Reflective Log

A reflective log is an area of reflective practice in the form of a facilitated discussion to capture people's experience of their involvement in specific groups or projects to highlight areas for improvement.

Reflective log sessions are held at regular intervals throughout the lifetime of a group or project to highlight areas for ongoing improvement.

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How to do it

  • Hold sessions while experience is still fresh in everyone’s minds.
  • Include all who are involved in group or project.
  • Appoint a facilitator to help draw out answers and insights and to keep the discussion focussed. Ideally this should be someone not directly involved in the group or project so they can be objective but nevertheless have a good understanding of issues.
  • Appoint a note taker to record main points and actions for the feedback report. This should be someone who is not participating in the discussion.
  • Set ground rules for the meeting e.g. respect other people’s point of view, an expectation that all should take part, a need for openness and honesty, confirm that individuals will not be identified in the feedback report.
  • Reflect on what has worked well, not worked so well, and what improvements can be made.
  • Identify specific actions to take forward to make improvements to how people are
    involved in group or project.

Pros

  • Reflective log sessions do not require a lot of advance preparation.
  • A flexible approach can be taken so the session can be formal or informal, shorter or longer.
  • They can be tailored to the needs of a specific group or project.
  • Improvements can be made immediately and on an ongoing basis rather than waiting until the end of a group or project.
  • They focus on improvement and not on a list of complaints, assign blame or critique individuals.

Cons

  • Skilled facilitation is required to ensure that everyone takes part and contributes to the discussion.
  • Some people may not feel comfortable speaking out in a group session.

Resources

  • A meeting space large enough for all members of group
  • Flipcharts and pens to record the key points and action

Top Tips

  • Distribute questions in advance so people know what is to be discussed to enable them to prepare for the session.
  • Write the questions on flipchart sheets before the meeting. Comments can be written on the sheets throughout the session.