jaded group and produced a workable and accepted plan to raise morale in the department" - Ruth Foss, Facilitation Team, Axa Sun Life plc, Bristol.

Questions this course answers

“How can I get all members of a group to participate in planning a project or event together, and build their commitment and responsibility so that they can successfully implement their plan?”

This course introduces a structured, participatory process to enable the successful implementation of a group project or event.

The Action Planning method uses the basic Focused Conversation and Consensus Workshop methods to engage all members of a group effectively, and so it builds commitment and ownership at all stages. The method is suitable for planning short to medium-term projects, or completing projects that have stalled.

What you will gain

By the end of the course you will have

  • understood the 8 stages of the Dynamic Action Planning method, the role of each, and their flow
  • understood where to use the method, and gained confidence in your ability to use it in your own situation
  • consolidated and developed your understanding of the basic Focused Conversation and Consensus Workshop methods
  • built links with others to promote future collaboration and support in the use of the methods

The Dynamic Action Planning method is an 8-stage process:


  1. Context – reviewing the background and outlining the process
  2. Victory - focusing the group by visualising the successfully completed task
  3. Current Reality - analysing the situation to align the group’s resources with its task
  4. Commitment - defining and articulating exactly what the group aims to accomplish
  5. Key actions - identifying key implementation steps and forming teams or task forces
  6. Calendar - building an action timeline
  7. Assignments – agreeing leadership, co-ordination and follow-through roles
  8. Resolve – affirming and celebrating the group’s plan

Download Action Planning Method overview (pdf)

Learning style

The course presents the method in a practical and participatory way. The method is first demonstrated, using a scenario with which participants can identify without having to role-play. It is then analysed and discussed, and then elements of the method are practiced individually or in small groups. Finally, participants plan how they will apply the method in their own situations.

What do participants say about this course?

87% of AP participants rated this course 8/10 or higher.

Comments from participants’ end-of-course evaluations included:

  • gives you a structured and effective method for action planning, in a relaxed and enjoyable training environment
  • an interactive and fun way to involve everyone on your team in the planning process
  • a very useful course for planning short-term projects or events
  • rewarding and insightful, it will demonstrate to you how you can get things done – and it is a great experience and a great environment
  • brilliant – the best training course I’ve ever been on

Check our course dates or Book now.

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