Human Centred Stakeholder Workshops Excel Online with The Right Collaboration Tool – Derby Museums

Derby Silk Mill is widely regarded as the site of the world’s first modern factory.

Hannah Fox is the Director of Projects and Programmes for Derby Museums, an organization that manages 3 public museums of art, history and natural history located in Derby, United Kingdom: The Derby Museum and Art Gallery, Pickford’s House, and their latest project, the Museum of Making located at Derby Silk Mill, an £18 Million development due to open in Spring 2021!

As an organization, Derby Museums uses human-centred design (design thinking) and co-production approaches to develop their projects, programmes and activities with their communities.

To learn more about this approach you can read DERBY MUSEUMS Human-Centred Design Handbook.

They also deliver online training for other cultural organizations that are interested in using human centred design and co-production approaches.

Facilitating Collaboration Online

Collaboration is at the heart of Derby Museums’ projects. They work together internally as well as with external parties and use design-thinking tools to capture and prioritise the desires and needs of their communities and stakeholders.

 
Before the pandemic, most of Derby Museums’ development sessions and workshops took place face to face and were facilitated through flip charts and post-it-notes… lots of post-it-notes!

As many companies have in recent times, Hannah needed to take Derby Museums’ activities into the digital space and required a platform where they could facilitate their sessions online. The need to transition to a new modality for what had been outcomes driven by human contact meant that processes had to be re-engineered and meeting tools used to ensure that the values, outcomes and methodologies of Derby could be maintained, if not enhanced.

Finding the Right Collaboration Tool for Remote Teams

It was important for Hannah to find a platform that could offer a choice of tools for collaborative human-centred design brainstorming and thinking. She also needed the collaboration tool to be intuitive, flexible and able to provide a great experience for both the facilitator and participants, with the massive price tags and steep learning curve.

Before finding GroupMap she had tried other collaboration tools, but found they were either too restrictive, with limited ways to engage, or too open, which led to participants interrupting each other’s contributions and as a result the experience became messy and the session less effective.

I’ve been looking for a great digital platform that allows us to do similar things online as we do in person – brainstorming, empathy mapping, journey mapping etc. and have tried several – Miro, Mural, Google Jamboard etc. and I think GroupMap is by far the best user experience‘. – Hannah Fox

Workshop Facilitation Tools and Techniques

Derby Museums have been using GroupMap to support them in their Museum of Making project. 

They have conducted a wide range of collaborative development sessions with staff, volunteers, and stakeholders in groups of between 10 to 50 people. These sessions were conducted through a range of virtual meetings and workshops and a range of activities and techniques were supported.

These included:

  • General Brainstorming
  • Empathy Mapping
  • Value Proposition
  • Stakeholder Mapping
  • Programme Design
  • Project Development
  • Teaching
Empathy Map with GroupMap

Hannah's GroupMap Experience

GroupMap provided an invaluable collaborative tool that allowed facilitators to plan and deliver sessions effectively, enabling the journey mapping of sessions ahead of time and creating ways to run a workshop and gather insights that seamlessly enabled collaborative thinking. The participant experience was enjoyable, interesting and fun!‘ – Hannah Fox

Hannah was impressed by the abundance of templates GroupMap provides to help get you started, noting that they were very relevant and hugely useful. 

Hannah also reflected that the ability for the group to brainstorm and generate lots of ideas quickly in GroupMap had been particularly useful. 

As a facilitator, being able to see who is contributing enabled her to offer prompts to support the quieter contributors to increase overall engagement and participation.

She received great feedback from the participants of her development sessions with the most common compliments being how intuitive and easy it was to use the platform.

