What is a community of practice?
A group of people who share a common interest, purpose, profession and/or identity that engages in regular, ongoing inquiry, practice, action and reflection to develop collective intelligence and skills in that domain and even work to advance a professional practice.
Communities of practice are referred to by many names including learning networks, community dojos, guilds, community labs, and community cafe’s. They all relate to the same concept.
Joining a community of practice is a powerful and effective way to advance your career. This is because you get the opportunity to network, skill-build, receive mentorship, and collaborate with other people in your field in an exploratory environment where it’s safe to make mistakes. At Facilitation Jobs we are all about professional development, so to help you on your journey we’ve created the Ultimate guide to Facilitation Communities of Practice.
A Comprehensive List of Facilitation Communities of Practice
I update this list whenever I find new communities. This numbered list is NOT in order of importance. Last Update: February 2023.
1. Mid-Atlantic Facilitators Network
MAFN offers a place for facilitators of all levels to improve their skills and knowledge, gain practical experience, discover new tools/approaches, and connect with like-minded professionals for learning and business opportunities.
2. Southeast Association of Facilitators
SEAF offers invaluable professional development opportunities for anyone who spends time planning and coordinating meetings, whether they’re a full-time, part-time or aspiring facilitator, or have never even heard of the term “facilitation.”
3. National Coalition for Dialogue and Deliberation
NCDD serves as a gathering place, a resource center, a news source, and a facilitative leader for an active community of practice centered around the practices of dialogue and deliberation.
4. ToP Network
ToP Network is a membership-based association that connects and supports ToP practitioners in order to improve and expand the use of ToP methods. Technology of Participation (ToP) is a powerful collection of facilitation methods that transform the way groups think, talk and work together.
5. Voltage Control - Facilitation Lab
Facilitation Lab is a weekly virtual meetup focused on helping facilitators hone their craft to help improve the quality of meetings.
6. Strozzi Institute - Community Dojo
Our Online Community Dojo gathering is a place of learning and growth. During our time together, we will build specific somatic skills to embody our fullest potential.
7. Meeting Innovation Community
This community is for people who are working to make it easy for teams to run successful meetings every day. We believe that great meetings are crucial to great teamwork. Here, we share resources, run experiments, connect with experts, and innovate together.
8. Forward Better Teams Community
As a member of the Better Teams Community, you’ll be joining some of the most experienced professionals in the field of team building and facilitation. Together, we’ll hear from industry experts, practice new tools and technologies, share what’s working today and how we see things evolving, and talk through challenges we face.
9. Facilitator Cards
When you buy Facilitator Cards you become part of our community of facilitators and receive resources & support to help you thrive. From virtual facilitation guides, to meeting strategies, and exclusive trainings just for card-carriers.
10. Authentic Revolution - Connect Community
Join COnnect members from all over the world to engage in growth-oriented events that will inspire you, develop your communication skills, and nourish your soul with deep connection and community.
11. Art of Hosting - Community Calls
Community calls to nourish the field of practitioners. This is a cycle of online calls, with a monthly rhythm. During each call, there will be a deeper dive into one key aspect of the Art of Hosting DNA, guided by a steward who holds that practice dearly.
12. The International Association of Facilitators
The International Association of Facilitators (IAF) welcomes everyone with an interest in facilitation and its widespread use in helping people work together effectively.
IAF members vary in their facilitation practice. Some are new to the field, while others have years of experience. Our members work in government, corporate, non-profit, education, community, and international development sectors, to name but a few. Some work in-house, others operate as external consultants.
*IAF is one of the OLDEST facilitation associations around. They are the true OG of the facilitation world. IAF is less of a community of practice and more of a global network of facilitators. I’m adding IAF to honor their legacy in the facilitation field.
13. Evolutionary Futures Lab
Evolutionary Futures Lab is a California-based social enterprise that enables learning and collective action for systems transformation through educational programs and community-centered strategic initiatives.
*This community is a geared towards Change Facilitators who want to specialize in Systems Thinking and Systemic Change.
14. Mural Community
Join the Mural Community to connect with collaboration experts from around the globe. Learn best practices, ask questions, discover new templates, and more!
15. Miro Community
The Miro Online Community is a place where Miro users can validate ideas, share knowledge and expertise, give guidance and insight, connect and engage with each Miro users, and get support.
A warm and safe space for facilitators to find community and inspiration to grow their skills to the next level.
17. AJ&Smart - Facilitator Club
The community for Facilitators, or those interested in becoming a Facilitator, to get together and share insights, resources, and advice!
18. The School of Facilitation - Community Pods
Join the monthly SOF Community pod. This is a place for facilitators, trainers, coaches or consultants where we explore topics around clients, learners, you or your business.
19. L&D Shakers
Our purpose is to enable Learning & Development Professionals to shake their personal and professional development, their organizations, communities, and the L&D world.
*This community is geared towards L&D Facilitators (also known as Professional or Leadership Development Facilitators, which often work within the Human Resource division of a company.)
20. The Emergence Dialogue Lab
In the Emergent Dialogue Lab, you can further develop in your capacity to support emergence — and meet in the enlivening intimacy of intersubjective dialogue.