In January, we played Lego during conducting collaborative creativity class.
Playing Lego is totally different from having a meeting. When people have no time to use their rational thoughts, they follow their instincts and hands, and the result is exactly the best way to understand one’s mindset.
Some introvert people are not good at speaking in front of the others, but they could present their thoughts through ‘doing’ very well.
That day, we got 5 tasks:
- Building a tower, as tall as we can (group)
- Building a duck by 7 bricks (individual)
- Taking 3 bricks from your duck, but it still has to be a duck (individual)
- A day when you feel most creative (individual)
- Taking the most important part of previous work and combine with your group members. (group)
- The day you feel most uncreative (individual)
When we built the tower, I was sitting with Start Me Up(my Design Thinking group). We built the tallest tower in the class. When we were asked by Janja, our director, “What is your strategy?” We realised that we just started doing without discussion. I think, this is so-call team chemistry. When a group of people have already worked together for a while, the dynamic would naturally appear.
I still remember, during welcome week, our first week of the course, we were asked to write down what is good / bad / ugly behaviours in team work. I didn’t really experience ‘bad cooperation’ with my team. However, I realised understanding everyone’s characteristics is extremely important, especially when you work with people in creative industries, since people sometimes say, characteristics of artists are the most difficult ones to control.
After few weeks, we had an amazing guest lecture by Alison Coward, who helps people work better and more effective in team work. (Her website: http://bracketcreative.co.uk/) I found it was also relevant to our Lego play class. In her contribution “Great teams: a guide to better creative collaboration” also mentioned, ”Make time for both individual and group working” is so important to your team.
As we played Lego and built the work 4 and work 5, when it comes to a meeting or discussion, the most effective way is bringing everyone’s opinion into it. When the opinions are too different, how to integrate into a consensus would be the key point. Mathematically, 1+1 would be 2. However, realistically, as a team, 1+1 could be more than 2, but also could be even -1. It always depends on can the team find the good balance and lead to consensus.