I’m more and more aware of how non-linear most great meetings are. Some of the most satisfying conversations and facilitations I’ve been involved in lately have rambled around a lot especially at the start. I’ve trained myself to feel comfortable with the discomfort this sometimes causes.
I think processes like open space and dynamic faciliation work by making it easy for groups of people to explore what moves them without getting stuck to the “agreed” agenda (such agreement often being fairly passive).
I went back in my archives and found my post from last year about the waterfall model of problem-solving. I have to admit I still rather like it.