March 6, 2014 Leave a comment
The following Creativity tool stimulates the ideation activity of Brainstorming and enables people to express ideas and beliefs non-verbally, even if they cannot or will not do it orally. This is especially beneficial for developing visions of the business, system, or organization. It should also be used when defining, especially complex products or processes.
The Creativity tool allows each team to draw pictorial answers about a specific question or to provide solutions for a specific scenario. It frequently takes less time than narrative capture. If you use this tool early during the workshop, you can mount visually stimulating wallpaper that participants will refer to later. Since teams rather than individuals generate the results, you provide timid participants permission to speak freely by enabling them to defend or explain what their teams created. Complete the following:
- Divide the group into smaller teams of three to five people. Watch the mix of people—plan how you want to mix them.
- Explain what they will be doing and provide a visual prompt of the question(s) that need to be answered. Examples:
- Draw a picture of how the organization looks today.
- Draw a picture of how you would like the organization or system to look in the future.
- Draw your vision of where you are going with the business or system.
- (illustrative) Provide answers to the question, “What do you expect to get out of this class?”
- You can use one or more of the above examples or your own. If you have the teams draw pictures of both today and the future, you empower them with the ability to compare and contrast.
- Provide a time limit, flip chart paper, and colored markers.
- When finished, have each team present their drawing(s). Consider using the Bookend tool for identifying commonalities and items that may be extremely unique. Keep the drawings mounted on the wall and do NOT mark on them.
- Separately, capture their narrative explanations and feed back and confirm that the narrative reflections are accurate and complete.
This exercise is powerful in drawing out beliefs and ideas. Use it effectively by knowing how you are going to use the output.
Become Part of the Solution, Improve Your Facilitation Skills
The FAST curriculum on Professional Facilitation Skills details the responsibilities and dynamics mentioned above. Remember, nobody is smarter than everybody, so consult your FAST Facilitator Reference Manual or attend a FAST professional facilitative leadership training workshop offered around the world (see MG Rush for a current schedule — an excellent way to earn 40 PDUs from PMI, CDUs from IIBA, or CEUs).
Do not forget to order Change or Die if you working on a business process improvement project. It provides detailed workshop agendas and detailed tools to make your role easier and your team’s performance a lot more effective—daring you to embrace the will, wisdom, and activities that amplify a facilitative leader.