Blog post: Lessons from my first LSP session (as non-LSP expert)

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    Thierry Gregorius

    Having just joined this community, just to share my first experience running an LEGO Serious Play session as a non-expert in the method. Everyone loved it and I’m totally inspired by LSP. Now hoping to use it more often in my day job as information management consultant…

    My blog summarises the lessons and results. If you’re experienced with the method you probably won’t find much new in here, but just to let you know I’ve posted this out there hoping to generate a bit more interest in LSP amongst my connections:

    All the best – thierry

    PS. I’m neither a full-time workshop facilitator nor LSP-certified, which I’m hoping to rectify one day!

    Marko Rillo

    Thierry, thanks for sharing your experience. Very good story. It is very nice to know that not having been formally trained in LSP you managed to design and handle your workshop beautifully.

    I added it on the community front blog page here so that it can be shared also via other channels: I also gave you the front page posting rights, which means that from now on you are free to post on the community any of your blog posts by clicking “Add New Post”.

    May I just to ask you about the context in your case given that you asked them to do both Level 1 individual building and Level 2 shared building in one go. Your build question was “How they perceive their team’s strengths versus customer needs.” How aligned were the members of this team with their individual models and stories or was there much diversity of dissenting opinion that they needed to reflect upon when they produced their shared model?

    – Marko

    Thierry Gregorius

    Thanks Marko, appreciate your interest.

    The LSP exercise was aimed at finding what really makes the team unique in terms of value proposition (as perceived by themselves; no users/customers of their services were involved in the exercise).

    This exercise was informed by a range of outputs from other workshop activities that came before it (which were based on gamestorming techniques, not LSP). For example, we had inventorised the team’s skills, which produced a huge and varied list. Also, the team had a history of providing many different services to customers, which we had grouped into different segments to understand their needs better. And, using things like empathy maps and image-ination exercises, we had produced a list of nearly 100 ideas of what other services the team could provide.

    There was a lot of stuff, and doing everything for everyone is obviously not strategy – hence the need to boil it down to the team’s essence and find the unique value proposition.

    In addition to more structured ranking and prioritisation, I was keen to ensure that the team would also think about their purpose and uniqueness more instinctively – this is why I thought it would be great to try LSP. And, as I wrote in the article, it worked amazingly well!

    So to answer your question, the individual models produced some common themes like being agile, mobile and the strength of our personal relationships with customers; these were complemented by more unique interpretations from individual team members of where they thought the team could make a unique contribution (e.g. they have a lot of geological experience in Africa – if you look carefully at one of the pictures you’ll see a model representing the physical shape of Africa, with its multi-colours representing the diversity of its people, business requirements and geology!).

    Creating individual models was fairly straightforward and very intuitive. It was a shame we didn’t have much time to spend on the shared building model, I would have wanted to ask people more questions about some of the connections they made, and whether they could have found more connections between the different elements.

    Also, reflecting on it further, it was interesting to see that LSP produced output comparable to the gamestorming methods which were used in parallel by other groups (they created mood boards, drawings and a ‘Make a World’ landscape out of paper). In fact I would rate the LSP output superior in quality because it felt somehow more personal in terms of expression (although don’t ask me why! It’s just a feeling).

    In hindsight it would have been great to use LSP for all 25 people (not just the sub-team of 5), and then join it all up into one mega-model to explore ideas more deeply. I guess that’s where the LSP facilitator training may be required… But one step at a time, I first wanted to try it on a smaller scale :-)

    Anyway, sorry quite a long answer. Hope this clarifies…! :-)

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