by Jennifer Thompson, ambassador for Deviant Thinking
Yet again we were invited to a large divisional meeting to discuss how we could recreate our design process for our team.The team gather around, all 200 of us, for a brainstorming session to gather the data that would move us forward for the next year.
The facilitators were well trained in design thinking. They were enthusiastic and well-organized. They broke us down into groups of about 20 people. Passed out Post-its and Sharpies.
About then you could feel the sigh roll through the room. I think I heard murmurings of “not another post it note exercise”.
We were given 3-4 minutes to write down as many of our harmful beliefs that we held as departments we could.The Sharpies started moving fast and furious.I started to partake of this common corporate ritual but then I stopped.The deviant in me showed up once again. I wrote down a single note for my harmful belief; “We believe all problems can be solved with a Post-it Note”
At the end of the exercise, we were to hand all of our post it notes to the facilitator to have him read the note out loud.OMG!Then to cluster them into common themes.( This is where the deviant in me totally goes crazy, but more about that later)
I started to sweat a little. Soon it would be my turn to hand in my single note.He looked at me and asked for my note.I cringed, as I passed the note over and he read it out loud,
“We believe all problems can be solved with a Post-it Note”
His face soured and went pale. I think I saw the look of death shoot from his eye. Then something amazing happened. The group applauded! At that moment I knew this concept needed to come to life.