One of the big challenges with rolling out anything that changes the way people work is getting people to accept it and make the transition. This post isn’t looking at the wider subject of user adoption strategies but covers a great visual technique that I used recently to help build trust within a team, it’s also a technique that I will use more to help users to deal with the fears of change and the hopes that the change will bring.
The serious game is from the great Visual Teams book by David Sibbet and called Hopes and Fears
Hopes and Fears
It can be difficult to get people to open up to a group and express fears about the pending introduction of SharePoint. You may be really concerned about this new wizzy collaboration platform being rolled out when you only just got the hang of the shared folders. In the hopes and fears game you do the following.
1) Use a large board or better still a roll of A0 paper stuck to the wall. On the paper write in big letters Hopes & Fears leaving most of the page blank.
2) Get the team to break up into groups of 2. In a fixed time (20 minutes works well) get each pair to interview each other and record their Hopes and Fears.
3) Bringing the team back together get each person to present their pairs hopes and fears adding them to the wall (If you have a good graphic facilitator they can write them out, if not use post it notes and stick them to the wall.
The benefit of this approach is that it is not the person who is presenting their fears but someone else which has the effect of removing the personal element and making more of a team hope or fear.
As you add the hopes and fears to the wall try to group them, you will find that you end up with some common themes, which show the areas you should look to address but also some of the hopes the team has that can feed into any vision games.
This game does not aim to address the fears, but it does make them visible and helps the team to open up and start to trust each other more, it will also help the people doing the roll out to understand the areas they need to focus on to ensure a successful adoption.