8 visual check-ins to invite creative presence

How do we create the conditions in our meetings so that we can be fully present together and tap into our creative capacities?

Check-ins are an important part of life within Percolab and working and being with others. They are collective moments to stop, reflect, share and become present. In my experience, they are also very helpful to move us away from analytical thinking when working in creativity and innovation. They are invitations for people to step into a creative mindset.

Over the past few years, as part of our check-in process with the team and within projects with clients and partners, we have developed and experimented with a number of different visual methods that can gently host us into a space of collective presence and creativity:

1. Quick blind draw

Materials

  • 4 index cards per person
  • Pens (enough for one each)

Method

  1. Each person takes between 4 index cards and a marker
  2. Ask the group to stand and mix up
  3. Ask them to find a partner
  4. Start a 30 second timer
  5. At the same time, each person looks at their partner in the eyes and draws their face on the index card. Without looking at the card!
  6. When the times up, each person gives the card upside down to their partner (the partner hides it at the bottom of their picture
  7. Repeat 3 times (so each person has 4 pictures of themselves)
  8. Everyone returns to their place and looks at their picture
  9. Ask each person to select a picture that resonates with how they see themselves
  10. Write their names on it
  11. Create a gallery

2. In One Line

Materials needed

  • Pens (enough for one each)
  • Paper (A4 or letter works well)

Method

  1. Make sure everyone has access to a piece of plain paper and a marker.
  2. Ask that everyone only draws one continuous line in a short time period (say 30 seconds)
  3. Ask that everyone shares at the same time (hold it in front of them and keep it there)
  4. Give a moment to look around the circle to see what has been drawn
  5. Ask for a quick explanation for why they drew what they drew.

Modifications

  • Ask everyone to select a color that resonates with them at that moment and then when sharing ask to talk about their drawing and why that color.

Example questions

  • How are you arriving today?
  • What energy are you bringing with you?
  • How do you feel about X project/topic?

3. Mark the paper

 

This process works well when dealing with creativity and innovation, with those who feel less comfortable drawing, as it pushes people to make a mark on a sheet. Also works well when working with large groups split up into smaller tables.

Materials needed

  • Large sheet of paper on the table(s)
  • Pens (enough for one each)

Method

  1. Ask everyone to write their name on the sheet
  2. Then to draw something that resonates with their name
  3. Ask the groups to share within their table
  4. For a larger group, you can invite one or two tables to share what they see emerge, or speaks to them

4. Squiggle Birds

Materials needed

  • Pens
  • Paper

Method

  1. Draw a squiggle on your paper
  2. Turn it into a bird by first adding feet like sticks
  3. Then look at it and decide where you want the head to be
  4. Draw some eyes and give it a very simple tail feather

Example questions

  • How is your squiggle bird arriving at this meeting?

5. Pick a Card

Materials

  • Set of cards
    Example: Percolab circle cards

Method

  1. Lay the cards out in the group.
  2. Ask people to choose one and turn it over.
  3. Ask some questions around the card choice, like “Why did you choose that colour or card?”

Example questions

  • What are you noticing when you look at the image (or see the picture)?
  • What does it say to you?”

6. Answer in image

Materials

  • Large paper (big enough for everyone)
  • Pens

Method

  1. Put a big piece of paper in the middle of the group.
  2. Make sure everyone has a marker
  3. Ask a question like “How are you arriving today?” or “What’s important for you today?”.  Everyone draws in response at the same time.
  4. Stand back and see what’s been drawn
  5. Go around and ask for people to share something about their image

7. Quick Find

Works well with distance teams i.e. via zoom or skype

Materials

  • Access to computer (ideally laptop) or smart phone

Method

  1. Use Google as your image bank.
  2. Think of an idea or your project and search for an image that represents something about it you’d like to share.
  3. Remember to give yourself a short time to search, otherwise you might fall into the internet and never come back! We suggest a one minute timer.
  4. Have each person share their image

8. Body talk

Materials

  • Paper and pens

Method

  1. Draw a body — it can be a stick or star person.
  2. What does the head, heart, arms and legs have to say?  Write this on your paper — either as a group exercise on a big sheet of paper or on individual sheets.
  3. Share around the group.

Visual check-ins help to bring people into innovation and creativity in a light way. Feel free to play around with these suggestions. Try them out with your team. Each of these are easily adaptable to the situation and context, as well as the needs and purpose of the meeting or the event. You have some other similar practices you would like to share? we would love to hear from you.

If you want to discover how Visual Thinking can relate to your business, project or ideas, join online in the VISUAL THINKING LAB, starting June 28, 2017.

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L’art du débat en mode dialogue

Comment travaille-t-on dans le débat quand on est une organisation qui pratique le dialogue?

À la récente Nuit des débats, qui se tenait le même soir à Montréal, Paris et Dakar, Percolab a apporté cette question aux deux débats que nous avons tenu.  Notre hypothèse est que pour qu’un débat puisse se dérouler sur le mode d’une conversation constructive qui accueille la diversité des perspectives il faut créer des conditions.

Le choc des récits: Montréal vue de l’intérieur et de l’extérieur

Dans le premier débat nous avons invité les participants à s’identifier comme « insider » ou « outsider » sur un spectre. Les gens se sont positionnés et se sont racontés l‘histoire de leur positionnement. Nous avons découvert que dans tout le groupe seulement deux personnes étaient nées à Montréal! Dans un second temps, nous avons invité chaque personne à identifier deux choses appréciées de leur ville et deux choses qu’ils n’aiment pas, et à les écrire. Les personnes présentes sont ensuite venus placer leurs réponses, en les lisant à haute voix. La table était mise ; nous nous connaissions un peu et nous avons vu la diversité des perspectives sur la même ville, dans la salle. Certains adorent la neige et le froid et d’autre les détestent. Le « débat » qui s’en est suivi avait plus la saveur d’une conversation collective. Et pourtant des choses profondes et parfois difficiles se sont dites durant les 90 minutes.

C’est ce qui se passe quand on met en rencontre des expériences de la diversité Montréalaise. Nous portons tous en nous les deux pôles des récits sur le ville: nous tenons tous le positif et le négatif. Cette soirée a été l’occasion d’explorer cette dualité en chacun de nous et de jeter un nouveau regard sur nos expériences de la ville sous cet angle.

Le second débat était centré autour de la question de l’autogestion comme faux remède ou vrai soutien  nos problèmes de société, et a permis d’explorer quelques-uns des décalages et le paradigme de l’auto-gestion, encore méconnu. Vous êtes curieux d’en savoir plus sur ce dernier point? Venez participer à notre atelier sur l’autre-gestion le 4 mai prochain à Santropol Roulant…

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Et si le salaire minimum passait à 15$/h?

En faisant la synthèse des trois modes de pensées qui sont le design, l’apprentissage et la stratégie, percolab a accompagné l’économiste, Ianik Marcil et un influenceur pour concevoir une communication graphique qui mets en lumière les principaux enjeux liés à l’augmentation du salaire minimum.

 

SalaireMinimumv1-1-1

 

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