The 4 Power Positions and how to use them in meetings

Where you choose to sit shows your status. What are you unwittingly revealing about yourself as you sit in meetings?

Most people unknowingly adopt a role at the meeting table.   However, there are some players who’ll consciously decide what impact they want and choose where to sit accordingly.

If you want to have more choice on how you play on this type of stage, let’s decode the 4 Power Positions that impact on involvement.

Power Position 1

The First Power Position is occupied by the person who’s (supposed to be be) steering the meeting.  It provides a clear view of everyone including whoever is entering the room.  Think back to 100,000 years ago when you lived in a cave.  You’d never have your back to the opening, in case a cave bear wanted to nudge you out the way.  So seats facing the door (think modern offices) are always a prime position.

Power can be quiet so it doesn’t mean you’re the most vocal.  In this position you may be :

  1. raising issues;
  2. bringing speakers in;
  3. setting procedures;
  4. summing up.


Power Position 2

This is Power Position 2 – usually reserved for second-in-command.

Because the position is directly opposite the Chairperson, this seating could be used to launch combat, especially in tricky negotiations or internal meetings where there’s a power struggle.

If the Chairperson wishes to avoid such situation in the case they may be likely, the following pictures will give you ideas for alternatives.





The Middle Positions

This seat is ideal for chairing when there are no seats at the head of the meeting.


It’s also a handy position for rounding up, mediating and summarising.  This is because you can see everyone’s bright shiny faces.  And when they look glum, bored or combative, you can use your radar vision and central placing to politely ask:  “Do we have enough time for the other 15 items that are on the agenda in our 30 minute meeting.”  (The answer will hopefully be ‘afraid not’).


This seat is useful taking a low profile.  Don’t want to voice your opinion?  Sit here.  Don’t want to be the centre of attention?  Choose this seat. Want to size up the situation and observe others?  Park your bum in this place.



Flanking Positions

On the Chairperson’s right, indicated by the green disc, is the person to whom they look for guidance

On their left, indicated by the yellow disc, sits ‘the leader’s assistant’.  This is a good position from which to:

  • gently remind where you’re up to in the meeting
  • speed up the meeting or slow it down.


…and there are 2 techniques for this role, one that will make you cherished at every meeting because it keeps everyone to the point and stops time wasting.  But more on that in later posts.

Have a go

One of my workshop participants in Managing Up, Down and Sideways, told me they’d had a client meeting with this arrangement: seats 2 and 3 were taken up by her and her colleague, both partners in a Law firm, with seat number 8 offered to a client who was already disgruntled before the meeting and completely dissatisfied by the end.

You’ll see the partners have put themselves towards the door and the client has his back to it.  They’re also on the same side, which makes a metaphorical statement.

Where would you put the client, yourself and the partner, if the client was visiting your office?  Bear in mind that there may be more than one answer.











You’ll find that Power Positions can also apply in social gatherings?  Notice someone dominating?  Observe where they’re sitting.  See the one trying to keep a low profile?  Look at their position.

If you hate presentations, you’ll love this…

The hog and the boy

Have you been handed an awkward burden?

You’ve been handed a burden, which seems to have already decided where it wants to go: yes, someone’s dumped a presentation on you, and if you’re really unlucky, they’re filled with the words and slides of another.

Your stomach feels like a cement mixer as you’re launched into the pit of anxiety that threatens to swallow you up.

Actually, a certain amount of nervous energy can sharpen the senses but you want to control them, not have them control you.

So here are 7 ways to make nervous energy work for you and make presenting – dare I say it – enjoyable.

Numbers 2 and 7 can be particularly useful in life, not just presentations: not that presentations are part of something other than life.  You’re not sailing on the Styx: just speaking to a bunch of people, for heaven’s sake.  You can do it.

Read on if you want to save your heart rate for the gym.

Someone else contolling your presentation?

Someone else contolling your presentation?

