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#7 Use your opening activity to model your whole programme


Client Enquiry:

We have an external workshop planned and I want my management team on the one hand to be open for new ideas and also to share these new ideas, and on the other hand to be sensitive to how we communicate towards customers and employees in the future. What activities can you recommend? I am thinking of using an ice-breaker where they will compete to create the most ideas.


RSVP Design Response

There are a lot of things to explore here, and there are a number of activities that could be used to approach elements of what is described. The opening activity will be important and can set the tone for the rest of the programme. Be careful about starting a programme with a competition if one of the learning outcomes is to encourage people to share more - competition generally decreases cooperation and sharing! Id be inclined to open the programme in a way that encourages people to examine their mindset and hopefully become open to alternatives - a key part of a creative process.


For example Challenging Assumptions is an ideal opening activity to put people in a strong frame of mind to consider some new ideas, and how being open to new ideas can create breakthroughs.


Images of Organisations and Dialoogle cards can be used at various points to stimulate good quality discussions but also to create new insights and ideas.


Seeing the Point is a great example of how to do more with less, and what being truly creative can do in terms of performance.


Voyage Mapping would be a great way to end and plan the various journeys that individuals and groups should take to be successful based on their learning from the external workshop.


 Tip #7

Be careful to choose an opening activity or ice-breaker that really models what you want in terms of learning from the programme. For example if being open to sharing ideas and cooperation is an important concept, then don start the programme with a competition within the group. Why not choose or create an activity that actually shows the benefits of cooperation, or at least ensures that the competition is related to the performance of the whole group and not between individuals or teams within it? See the blog entry on Is this ice-breaker appropriate for other things to check your opening activity against.

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