All in Exercises

Sometimes a group will struggle to understand its challenge. The challenge will feel overwhelming because as soon as they focus on one part of the problem they quickly realise that there are other, just as challenging parts to work on.

Creating the environments where a group can wrestle with that complexity and also develop some form of ‘understanding’ about their problem is one of the many jobs of the Facilitation Team. The activity ‘Create-The-Game’ does just that. It is a way to have participants dive into their problems by creating games. Making these games allows the group to develop a new insight into what their problems are really about. Problems are there to be solved, right? That’s similar to how games are meant to be won?

Create-The-Game is a great example of how you can generate new insight into a problem by re-framing it. In the case of this activity that insight is gained by having the group design, build, and play a game that is focussed on ‘winning’ over their challenge.

Design is the process of aligning desire and constraint. Somewhere in that process trade offs will inevitably be made. We can’t have it all and we have to compromise in some way. Learning how to compromise is hard enough for individuals. Now try it in a group where the desires of others can appear arbitrary and unaccounted for.

Groups that find ways to productively compromise are at an advantage to groups that cannot. Those groups can make better decisions, can make them faster and a much more likely to follow through.

How to find a common language

A significant, but usually hidden, impediment to effective collaboration is when people use the same words but mean different things. Finding ways to surface and resolve these different meanings is an important step to building an effective culture of collaboration.