Image: Unsplash - Glen Carrie

Creative problem solving using the LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY®.

Wednesday 04th October 2023
LSP in action Image 1
Image: LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® 3 Day Workshop - Building in teams

The LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® methodology is a powerful and innovative collaboration tool that has been transforming the way businesses approach problem-solving, team building, and strategic planning. Designed to engage and involve every team member, Lego Serious Play (LSP) leverages the creativity and hands-on nature of LEGO bricks to break down barriers, foster open communication, and unlock the full potential of teams. In this article, we will explore why LSP is such a powerful tool and how it has successfully driven significant improvements in digital thinking and digital maturity for a global FMCG business.

Why it works:

  1. Engaging and Inclusive One of the key strengths of LSP is its ability to engage and involve every participant, regardless of their role, expertise, or background. By using LEGO bricks as a tactile and visual medium, LSP encourages active participation and fosters an inclusive environment where everyone’s voice is heard and valued. This level of engagement leads to richer discussions, more creative solutions, and a stronger sense of ownership and commitment among team members.

  2. Unlocks Creativity and Innovation LSP stimulates creativity and innovation by encouraging participants to think outside the box and explore new ideas and perspectives. By building and manipulating LEGO models, team members can express their thoughts and insights in a tangible and visual way, enabling them to more effectively communicate and collaborate on complex challenges.

  3. Encourages Open Communication and Collaboration LSP fosters open communication and collaboration by breaking down hierarchical barriers and creating a safe space for honest and candid conversations. As participants share their LEGO models and the stories behind them, they develop a deeper understanding of one another’s perspectives and ideas, leading to more effective problem-solving and decision-making.

LSP in action
Image: LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® 3 Day Workshop - Discussing the model

How it works:

Lego Serious Play (LSP) is a facilitated, hands-on methodology that utilises LEGO bricks as a medium to encourage creative problem-solving, communication, and collaboration among team members. Developed by LEGO Group, LSP is based on the idea that hands-on, minds-on learning enhances understanding and retention, and that play can provide powerful insights and solutions. Here is a breakdown of how LSP works and what participants do during an LSP session:

  1. Preparation and Setting the Stage: Before starting an LSP session, the facilitator sets a clear objective and context for the workshop. The environment should be arranged to foster creativity, collaboration, and open communication, with participants seated around a table, and a variety of LEGO bricks available for building.

  2. The Four Core Steps of LSP: The LSP process typically follows four core steps: posing the question, building, sharing, and reflecting. The facilitator guides participants through these steps, ensuring everyone remains engaged and involved.

Posing the Question: The facilitator poses a question or challenge related to the workshop’s objective. This question should be open-ended, allowing for a wide range of possible answers and stimulating creative thinking.

Building: Participants individually construct LEGO models in response to the posed question. The building process encourages participants to think creatively and translate their thoughts, ideas, and insights into tangible, three-dimensional LEGO models.

Sharing: After completing their models, participants take turns presenting their creations to the group. They share the story behind their model, explaining the meaning and significance of each element. This process encourages open communication and helps to develop a shared understanding among team members.

Reflecting: Once all participants have shared their models, the group reflects on the insights and ideas that emerged during the sharing process. The facilitator may guide the group in a discussion, exploring common themes, identifying potential solutions, and determining the next steps.

Iterative Process: LSP sessions can involve multiple rounds of building and sharing, with each round building upon the insights and ideas generated in the previous one. This iterative process allows for the exploration of complex issues and the development of a deeper understanding of the subject matter.

Group Model Building: In some LSP workshops, participants may work together to create a shared model that represents a collective understanding or vision. This collaborative building process encourages teamwork, negotiation, and alignment among team members.

LSP in action Image 2
Image: LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® 3 Day Workshop - Presenting the models

LSP in Action 

Working closely with a global FMCG brand, we embarked on a journey across multiple markets, the focus, to build on their collaboration and creative problem-solving abilities. Each market presented its unique set of challenges and insights. The subsequent case study explores our experiences and endeavours with the Canadian team, shedding light on the methods employed and the notable outcomes achieved. The Fiora Team ran a 3-day intensive workshop. The core objective was to amplify the markets grasp of digital thinking and apply it to creative problem solving and cross functional collaboration. As a secondary objective, the stakeholders we keen for the team to develop their understanding of digital maturity, how it can be used to create and capture value and scale it for sustainable growth. 

The outcomes were genuinely amazing. By the workshop's conclusion, the market had shown over 60% enhancement in their understanding of digital thinking, its application in problem solving and collaboration. Furthermore, there was a staggering 80% increase in their regard for the principles of digital maturity. 

LSP, as a methodology, was instrumental in creating a change that was conducive to candid communication, boundless creativity, and collaboration. The tactile and engaging essence of LSP provided a medium for the team to delve deep into intricate concepts, forge a unified comprehension of both digital thinking and maturity, and bring to light fresh perspectives and avenues for progress.

LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® has unequivocally established itself as a transformational collaborative instrument for contemporary businesses. It has demonstrated its efficacy in bolstering digital acumen, digital maturity, and the holistic performance of teams. Its beauty lies in its capacity to engage every attendee actively, unleash latent creativity, innovate, and establish a culture of open dialogue. With the rapidly evolving and intricate challenges confronting businesses in today's world, LSP and Fiora's application of digital thinking stands out as a potent and pragmatic solution.