This is the first in a series of posts focusing on case studies and companies that have used LEGO Serious Play to help solve real challenges they were facing.
First up is a case study from 2014 that focuses on improving Team Culture. Pivotal Play (the company I run) were engaged by a large Professional Services firm in Australia to work with one of their high performing teams.
The very successful team was facing a new challenge. They had recently lost some of their middle managers and communication between different levels within the team had suffered. It wasn't impacting performance yet, but it had the potential to derail the firm's most profitable group.
What We Did
Working with all levels in the group, Pivotal Play helped define and clarify what the problem was.
We ran a team workshop using LEGO Serious Play with the whole group. As part of the session we asked individuals to build LEGO models that represented their team environment as they saw it at the present moment. We got them to combine and integrate their individual models to get an overall picture of how the team saw the current state. This allowed everyone to have buy in and come to a common understanding of what the problems were.
We also asked them to build the team environment that would empower them in the future. The future state they would like see. Again combining individual models to build a shared vision.
The final step was filling in the gap, building what they needed to do as individuals and as a group to move from their current team environment to that shared vision of their future team environment.
With LEGO bricks we got all these issues on the table, where everyone felt comfortable discussing them. Leaders got to hear different perspectives and juniors got to understand the challenges faced by leadership. In the end the team co-created their own solution and an action plan to make it happen.
Group wide, positive feedback on how the underlying issues were brought up and addressed. Everyone was engaged and felt they had input in to the solution, creating powerful buy in.
New initiatives were put in place both officially and from a grass roots level. Stronger mentoring, juniors taking more initiative, greater knowledge sharing and group learning, more agile and nimble work arrangements and open communication between levels.
An issue that had the potential to derail a high performing team was instead turned into an opportunity to engage the team and drive even more success.
Team Culture is just one challenge that can be tackled using the LEGO Serious Play method. In future posts we'll look at how it can be used in other areas such as strategic planning, a Lean Start Up environment, for on boarding / induction and in education.
About the Author
Michael Fearne is the founder of Pivotal Play. An unconventional consultancy helping companies to solve problems and create more meaningful conversations through the power of LEGO Serious Play.