  1. Don’t be someone else’s glove puppet – got someone else’s 76 tedious slides to deliver? Define the key message, make sure you make maximum 9 points to support it, then chuck, change or skip the slides you don’t need. Your job is to communicate a message, not be a mouthpiece for someone for a bad messenger.
  2. Reframe – when asked to do a presentation, many consider this a huge bane. After all, it’s not the core part of their role, unless they’re a professional presenter. So tell yourself: ‘I do not do presentations. I do dialogues, with one person speaking most of the time.’ We all know how normal that kind of conversation is.
  3. Breathe – when you’re nervous, your breathing may tend to go up to your chest, this ‘upper thoracic’ pattern generates more adrenalin, which can make you short of breath and increase anxiety further. By breathing from the stomach, or ribs around the centre of the torso, you’ll achieve greater calm.
  4. Dump the script – trying to remember a script can not only makes your presentation a stressful experience but can also make you look and sound rather wooden. You need some spontaneity in there so using a mind map, showing your points and how they relate to your main message, would give you a clear pathway through your content
  5. Not a herd of heads, but humans – chatting with members of your audience beforehand means that you’ll already have a connection amongst those faces. As a result, that anonymous sea of faces disappears and is replaced by what it really is: a group of individuals who really want to listen to you. And I know this for a fact because it’s pretty questionable that anyone would want a speaker to be unengaging, unless they need to catch up on their sleep.
  6. Don’t introduce yourself – you may not have to do this anyway, if someone is introducing you, but in the spirit of a normal conversation, it’s uncommon for a stranger to approach you with ‘Hi, my name is Jo Bloggs and I’m the R&D Director for Sky-high Ltd.’ You’d forget the name anyway because there’s too much processing going on in our minds when we first meet people. Have you ever gone out and started talking to someone, then half an hour later it dawns on one of you to ask the other’s name? What you did was engage, just like in a natural conversation. To do this in a presentation, you can use the Spice Rack, techniques of engagement. These include a picture, prop, anecdote or quote. Then, and only then, introducing yourself would be timely.
  7. Transfer an experience – when speaking in public, you may need to tap into a sense of confidence. Sometimes, it might be something like a feeling of freedom or control. Once that the emotional quality has been pinpointed, recall a time when you felt this. By summoning up the atmosphere and senses around this experience, you can then use a physical trigger to immediately invoke that sensation.





Are you guilty of these 3 common team pitch mistakes?

A pitching team you'd buy from?

A pitching team you’d buy from?

Some team pitches look like they’re been fronted by The Three Stooges.  Each one does a fine job of messing up for the others.

If you have to pitch with at least one other person,  it’s vital you look like a team and not a bunch of individuals from different departments,  blindly patching it all together.

Actually, that isn’t fair.  Sometimes teams get to patch it together on the 30 minute taxi ride to the client.

So here we go with top 3 oversights in a team pitch:


1. Guessing games for the customer

One person often ‘does an intro’,  then you get other members of a pitching team standing there like skittles.

During a monologue about how John Mcdougall was inspired to start up Dynamic Dynamos from staring at a bevelled paperweight in 1952,  the client is pondering who that bloke is with the red brogues.  While the audience is wondering who does what too much of their attention is left behind.

The team needs tie that curiosity up at the top,  by saying right upfront:

i)  who does what;
ii) how they help with the end product / service


2. Not referring back to others

Brynne from Business Development talks about her department.  Jake then  discusses IT.   Neither of them reference how they interact with each other.  So is there a commercial view of the technology?   Who knows.   Let us try and play ‘fill the gap’  with the content.  No,  let us not,  because it’s too much effort.

To look as if you’re cohesive,  picking up on what someone else in your team has said gives the impression to the potential client that not one but several of you have got their back. You’re a project that a collective has deemed worthy of their attention.

It takes just a few touches to give the client that warm glow of a customised solution but this is one often overlooked.


3. Not knowing what the members of your team are going to say

Naturally,  this ends badly.   No one needs curve balls from their own team mates.   Here are the 3 manifestations of these nasties:

i) Omission
you thought someone else was covering that point. Since that point may deal with the customer’s doubts about scalability,  that’s going to be lingering in the air and it needs to be dealt with sooner or later.

ii) Duplication
Probably the least awful as repetition can be used to emphasise a point.

iii) Contradiction
The worst.   Contradicting team mates in front of potential customers is a form of psychological pugilism.   This is not good for harmonious relationships back in the office although it is excellent for perpetuating distrust from the client and between the team.   If that’s what you want,  way to go.

If you care not for this kind of disharmony,  a mind map or list of content for everyone to cover, could save some shame.

Not only can you validate each others’ content but you’ll also be able to cross sell services and increase the likelihood of a buy.


