A facilitator’s role is similar to that of an orchestra conductor: gently guiding a group of talented individuals so that the best in the group can rise up.

What is a facilitator?
A facilitator orchestrates change.

A facilitator’s role is like that of an orchestra conductor. A maestro brings together a mix of musicians, just as a facilitator brings together leaders and teams. The role of the conductor is to highlight the individual parts and blend the sounds so that the piece is cohesive, resonating as a piece of music to the listener. The role of the facilitator is to structure group processes and meetings so that individual points of view can be heard and validated, while moving the group towards decisions on key priorities.

“The great leaders are like the best conductors…
they reach beyond the notes to reach the magic in the players.”

– Blaine Lee

A facilitator is like a conductor as she guides a group of talented individuals so that the best in the group can rise up. A facilitator understands her role through clear communication with leaders, just as a conductor would have a clear vision of her desired outcome for the score. A facilitator asks questions and guides discussion and interactions among participants with structure and guidelines that encourage everyone to participate without one person dominating or derailing the objective of the meeting. The structure of the meeting and gentle guidance of the facilitator helps groups to respect individual contributions and work collaboratively to make decisions. Both maestro and facilitator encourage individuals to contribute to the group’s symphony.


About Michele

Michele Lis, results-oriented facilitator, problem-solver and strategic planning consultant.Michele Lis, Principal

Michele is a results-oriented facilitator and problem-solver whose personal mission is to help leaders sort out key dilemmas and capitalize on opportunities for growth.

Michele has a master’s degree is in Adult Education from Cornell University where her research culminated in a thesis on the impact of education on social change, outlining educators’ perspectives on a critical and compassionate pedagogy. She has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from State University of New York at Geneseo.

With over 25 years’ management and facilitation experience in both the public and private sector, Michele’s background includes manager, trainer and administrator positions at several nonprofit organizations in New York and New Mexico including Homewise, Inc., Santa Fe Community College, and at OptumHealth New Mexico. She has taught several credit and non-credit courses and workshops at local colleges and at national conferences. A volunteer for the Santa Fe Public Schools, Michele has been appointed to the SFPS Budget Advisory Committee, School Advisory Committee and was co-founder of PLANE, the Parent Legislative Action Network for Education.


Current and Past Clients

Bernalillo Public Schools
Farmington Municipal Schools
Grants Cibola County Schools
New Mexico School for the Arts
Saint Michael’s High School
Santa Fe Preparatory School
Santa Fe Public Schools
Communities in Schools of New Mexico
Cooperative Educational Services

Big Brothers Big Sisters Mountain Region
CHRISTUS St. Vincent Regional Medical Center – Community Health Department
Homewise, Inc.
National Dance Institute
Recovery Inside Out
The Food Depot
United Way of Santa Fe County

CHRISTUS St. Vincent Regional Medical Center – Community Health Department
Mesa Verde Foundation
Santa Fe Community Foundation

Campo Conejos Neighborhood Association
City of Santa Fe – Child and Youth Commission
Institute for Integrative Health
OptumHealth New Mexico
Santa Fe County – Community Services, Senior Services, and DWI Programs
Santa Fe Restaurant Association
Site Santa Fe
State of New Mexico – Children, Youth and Families Division, Department of Health and Behavioral Health Services Division