Analyzing Patterns
Forums for analyzing, planning, diagnosing or debriefing

Gaining agreement become more complicated as the number of participants in the discussion grow. Often it is difficult to get two people to agree, let alone a room of nine. When attempting to reach group decisions what tends to happen is that one or few voices become louder than the rest - and many participant refrain from even contributing their opinion. 

The challenge is not only to get people to agree on a result, but also to share their perspective and to get to a true representation of everyone's point of view. True buy-in only happens when each individual feels their voice reflected on the final agreement.

None of the liberating structures can do that on their own, but they can be "stringed" together to allow data to be collected, grouped, prioritized, and agreed on. The items on this concept relate to the identification of patterns among a group of individuals.

Therefore it answers the question: 

"what do our perspectives have in common?".

These structures can be used in brainstormings, retrospectives, planning meetings, and in team building exercises. In order to make sure you get the most out of the activity, make sure to:

  • Clarify the activity structure and objective at the beginning
  • Help participants make progress as the experience unfolds
  • Make time for short debriefs as you progress

Most of the activities require little or no preparation, other than understanding the activity structure. Try them out on your next meeting!