So what specific problems can you add to team pitches?
Sharing is caring so please let us know.
Of course,  sharing may just be offloading and that can feel good too.  So go ahead and vent / share…

The 7 faces of managers

There's more than one version of you

There’s more than one version of you

The ability to wear different hats is essential for anyone managing others. You don’t have to have an acting background but you will need to know how to play 7 different roles, which are as follows:

1.  Leader

In industrial sectors and economies a foreman would be making sure everyone adheres to a system, and organise processes and people. In the knowledge economy management and leadership are not easily separated. People look to their managers, not just to assign them a task, but to define a purpose: managers must organize workers, not just to maximise efficiency, but to nurture skills, develop talent and inspire results.


2. Catalyst

A manager has to make things happen but through other people. They need to motivate in order to be able to delegate. Sometimes, thus feels like pinning down a fish because what propels individuals to action isn’t set in stone. Honing in on what makes individuals tick is a necessary skill that you can develop.


3. Coach

Your team members may need your guidance. Sometimes it’s quicker to do it yourself (got children? Then you’ll know what I mean). The problem with that is they’ll be hanging off your Herman Miller chair and no amount of rotating will shake them off since you’ve just developed co-dependants. Put a bit of coaching in upfront and you’ll free up your time later.


4. Observer

To make progress, you need to note what’s going on and how people operate in that paradigm. Then decide how to interact in that world. Whether you need to change your leadership style or the way you influence depends on the status quo you observe. Change is a constant so by keeping your eyes and ears open, you’ll find a way to optimise your teams.


5. Peer

You could look on and tell your team what to do or roll up your sleeves and collaborate. Looking on develops a ‘them and us’ situation. There are times when professional distance will not win respect but resentment. Collaboration engenders greater respect and shows that you can walk the walk as well as talk the talk.


6. Supporter

A supporter provides support. If you already guessed that, well done to you.

Delegation isn’t always just a matter of sending people off to work on a project or task. You may be the one with budget and resources they need. Support can come in the way of feedback, structure, equipment, being a sounding board, providing space and time to your people. Either way, delegation is not a matter of ditching responsibility. Even if you do let go of the reins, you need to know where they are.


7. Challenger

To get the best out of people, a certain level of challenge could keep them on their toes.

Without challenge, individuals can coast, sacrificing the resourcefulness that’s necessary in shifting sands. It also reflects a level of faith in people when you encourage them to reach beyond themselves. Do make sure that this aspiration for them, though, matches the one they have for themselves otherwise you’ll need to sell it more.


Have you got anything to add to these roles? Is there one I’ve omitted?

Feel free to let me know in the comments…

How to avoid a damp squib ending to your presentation

Sudden endings can ruin a presentation

Sudden endings can ruin a presentation

The end of a presentation can feel very much like falling off a cliff: you’ve got some solid content that you tread through,  then suddenly there’s nothing.   Often you’ll find yourself calling into the gap beyond with ‘Any questions?’

Although dealing with questions is a separate post,  one way to avoid this call into the abyss is to ask a question that reinforces your key point, such as:

“I’m often asked whether we need to change strategy at all if what we have is getting us by.   And that’s the point… We can more than ‘get by’:  diversifying  offers an exciting opportunity to grow,  learn and secure a more profitable future.  Who wouldn’t want that?”

The 3 point closure provides a neat conclusion, using a rhetorical question as the full stop.   Do ensure that the key message re-emphasises what’s in it for your audience.

Avoid self-aggrandising ‘questions’, as in the following example:

‘People ask me why I’m so brilliant.   It’s partly nature and a bit of nurture.   Thanks and goodbye’.

Looks like there’s a humility drought here in a desert of ego.   Where’s the reinforcement of audience benefit?

This is not dissimilar from a real example I recall from a motivational speaker:

“People ask me how they can be more like me…” I can’t remember the rest.  I think I was out the room by then.


A word about the 3 point closure:

The three point closure allows for a distinctive end to your presentation.   This avoids having it hanging incomplete in the ether, leaving your audience confused as to whether you’ve finished or not.

For example in Winston Churchill’s famous blood,  sweat and tears speech, what he actually said was “I can promise you Blood, Sweat, Toil and Tears”.   We lost the toil and actually only recall ‘blood,  sweat and tears’  for the same reason that we remember ‘A Mars a day helps you work,  rest and play’. (or ‘your teeth rot away’ although that calls upon rhythm and rhyme more as a mnemonic).


To sum up:

  1. Ask a question that reinforces the key benefit to the audience
  2. Use a rule of 3 within the answer
  3. You can also add devices like rhetorical questions or quotes to provide a clear ending.

