Better meetings for strategy and planning

In-person or online • Ben Crothers Ben Crothers

Learn how to lead better strategy sessions and offsites, to clarify your vision, purpose, success, and direction.


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Lead the way to better strategy

  • Are you struggling to formulate strategy as a group?
  • Are you focusing too much on the what and not enough on the why?
  • Are meeting participants confused about the goal of the meeting?
  • Do you struggle to guide groups of people in meetings who are more senior than you?

This class will equip you to:

  • Plan and run better strategy meetings, conversations and offsites, to clarify your vision, purpose, success, and direction.
  • Develop stronger strategy with smart questions, plus a range of frameworks and templates.
  • Identify and improve weak points that often get in the way of great strategy and planning.
  • Help your groups create the right outputs they'll need to make decisions, articulate their strategy, turn it into a plan, and measure their impact.

Unlock your team’s genius

Whether you’re at a startup, a school, in government or a multinational enterprise, your team will need help working out where to play and how to win.

This class is great for:

  • Managers who want to demonstrate collaborative leadership
  • Project managers and program managers who need to wrangle multi-disciplinary teams
  • Facilitators who want to add to their toolkit
  • Change managers who have to help teams tackle large tricky programs of work
  • Scrum masters, agile coaches and agile practitioners who want to improve their teams' ways of working

Serious value for serious leaders

You’re investing in your success as a meeting leader. We take that investment seriously, by packing serious value into this class.

This class gives you access to:

  • 2-3 hours of real-time interactive instruction
  • Your questions answered throughout the class time
  • PDF templates to use with your team after the class
  • On-demand video option included for free
  • An ongoing community of changemakers on the Bright Pilots Slack channel

Class outline

Here’s what you can expect from the live online class.

1. Introductions and expectations

Introducing your instructor; expectations from attendees and expectations of involvement; class content overview.

2. Are we doing strategy yet?

Introduction to facilitating strategy meetings; the elements of strategy, and relating these elements to achieving great strategic discussions in meetings.

3. Playing strategy as a team sport

Introduction to facilitating strategy meetings; the elements of strategy, and relating these elements to achieving great strategic discussions in meetings.

4. Strategic discussions 1: Context

Suggested activities to help groups to understand where they're at, extract insight, and know what to focus on.

5. Strategic discussions 2: Aspiration

Suggested activities to help groups to establish a point of view about their purpose, who they are and where they want to be in the future.

6. Strategic discussions 3: Solution

Suggested activities to help groups to articulate where to play, and how to win, as well as the capabilities and systems needed to win.

7. Strategic discussions 4: Execution

Suggested activities to help groups formulate the main chunks of work (i.e. strategic objectives or priorities) needed to achieve their strategy.

8. Wrapping up

Recapping the main points in the class, final Q&A, as well as some next steps and resources.

Featured review

“Ben’s strategy and planning better meetings class was practical and enlightening. I took away some valuable templates and really enjoyed the workshop. Thanks Ben!”

Christina Cawkell, Senior Account Manager, OPF Consulting

That was exactly what I was looking for, to boost my facilitation, critical thinking and leadership skills!

Carlos Padilha - Enterprise Agile Coach

Practical course with great ideas on strategy and planning. Ben shares his wide knowledge and experience freely and kept me engaged the whole time.

Lita Currie, Director

It was a really really good session and I got a heap of value from it!

Andrew Bird, Director, Foundstone Advisory

An accessible and engaging class with some instantly actionable frameworks anyone can use as they traverse the complex setting and execution of strategy for an organisation.

Digital Media Senior Product Manager

Highly recommended strategy and planning workshop especially to those new to the field! I particularly liked the use of the easy mnemomic of making the CASE for strategy. Genius!

Shirley Ha

Excellent course. Containing a tremendous amount of first-rate material. Ben is a fantastic facilitator, making me feel very welcome. I thoroughly enjoyed the course, which was engaging, thought provoking & highly practical.