Really enjoyed the session you ran using GroupMap – it was a fantastic way to collaborate!’ – Meeting participant

Value Proposition with GroupMap

GroupMap: Supporting Organizational Outcomes

For Derby Museums, GroupMap has been a huge success, helping them achieve their organizational outcomes of:

  • Collaborative planning
  • Human-centred design and co-production activities
  • Sector teaching opportunities

At last, a platform that supports the way we think and gives us a fantastic digital space to develop ideas and collaborate with others! It helped us take our normal project planning and in person activities online during the pandemic, but will continue to be a hugely useful addition to our resources once a little bit of normality returns.’- Hannah Fox

Derby Museums will be continuing to use GroupMap for planning and developing their internal projects, as well as externally to engage with partners and communities in developing ideas, gathering data and for delivering workshops and activities. These partners include corporations like Rolls-Royce, as well as museum organisations internationally.

Want to try GroupMap as an online brainstorm tool? 

Schedule a demo with a GroupMap team member at a day and time that suits you best or have a go of our easy to use, supported online brainstorm tool for FREE for 14 days today. 

Case Study: Tuna Blue Uses Innovative Facilitation Tools to Engage Stakeholders

Tuna Blue Facilitation supports groups to make their best decisions together by providing tailored facilitation processes paired with innovative digital technology.

Group Map Case Study – Tuna Blue Facilitation

Who is Tuna Blue?

Tuna Blue Facilitation supports groups to make their best decisions together by providing tailored facilitation processes paired with innovative digital technology. It’s an approach they call Long Haul Facilitation and it’s been refined in 1,300+ workshops with Government, community, and corporate groups in a diverse range of sectors. Always ready for the long haul, Will and Bevan at Tuna Blue have worked across Australia and the Asia Pacific to help groups get the buy-in and engagement they deserve.

1. What was the event, meeting, or objective you were using GroupMap to resolve?

Stakeholder review of the Model of Care for Palliative Care in Western Australia.

2. What were the details of the event in terms of size, name, and location? Is there a link we can refer to?

Over 100 passionate stakeholders (primary and specialist care, allied health, consumers, etc.) at a one-day forum in Perth, WA plus a further 13 regional and remote representatives via Webinar later in the month.

3. What was the main challenge you wanted to resolve?

How to gain really focused and pragmatic input on changes to the Models of Care from a diverse range of expert stakeholders in a way that allowed everyone to have a voice but reached some pretty clear consensus before 4 pm.

4. In what way/s did you use GroupMap?

We created a number of maps for the different workshop sessions throughout the day:

  • A ‘Burning Issues’ session straight upfront, within 3 mins of the forum beginning.
  • A service delivery ‘Gaps and Solutions’ session with the solutions specifically linked to particular gaps through the use of the comment function.
  • A ‘world café’ style session focused on the 5 priority areas for review within the Models of Care, and
  • A shared 10 year Vision session.

5. What was the response from the audience?

We worked in collaborative mode and the participants loved the ability to discuss and enter their views in small groups plus build on other groups’ input. Most of all though, they were astonished that a level of consensus could be reached with 100 people present and that they could leave at 4 pm with a good idea of the overall strategic direction and a clear head. The sponsor closed the forum by saying ‘after running things this way, I don’t think we can ever go back to butchers’ paper and texts, this absolutely changes how engage’.

6. What outcomes/output did you achieve from using GroupMap?

With the wealth of input from the GroupMap sessions and plenaries, we developed a detailed Outcomes Report for the client to guide their review of the Models of Care with the smaller Steering Group. At a deeper level, the stakeholder group was engaged and felt a greater sense of ownership over the changes to the Models of Care that will affect their daily work and their patients.

7. Is there anything else you want to say to people considering using GroupMap for themselves?

We always stress to participants that GroupMap is the technology but the discussion between people is the really catalytic part, where change will occur. So make sure you’ve designed some robust facilitation processes to coincide with GroupMap and you’ll be sweet!

Read more about Tuna Blue’s mission statement here!

“GroupMap has fundamentally changed the way we do business. As a facilitation consultancy that spent the last 20 years on butchers’ paper, GroupMap has met a real need for ourselves and our clients. Plus it’s made us review and refresh the way we facilitate workshops.”