So these 3 devices will give your words more weight….and who wouldn’t want that?!


Tell us about the time when…

Increase your impact with the S.T.A.R. structure

Job interviews are all about being able to tell a riveting story.   What’s on your CV isn’t enough in itself,  besides you have relevant experience that’s you probably haven’t even put on there.

Thank goodness you’re more than typed words on 2 sides of A4.

Now it’s time to get that across with enough impact to stand out from the competition.

Giving clear, succinct answers to challenge and achievement questions

Mixing up the personal with the professional in your interview responses  helps you be remembered more easily.   If you have a tale of transformation as a CIO,  that would tick a box but not necessarily make you stand out from the crowd.

It’s personal examples that help the interviewer realise other aspects of your character and ability,  giving you more chance to express your uniqueness.

As long as these anecdotes meet a competency,  drop them in.

To increase your impact,  use the STAR structure below to ensure that you really grab the chance to show an interviewer who you are.



Describe the background,  giving the reason for the example.

“I’d decided to raise money for charity when my grandfather lost his sight. I’m a climber so scaling up Snowdon to raise cash for the Royal National Institute of the Blind was appealing.”


The objective – what you had to do in the context, if applicable, of your team.Star

“My objective was to raise £1,000 through Kickstarter and social media campaigns.   My climbing partner, Danny and I would be doing this in winter – during the night – and abseil down at dawn.”



What I did – if there are challenges and obstacles this is an opportune time to mention them. At this point, use more ‘I’, then ‘we’.  I’m not hiring your team, just you.  If you give other too much credit, it’s their number I want, not yours:

Our campaign had also been some months in preparation as my climbing partner,  Danny,  and I hit social media and I initiated a Kickstarter campaign.

“I train regularly in the outdoors anyway so physically Danny and I were fine.  We got to Snowdon and started climbing in the freezing dark.   A sudden downfall made our tread slightly more risky but there’s nothing like bad weather to focus you.  When we eventually abseiled down the mountain,  we were exhausted and elated.



The Outcome – what did you learn or/and achieve from this experience? Are there statistics or valuable lessons that you gained? How about any insights?

“The result was that I’d aimed to raise £1,000 for the Royal Institute of the Blind, but raised £12,000 in the end. That’s 12 times more than I could have imagined.  What helped me was the fact that I had planned extremely thoroughly, wasn’t afraid to use the resources I already had and that a challenge doesn’t put off: in fact it motivates me.”


Examples of other tales, ripe for the STAR structure:

Here are some other personal examples I’ve heard in job interviews:

  1. Canoed up the Panama trekked through the rain forest and sped down to Chile: on a tractor (used for a banking candidate – shows resourcefulness,  risk-taker)
  2. Organised 2 weddings both for my sister: Catholic and Hindu including have to gain permission for a ceremonial  fire in the Café Royal London (for an engineering interviewee, demonstrates project planning,  initiative)
  3. Worked as a journalist for a university publication,  interviewing MPs,  bands,  general public  (for an IT consultant, proving confidence in communication skills).

If you want help telling your story get in touch with me directly right here.

Do you make these 9 common management mistakes?


BlindleadingblindsmallTake any project you’ve worked on and think back.  How could it have been better?

There’s so much you can learn from a job done badly that I’ve compiled a list, which is by no means exhaustive.  There are many ways a project can be dragged out,  botched up,  and overshoot the budget.

My engineering clients chipped in with this compilation and you can apply the following situations across all technical realms.

Let me know below:  what have I missed?