Mark Woodyatt

Your instructor: Ben Crothers

Ben is currently Principal Facilitator at Bright Pilots, and spends a lot of his time teaching design techniques, running strategic workshops, and helping teams be more creative and to focus on the right things.

About us

Ben Crothers

We’ve boosted capacity in loads of teams...

Here are some organisations that Bright Pilots has been privileged to run training sessions and masterclasses for:

Client logos of EY, Target and EbayClient logos of Commonwealth Bank and ZipClient logos of Atlassian, ABC and LIDAClient logos of iCare and OrofolClient logos of Nine Network and Aurora EnergyClient logos of Canva, City University of New York and CSIROClient logos of The Benevolent Society and Telstra

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Got questions? Here are some answers

We conduct these classes either in-person or online, according to what your requirements are. We are based in Sydney (Australia) so in-person is great, but there are many reasons why we conduct classes online via Zoom too. for example, clients sometimes want to include people from several offices, so we make it online.
Each training class typically runs for 3 hours. If it takes place online, we ensure we schedule 2 quick breaks throughout the 3 hours, to keep everybody fresh.
We try to limit each class to 10 people, to ensure everyone gets enough interaction and opportunity to discuss and ask questions. If you have more than 10 people to train, we suggest booking several separate sessions.

No, training attendees don’t have to all work together. Each class is geared to cover several specific learning outcomes common to anyone and everyone attending. Often classes include time for each attendee to work on their own example individually.

However, we can always tailor team training classes to include time for attendees to work together on common challenges.

Yes, we can and do bundle several training classes together. We can also tailor sets of classes to cover your specific learning outcomes or staff development goals.

For online classes, we use the videoconferencing platform Zoom, which you can use via your web browser, or download here. Some clients prefer us to use MS Teams; this is also fune, provided you can invite us to your Team space.

We sometimes use other applications like Mentimeter, Mural or Miro, which you should be able to access and use via your web browser.

If you’re attending one of our drawing classes, you’ll need something to draw with, and something to draw on. We recommend a fine black marker (e.g. Artline200 Fineliner 0.4) or similar. For this sort of drawing, it’s best not to use Sharpies, as they are too thick, and they bleed through regular paper. For the paper, a blank sketchbook is great, but plain ol’ blank office paper is perfectly fine.

Drawing on a digital tablet is great too, and using other markers and pencils (e.g. tint markers like Tombow or Copic, and colour pencils) is also fab.

The only preparation you usually need to do is to complete a brief online pre-class questionnaire. We send out the link to all attendees a few days prior to the class. This questionnaire helps everyone to think more about what they’d like to get most out of the class, plus it helps us to know what to focus on.

We also encourage all attendees to think ahead about (and capture somewhere) how they think they’d like to apply what they learn from the class. For example, there might be specific types of meetings, or a specific project they are working on, where they would like to improve.

Be sure to read the class outline above, to give you a sense of the structure and content of this class. If you have any questions after reading this, we’re more than happy to help, and you can drop us a line.

We’re all about involving everyone in an engaging productive way in all our classes, so all classes are pretty interactive.

Our classes have a range of practical and conversational activities, ranging from simple icebreakers to individual hands-on exercises, to discussions in groups of 2, 3 or 4. There will also be time for Q&A throughout the class, and at the end as well.

Some classes’ activities also include using an online canvas (like Mural or Miro), which all class participants use together.

We take your decision to invest in your staff seriously, so we prefer to agree on – and invoice for – a minimum number of staff who are committed to attending the training class, and we charge per attendee.

We understand that sometimes things come up and plans need to change. If this is the case, you will receive a seat credit for anyone who accepted the invitation to the training, but didn’t attend. You can use this seat credit towards another class, and it’s valid for up to 12 months from the original class date.

You can cancel any registered attendees by name within 2 days of the scheduled class, and receive a full refund. If the invoice is already paid, we will arrange the refund to be paid back within 7 business days of submitting your cancellation request. To cancel, simply contact us here, or email

Yes, we do provide discounts to attendee numbers over 15. We also provide a discount for registered non-profit organisations at 25% off the regular per-seat attendee rate.

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