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Quick Tip: The “Fast Food” Rule


The “Fast Food” Rule

What is the “Fast Food” rule for trainers, presenters, and facilitators? It’s a way to clarify participant comments while retaining your neutrality.
Have you ever asked a facilitator a question, just to have it repeated back to you, incorrectly?

Here’s a true-life example:

Bob: I need to take a break.
Facilitator: What I hear you saying, Bob, is that you’re feeling a little down today, perhaps a bit overloaded and frustrated with this process.

GUYS! We’re not therapists here! To retain our own integrity and that of our participants, we must adhere to the “Fast Food Rule.” When a participant makes a comment that is difficult to hear or understand, replicate as exactly as possible what he or she said. Strip this “playback” of any inference or attempts at interpretation.
Two Examples:

Bob: Give me a burger and fries.

Me: You want a burger and fries. Did I get that right?


Bob: I need to take a break.

Me: Bob, I hear you saying you need to take a break. Did I get that right?

When you use the speaker’s own words, you show respect for the insight, while clarifying the comment to the rest of the group. Importantly, you also retain your neutrality. The more fiery your meetings or presentations are, the more the “Fast Food Rule” helps you stay on track.

The Fast Food Rule is an essential facilitator skill. There are eight others. With your team, learn and practice them all in Guila’s 1-Day Facilitation Skills workshop.


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