  1. Too many clashing agendas from all the business partners
    The problem is many leaders don’t use their communication skills to sort out conflicting aims before they become a problem.  Negotiating and setting expectations are key.
  2. Too many people at meetings that don’t stick to the point
    It’s pretty unlikely that a 2 hour meeting really does involve 15 people.  Pick out what’s relevant for whom and only have them present.  ‘Meetings’ can be just as effective one a one-to-one basis, while the kettle’s on.
  3. Too many meetings or lack of agenda and actionable outcomes
    Sometimes the outcome of the meetings is….another meeting.  Who’s doing what by when?  Do they have the capability and know-how?  Have you checked they have the resources?  Individuals need varying levels of delegation and nothing’s going to get done if they need more from you and it’s not given or benchmarked.
  4. Mismatching the skill set with the role, e.g., process engineer delivering electrical deliverables.  It’s like hiring a nuclear physicist as a lawyer.  (Of course, they could probably blow up the opposition for you but I’m not sure it’s legal where you are).
  5. Lack of or incomplete scope of work
    I bet you know this one:  Client:  ‘Here’s the job.’  1 month later:  Client ‘I forgot to add this.’  2 weeks later…’There’s this as well.’  Then they get rankled when you mention pricing and delay of completion.  Part of the issue is the way information is extracted from the client / partner.  It comes down to asking the right questions.  Another point is that managers may take little time out to think how lessons learned in the past can be integrated into the current project.
  6. Roles and responsibilities ill -defined
    Team friction is often due do the scope of the project changing (see no.5 above). Roles and responsibilities shift, causing ambivalence and conflict.
  7. Absence of risk mitigation or contingency planning
    Not reflecting on lessons learned from previous projects dulls the foresight you need to spot and mitigate risks.
  8. Exchanging personnel on a regular basis
    Not everyone does hand overs well, and some staff don’t do hand overs at all so subsequent team members have no idea what’s what.  All you can rely on is management being in the know.  They’ll possibly be out of the loop on small details that can make a big difference unless they’re in close proximity to their teams.  If you know you’re going to have to change people round, ensure the right people are involved when the baton’s passed.
  9. Lack of control of work done resulting considerable amounts of rework
    If the hand is off the steering wheel, the car will end up in a ditch (if you’re lucky).  Likewise, letting projects run without a detailed schedule, risk management and a more collaborative approach, results in having to backing up and follow a new road from the beginning. This adds to cost and time.


Management is sometimes leading, other times collaborating, and balancing that with knowing when to step back. .

What’s missing?  Add your own experiences below!  Looking forward to seeing them…


3 reasons you blank and what to do about it



If blanking had a picture…

Blanking during a presentation is the mental equivalent of your clothes falling off in front of the audience.  It’s the moment you stop speaking, as does your ability to think.  I don’t mean, ‘think clearly’, but actually the ability to think at all.


This is sometimes accompanied by the disturbing sensation of floating out of your skin to watch your ‘other self’ helplessly freeze in front of the audience.




The reasons we blank

Here are the three most common reasons for this brain-jam:

  1. Awareness of being looked at:
    sudden awareness that we’re being watched by countless pairs of eyes,  judging performance and personality.
  2. Trying to remember a script:
    the total stress of trying to remember lines, when bullet points acting as ‘landmarks in the road’ would have done fine.  Unless you’re a politician or giving police reporting on the progress on a crime, ditch the script.  It’s a security blanket.
  3. Unnatural introductions:
    beginning a presentation with your name often feels like the equivalent of opening your coat to reveal a target: ‘you know who I am now, so you know who to hit’.

According to reviews in Scientific American, research has recently discovered that stress impacts on the pre-frontal cortex.  The pre-frontal cortex aids short-term memory, concentration on the task in hand and choosing appropriate actions.  It’s the command centre of the brain.

Under stress, the captain of the command centre can misread a situation as one of danger, triggering the hypothalamus, the primitive part of the brain.  The hypothalamus will, in response, release adrenalin causing a ‘fight or flight’ response.

This isn’t very useful if your audience want to understand how the new IT change programme is going to support the company strategy.


How to deal with ‘blanking’


I’ve read ‘Tell yourself you’re fab/the audience loves you/your presentation is amazing”, and other such nonsense.  Well, I’ve had stage fright and I can tell you this: you can’t tell yourself anything because that part of the brain is out for lunch, given up, shut down.  Dog gawn.


  1.  Gesture:
    Gesture to draw out words from your head – something will occur to you until you find the next point.
  2. Move your feet:
    Move from one position to another. If you move you’ll breathe, and this will clear the thought process, buy you time and make you look more confident.  As this action usually builds in a natural pause, it will add presence and control, even as your mind is flipping like a Roladex.
  3. Mentally shift:
    Do what you do when you lose your house keys: retrace your steps.  Recap what you said when the pre-frontal cortex was in control and it will lead you to pinpoint what to say next.  You can do this aloud: the audience will often help you! As it happens to everyone, it actually helps you to become more engaging.  (Please note, however, I’m not encouraging you to make a habit of this.  There are other ways to be engaging!).


Now, when you look at the reasons for blanking, such as scripting, there are many ways to avoid it in the first place.