Will Bessen, Tuna Blue Facilitation

Using GroupMap for group facilitation at workshop

Case Study: AHCWA Uses Interactive Tools to Facilitate Engaging Workshops

Setting the scene

Aboriginal Health Council of WA (AHCWA) is the peak body for the 22 Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services and was looking to engage their delegates with interactive facilitation tools at their conference.

The conference involved sixteen wonderful presenters discussing subjects ranging from environmental health issues to sexual health and social issues. 12 engaging workshops over 2 days involved key stakeholders from healthcare professionals to community members to policymakers. GroupMap (workshop facilitation tool) captured thoughts, opinions, and potential solutions from over 250 participants in real-time. Read on to find out how.

How were the workshops run?

Each workshop began with a presentation and a short discussion involving the workshop issue. After discussion, the audience broke up into groups, with each table having a digital scribe to record thoughts and comments onto a private map.

Each table was able to contribute in real-time, as well as comment and vote on ideas they felt most strongly about. As participants did so, the results were displayed via projector for the whole room to see.

As the workshop progressed, it was great to see the culmination of the room’s ideas and audience response captured and displayed front and center. Participants brainstormed what issues currently exist, what are the gaps, what has worked well, and what needs to be done.

This ultimately culminated in a group discussion on concerns relevant to the group, with a range of possible solutions to propose to the government.

Top 5 takeaways for conference planners

  1. Driven by audience feedback

    Feedback from last year’s conference saw a need for more audience interaction and contribution and this was the driving force behind this year’s workshop structure. The engagement was semi-structured with a lightning presentation on a key topic, grouped table discussion which was captured, shared, and discuss with the whole group in real-time, followed by questions and comments from the room.

  2. Ask the right questions

    The questions you ask direct the minds of participants and guides discussion. In this case, the questions were focused on what are the existing gaps, and what solutions or steps should be taken. Clear and concise questions acted as signposts and made it difficult to wander off-topic.

  3. Using interactive workshop facilitation tools

    Collaboration is time consuming when people have to take turns speaking. Interactive facilitation tools  (in this case GroupMap) allowed workshops to rapidly collect and store ideas in order to dive right into the discussion. As ideas were shared on the big screen, all the views in the room could be seen and added to the goals of the event.

  4. Mix it up

    The conference also showcased a musical number from an Indigenous Youth Group, inspiring storytelling, and a plethora of different topics.

  5. Following through

    Often we go through all the hard work and forget to capitalize on our efforts. Collating all the sticky notes can be too daunting a task. As there were separate reports for each topic and workshop, this could then be easily reviewed and an action list created.

What was the reaction?

It was great to see everyone engaged and enjoying the workshop collaborations. Workshop facilitators were able to customize how the audience interacted with GroupMap (in this case mainly through voting on the most important ideas and issues) leading to a more effective and focused discussion. Having a real-time brainstorming tool allowed people to share their ideas and to have this captured in real-time.

Having concluded the interactive workshops it was time to wrap things up with a review of everyone’s comments and ideas. The facilitators printed off their reports during the morning tea break, and shortly after the group as a whole enjoyed each facilitator’s presentation on what workshop participants had to say about the issues at hand.

Looking for more?

Inspired to use GroupMap at your next conference? Start your free trial today, and if you need help or have any questions get in touch with us.

Easy Ways to Develop Key Collaboration Skills

groupmap-explores-way-to-help-you-level-up-your-collaboration-skills-so-your-team-can-work-better-together

Collaboration is when people work together to achieve a common goal; it’s a practice valued by the majority of top organizations.

Why?

When people work together, they can –  

  • solve problems faster
  • make better decisions
  • increase their productivity
  • Increase the likelihood of success

That’s right, with solid collaboration skills, actions become more efficient, and communication becomes more effective. It’s no wonder high-level collaboration skills are amongst the top-ranking soft skills employers look for when recruiting.

The great news is, you can easily improve your collaboration skills with these simple steps.

1. Be Open

Being open or open-minded means considering other points of view and trying to be empathetic to other people (even when you don’t agree with them).

