Many of us make the mistaken assumption that others see what we see and know what we know. No one in the world shares your internal system map of reality. The best way to compare notes, so to speak, is to actually draw an external representation of what you think is happening. This activity gives you the opportunity to better understand other participants roles and responsibilities. It helps chip away at the silos and introduces the novel idea that we may be seeing only one reality: ours. It helps immensely to show what we see to others so that we can start to share a reality and work on it together.
- Give all participants access to flip chart paper, markers and sticky notes.
- Ask them to take 30 seconds to write one of their job responsibilities on a sticky note and stick it to their shirt.
- Have the participants wander around the room and pair up with someone whose job responsibility they’re the least familiar with or that they’re curious about.
- In pairs ask the participants to take turns drawing their best representations of how they envision the other person’s workflow around that job duty. They can use simple circles, boxes, and arrows to make flowcharts or they can get creative, but they cannot interview the other play or ask clarifying questions while they’re drawing. Give them 10 minutes to draw quietly.
- When the time is up, give each play five minutes to share her drawing with the other person and describe what it means.
- Then give the pairs 10 minutes each to clarify and agree on the realities of each others drawing. They should also take time to discuss where the areas of ease, friction, and interactions with others fall in the process. They can elaborate and draw on the other person’s visual at this point, or the original creator of the visual can add content to his partner slides.
As a debrief ask for volunteers to show their visuals to the larger group and to describe some of their insights and observations