Using theatre improvisation techniques is essential for confident presenting: very little will phase you as the command centre of the pre-frontal brain will always be in control, increasingly unphased by the unexpected.  It won’t go AWOL: you can avoid brain-jams and out of body experiences.

The habit of risk taking in this way, breeds a sense of calm and trust that won’t be read as a disaster situation but as an opportunity to make your point and let your personality shine through freely.



3 ways to tap your creativity at work

six senses dan pink

From ‘A Whole New Mind’ by Daniel Pink

Why Creativity is Important

For CEOs, creativity is now the most important leadership quality for success in business, outweighing even integrity and global thinking, according to a study by IBM. The study is the largest known sample of one-on-one CEO interviews, with over 1,500 corporate heads and public sector leaders across 60 nations and 33 industries polled on what drives them in managing their companies in today’s world.

One of the challenges that specialists in IT, Finance and Engineering encounter is that they feel the pressure of conforming to a process oriented culture.  Mind-numbingly boring meetings and tick boxing seems to work against being resourceful.

This suppresses the creative thinking that is needed to:

  • generate ideas, whether this is introducing a new product or the applications of coding
  • increase team collaboration in problem solving such as those needed for engineering teams needing to work out operational issues


The Price of Pressure

In the U.S. and UK, 80% of people felt increasing pressure to be productive rather than creative, while the number rose as high as 85% in France.

Yet, with the ground constantly shifting and competitors looming creative thinking is vital.

If you want to breathe life into idea generation and problem solving, use techniques that very few of your competitors are using: theatre based play and visual games.


You don't have to cross-dress to be creative.

You don’t have to cross-dress to be creative.

The Androgyny of the Mind

“A great mind must be androgynous.”  Samuel Taylor Coleridge

You may be relieved (or frustrated) to know that it’s not necessary to do a David Bowie at work.   Regardless, the androgyny that Coleridge was talking about is the ability to access both the analytical and creative, in order to generate solutions and ideas.

If you feel more comfortable with the word ‘resourceful’, then it’s that quality you can be tapping into.   Here  are three suggestions that have been really successful in increasing resourcefulness, with a wide range of teams in IT, Engineering and Finance.

These ideas can be used at the beginning of sessions to shift the thinking from analytical to creative/resourceful and get everyone thinking ‘out the box’



       1. Word Association:

The mind starts to make weird and humorous connections with this game: just what you need to start thinking more expansively.  Simply begin a story with one word and the next person adds another word, triggered but not necessarily connected to the previous word.  Expand it to 2 words per person, then to three.  You can eventually build this up to phrases that make a story.

Unexpected neurological links are formed during this type of ‘play’.  This will impact on problem solving in that you’ll truly start to think more resourcefully as new neurological pathways are formed.

2. Ordinary Objects, Abnormal Use:

Have a pool of objects at hand.   Using a hoop:  one participant jumps into the circle, picks up a hoop: the hoop can be a window; the next person jumps in and the hoop becomes a hole in the road.  Then someone else makes it a giant bangle.

The point is no-one is rejecting ideas, as everyone’s offer is built on what’s gone before.  A common problem with brainstorming is that ‘bad’ ideas are too often rejected.  You need ‘bad’ ideas to get to the top of the pyramid, where the ‘good’ one is.

Had Dr Spencer Silver actually come up with a super strong adhesive, the Post-It Note – made from his ‘failed’ weak version – would never have been invented.

Sometimes, we go ‘wrong’.  And this is absolutely right.

3. Brainwriting:

Write an idea on a piece of paper.  Fold the paper into an aeroplane and throw it across the circle to someone else.  The recipient then adds to that suggestion by writing it in the plane, folding it back and throwing it to someone else.

This stops conversation from being sidetracked and encourages everyone’s equal contribution of ideas, whether introverted or extroverted.


The problem with ‘brainstorming sessions’ is they often muddy two types of thinking: divergent and convergent.  Divergent thinking generates ideas.  Convergent thinking sorts and analyses these ideas towards the best outcome but ideas are often judged and thrown out before the best solution is found.

Improvisation and play can create excellent ground for divergent thinking before input is screened, tweaked and filtered.


I would love to hear how you encourage Divergent thinking in your own departments and to what effect.  What did you find useful?  What changes did you see?  Did your team start to work differently as a result?  Let me know below!


How to stop shaking when you present

Get shaky arms and legs when presenting? Here’s how to stop the quivering and feel freer.