Being open will help you –

  • Learn

It’s impossible to learn if you don’t encounter new knowledge and ideas. Expanding your boundaries and connecting with people who have different backgrounds, perspectives and experiences can help you discover new information and fresh ways of thinking.

  • Feel happy

Being open can help support a more optimistic outlook. It helps you explore new experiences, embrace new friendships and consider alternative ways of doing things, all while being less judgemental. 

  • Broaden your horizons

The bigger your world, the greater the number of possibilities that exist for you. Unpacking your existing beliefs and considering new ideas can help you gain fresh insight into the world and yourself.

  • Build resilience

Staying open to new ideas and experiences can help you become stronger. You learn to better contextualize failure, become more self-aware, develop mechanisms to better deal with uncertainty, and remain motivated.

Becoming more open is surprisingly easy –

  • Decide to be open

That’s right, making the conscious decision to consider other points of view and how others may feel will help you become more open-minded.

  • Listen

Engage with empathy, suspend judgment, and pay attention to what is being said. While it’s important to seek clarity if points aren’t clear and paraphrase to ensure you’ve understood things correctly, keep in mind this isn’t about what you think, but rather what you can discover.

  • Exhibit curiosity

Seek information and ask questions of others so you better understand their points of view; you can say things such as –

    • Tell me more.
    • What ideas were explored?
    • What was considered?
    • How was the decision reached?

and examine your own understanding by considering –

    • The reliability of your information (are they facts or opinions?)
    • How much you really know about the topic
    • The process you followed to reach your conclusion
  • Remain mindful of bias

Unfortunately, humans come fully equipped with a variety of inbuilt biases. There’s confirmation bias (where we unconsciously pay more attention to things that support our existing beliefs and ignore things that challenge those beliefs); anchoring (this sees us heavily value recent information or experiences and then use it to make judgments); the halo effect (we make the assumption that if a person, brand or organisation is good at one thing, they will be good at another); the Dunning-Kruger effect (we perceive ourselves to be smarter than we really are). 

There are many, many more types of bias. The important thing is to be aware they exist and to take active steps to overcome them.

  • Contextualise expertise

While it’s possible to know a lot; it’s simply not possible for someone to know everything. Strangely, those who consider themselves experts are the most likely to forget this, and tend to more easily dismiss the ideas of others. Additionally, experts are just as susceptible to bias as non-experts. 

When people are open to new information and ideas, decisions can be more creative and better informed.

2. Be Clear

Communicating clearly is essential no matter your role. When channels of communication break down, it’s likely efficiency, productivity and morale will too.

Successful collaborators are good communicators. They are aware that good communication helps to build rapport, stronger working relationships, and of course, convey information. 

They also know that not everyone likes to communicate in the same way; so below we look at the three different types of communication through the lens of collaboration.

  • Verbal communication

Always think before speaking. Giving yourself time to consider your question or response will help improve them.

Consider the words you use. Ensure you’re concise, and use language that’s accessible. Avoid jargon and include unnecessary detail. Once your point is conveyed, you can stop speaking.

Pay attention to tone. Using a friendly, warm tone gives the impression you are willing to engage while using a monotone will make you appear disinterested in the conversation. Paying attention to the tone others use is equally important; if someone is speaking softly, follow their lead; people are more likely to pay attention to voices that sound like their own.

  • Written communication

Keep the outcomes in mind. If you are looking for a way to capture the ideas and information generated during the collaborative session, obviously writing things down is the way to go. If participants record that information themselves it increases the likelihood that the information has been captured accurately. Having participants write down their ideas will also give them time to think about and structure their thoughts. If however, you hope participants will engage in healthy debate or dissent, doing so in writing requires a lot more effort than discussion and it may impact the level of effort participants are willing to direct to the collaborative process.

Consider time. Written communication is a great way to go if you wish to facilitate an asynchronous collaborative session, or if you are working with remote participants. In such a case, ensure you have conveyed timeframes clearly so people respond when you need them to. 

