Want to walk through a team building workshop?

Last week I held a small team building workshop, and we had a great time building a vision of an ideal team together. Here are some of the pieces they built, individually and then together:

Uptima.LSP.TrustFall4  Trust

Uptima.LSP.SafeSpace  Safe Space

Uptima.LSP.Communication  Communication (the bubbles are the ways people project themselves and perceive others)

Uptima.LSP.MindsTogether Many minds getting together to think creatively (especially the guy with the great ideas coming out of his head)

Uptima.LSP.Foundation Strong foundation, and Clearly defined roles

Uptima.LSP.Vision Vision (the open window) with mobility (wheels) behind it

Uptima.LSP.Resources Resources

Uptima.LSP.Goals Shared goals, with clear steps to get there

Not pictured: flexibility, listening, needing face time, and a second communication model featuring a tower.

Then these pieces were put together. Some, like the two communications and the listening, were put together into once piece.


The strong foundation merged with the safe space, and the plants from both the resources and the safe space were spread about the model to make it all safe and accessible. Plus the creative melding of the minds was also put into this same space, with vision on top.


The trust fall was combined with the clear headed leader:


Here is a top view of the whole model:


People joked that the workhorse holding up the communication tower was the IT department. The tower showing flexibility and the ability to pivot according to new information (top right) is next to the prow of the boat pointing in the direction that vision says to go.

At the end of the workshop I asked everyone what they had learned. Here are some of the answers:

“We got better ideas together than if any one of us worked alone.”

“After a long time as a freelancer I remember what it’s like to be part of a team.”

“What we created was greater than the sum of the parts.”

“This showed the power of teamwork. It’s more fun to play with other people. And power comes when we work together.”

Are you getting all the best ideas from your group? Is your team greater than the sum of it’s parts?


Creative Thinking

Everyone is talking about how to find creative solutions to today’s problems. We can’t see the solution with the same thinking that got us into the situation. I found this article on Creative Thinking that talks about how to break out of the box our brains like to think in.

Of course, LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® also helps people see things in a new and different way – through our hands, through interesting questions to answer, through interacting with each other – so you can find new and innovative solutions.

OK, enough talk. Want a game? Tell me, which of these words doesn’t fit? (There’s no right or wrong answer, I just made up these four words off the top of my head.)

Color; Suspicion; Table; Walkabout

Let me know what you think in the comments!

When LEGO® helped make a movie

A while back I did a LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® workshop with a group of people who were making a documentary about the Bayview and Hunters Point neighborhoods in San Francisco. They had a lot of footage, and a lot of ideas about what to focus on, and who else to film, but they were having a hard time figuring out how to make it all jell. It’s possible to look at all the disadvantages, violence, crime, environmental harm, etc., or to look at the way the community comes together, tries to make things better, grows community gardens, etc.

So, I worked with them to build a LEGO® model about all the things that were important to incorporate into the movie. In the end, we had a model with a clear story line running through it. The model looked like this:


And the movie looks like this:


Can you see the resemblance? 😉

I’m honored to have helped with this movie, even a tiny bit. I know the people who made it worked hard, cared a lot, and came together to make something amazing.