October 5, 2013 in Serious Play Discussion
My understanding of what Heracleous and Jacobs are saying in their book Crafting strategy: Embodied Metaphors in Practice is that the “Embodied Metaphors” need not be constructed out of LEGO at all. The criteria they use more generically relate to three dimensional space and the relationships between the tangible entities in that space. I don’t remember even seeing the word “LEGO” in the copy of their thesis, although I hazard a guess the authors would say LEGO is an ideal candidate.
My point is the methodology we fondly refer to as LEGO SERIOUS PLAY does not necessarily have to be carried out using LEGO pieces. Other objects can be used. The most valuable and universally applicable characteristics of the process are inherent in human nature, not LEGO. We think metaphorically and turning this cognition into 3-dimensional models helps us clarify them to ourselves and share them with others. Storytelling is a proven technique that helps human beings communicate clearly. And so on.
If what I have written above is true it has implications for those of us who live in parts of the world where it is difficult to source LEGO pieces, not only because LEGO doesn’t deliver their product to our countries, and we have to pay additional courier charges to source it, but we face further barriers like exchange rates. I’m proposing it’s OK to supplement the LEGO stock with other physical objects (match box, piece of string, acorn, tin can, things that are readily available but cost little). That will make it easier for those of us living in “far away” places like Africa and Asia to have access to the LEGO SERIOUS PLAY methodology.