Research Presented at the Academy of Management (August, 2015)

What’s trust got to do with LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY®?

Well that’s what we were wondering too!  This curiosity lead us to do some research to explore this fascinating topic. From our workshops with various groups we could see when we used LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® (LSP) people became more open and friendly even toward complete strangers.  So after a literature review, we found evidence of how creativity and play can improve trust and lead to trusting behaviors like taking risks, which are needed for innovation.

On August 7, 2015, two members of the Strategic Play® team (Dr. Margaret Rudolf and Jacqueline Lloyd Smith, MA, MBA) presented their research and practice in Vancouver at the Academy of Management. Their presentation focused specifically on the topic of creativity and trust using playful methods.  Approximately 13,000 participants attended the conference. Of these, 45 lucky people (approximately 50% academics and 50% practitioners), attended a breakout to hear, see, and experience the work that the Strategic Play team are doing with LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® materials and methodology, in organizations around the world.

The LEGO® Duck illustrates risk taking behavior and the inner processes and emotions associated with risk taking

The LEGO® Duck illustrates risk taking behavior and the inner processes and emotions associated with risk taking

Trust is the fabric of all relationships. Yet building trusting relationships, or repairing ones where the trust has been destroyed, can be extremely challenging.  Margaret’s  dissertation is on trust and  Jacquie’s master’s thesis (MACAM) is on workplace conflict. So when we add the powerful LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® methodology to the mix, we can see in 3D how something as simple as building with LEGO® bricks can have a profound impact on group dynamics and interpersonal relationships.


To read more on this topic and to find the PDF handout containing all citations, please visit our new training site and see the blog post on trust:


Leave a reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

©2009-2024 links professional facilitators using LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® methodology. It is not affiliated with LEGO. Check LEGO SERIOUS PLAY open source for details or get in touch with us.

See also our Privacy Policy and Frequently Asked Questions about LEGO SERIOUS PLAY

Send a question

We are a group of volunteers and may not respond right away. But soon! :-)


Log in with your credentials


Forgot your details?

Create Account