Use a collaboration tool. Using a tool designed to support your collaboration is a game-changer. Not only are they crafted to help you capture and share ideas, but they can also help you structure the collaborative process itself. Additionally, they include features such as surveys, polls, anonymous settings, idea tagging, grouping, and ranking. Participants can enter their own ideas and suggestions with the collaborative tool delivering real-time results and exportable reports that can be easily shared.

  • Non-verbal communication

Make eye contact. Our eyes (along with our eyebrows), can convey a number of nonverbal cues. We tend to look towards the person or thing that has our attention, so if you are staring out the window rather than looking at the person speaking during a collaborative session, it’s easy to tell where your focus lies. 

Maintain open posture. From our heads to our feet, how we position ourselves speaks volumes. We can convey defensiveness (crossed arms and legs), a lack of energy (slouched shoulders), and honesty (open palms). Adopting an open posture (sitting or standing up straight, facing the speaker) gives the impression that you are listening to what is being said. 

Use facial expressions. Facial expressions are the most used mechanisms we have that convey emotions. Interestingly, many facial expressions transcend cultures; a smile, for example, conveys a positive response no matter what language you speak. Engage with your facial expressions; while a quizzical expression will indicate more information is needed, and a smile can indicate agreement, a blank face can indicate a lack of engagement or indifference. People are more likely to respond to positive facial expressions than negative ones.

3. Be Organised

Members of the GroupMap team are big fans of being organized because it benefits you in so many different ways. It helps you get things done faster, makes meetings more effective, and supports the collaborative process.

Being organized will help you build and deliver a collaborative process within a safe environment. It will allow you to focus on the collaboration rather than the mechanics of it.

  • Send out placeholders to book participants well in advance. Holding a collaborative session at the start of a week and month will help you side-step slots that are traditionally aligned to deadlines.
  • Gather your equipment. Whether you’re using a whiteboard, flip charts, post-it notes, or an online tool, procuring the equipment you need sooner rather than later will free you up to deal with other details later.
  • Design your process. Be clear as to the steps you wish your participants to follow during the session. In broad terms, collaborative sessions tend to follow a combination of the following steps – 
    • Brainstorm
    • Review
    • Discuss
    • Vote or rate
    • Define next steps
  • Create space in your own schedule. Ensure you don’t have any pressing matters you will need to address just before the collaboration session. If you can avoid them, don’t schedule meetings immediately prior to the collaboration session, and allocate some time beforehand to deal with the unexpected (flip charts that have been borrowed and not returned, a manager who urgently needs the room you have booked, etc).
  • Follow up. After the session, circulate notes and action items. Check-in with participants to see if they need more information to address the actions allocated to them.

4. Be Critical

No, this isn’t suggesting you become judgemental; far from it. 

Considering something critically is doing so clearly and rationally. Critical thinking requires reason, it sees people actively exploring ideas rather than passively accepting them.  

A critical thinker will look for the links between ideas, and try to gather the information that ensures they have considered all perspectives. They will analyze and solve problems logically and systematically rather than relying on their instinct or intuition. 

To critically consider ideas, you could –

  • ask about the source of information
  • consider if it is a fact or opinion
  • ask if it’s time-proof
  • if the idea subject to any type of influence
  • weigh up pros and cons

To ensure everyone feels comfortable assessing ideas, start with your own. Encourage participants to critique the ideas you offered; have them use the above points to explore your suggestions. 

When collaborating, all ideas should be examined critically. Discussing ideas thoroughly will help them improve. 

Start Collaborating Today

The best way to develop collaboration skills is to practice them!

GroupMap is an online tool that can dramatically improve the outputs of collaboration sessions. 

Whether you’re conducting a collaborative meeting online, face-to-face, or a combination of the two, GroupMap can help you plan and deliver workshops where impactful ideas are generated.

Start your 14-day trial now!

Have more questions or would like a demo?

Zoom Break Out Rooms and GroupMap for Remote Meetings

Using Zoom break out rooms is great for creating smaller groups for discussion especially if you need to have larger virtual conferences, meetings or workshops. With its recent security upgrades and participants’ self-selection of rooms, it now makes it a little easier for people to navigate to their own space.  

You can use GroupMap for each breakout group to capture their ideas which can then be shared back with everyone during plenary. It’s a great way of making sure each group has its own space to think, but then have a quick and easy way for all the ideas to be shared and discussed.

For example, we have created a map for each Breakout room and provided the links to each team for their activity.

 

Breakout Rooms GroupMap and Zoon

Decide on the break out room activity

What is the actual activity you want participants to do? Do you simply want them to share and capture ideas, come up with a plan or perhaps a round robin discussion in a world cafe format style.  Depending on the activity, you can then choose HOW you want people to interact during break outs.

e.g.

  • “I want to create a separate activity or discussion map for each group”
  • “I have a series of activities for each group to work through with a facilitator”
  • “I want to have an open space where people can move in and out of various activities.”

Based on this, you can then set up your maps and workspaces accordingly and add instructions so that participants know what they should do when they first join the room and activity. 

With GroupMap you can either duplicate the same activity for all groups which can then be discussed per group, or into a single map for further discussion or action. You can also decide if you want groups to see ideas from others or just to have it to themselves for now.

Inviting people into Zoom or GroupMap

 
Assuming you have created your Zoom breakout rooms, you can either pre-assign people to each room, allow them to self select or allocate names to each break out room separately.
 
If you want separate activities for each group, then you have to share the link with the group chat or share with a designated facilitator. At this point, Zoom does not yet have the feature to allow you to add resources beforehand to each breakout group.
 

If you have a series of activities for each group, then share the workspace link.

GroupMap and Zoom Tip
Add GroupMap link to Zoom Chat or Invite

Each GroupMap or Workspace has a link which can be shared in the chat window in Zoom. This is useful if you don’t know who will be attending that day or you’ve created a new map. 

You can use the same link in your calendar or meeting invites. At this time, Zoom does not have the function to have preset links for each breakout room.

If you know who is coming, you can send them an email beforehand.

People can be invited as viewers, contributors or facilitators.

adding zoom link to GroupMap
Add your Zoom Link to GroupMap
You can also add a Zoom link to your GroupMap.
People can join a map, read the introduction (Or in this case check out the bar) and then click on the Zoom invite to join the conversation.

Provide clear instructions for participants in the breakout rooms

It’s common that when we enter a different room or space that we need a little help remembering what needs to be done in our small groups. A few simple instructions for each breakout room will help remind people what they are there to do. 

Here’s an example of a quick instruction in GroupMap for Brainstorm but you can add instructions for each step.  E.g. Vote for the most value added, the ones that you think are most important or, the ones that you think are most creative.

Breakout Group instructions

Facilitating remote breakout sessions at meetings

 

There’s a couple of nifty features in GroupMap that will help your facilitators manage each break out group. This allows each small group facilitator to set timers and move everyone to the same page when doing the activity.

 

Use the Timer to keep conversation flowing.

Zoom uses a session timer to help manage time as well as the bringing everyone back to the main group page. However, you can also set additional timers for each stage to help time box activities.

Move all participants to step

 

Move everyone to a specific step in a map

This is handy for bringing everyone in the workspace to the same map so that you are literally on the same page.

If you have several groups with different facilitators, then keep the maps separate so that they can self manage.

 

Screen Share the results.

Move from group to group and screen share the maps on Zoom to allow people to speak from each group. Enabling screen sharing on Zoom allows a spokesperson from each group to speak up, or you can take the lead and share you screen with everyone.

You can also lock the map to prevent further changes or click on ideas to add additional comments and insights.

Other handy tips for facilitating remote team meetings

  • If you don’t know when people will join your session, add links to your Zoom Background or at the footer of your presentation so they can join your map at any time.

  • Use a “Lights Out” technique when it comes time to individual brainstorming and thinking. This means cameras and mics off so that people can focus on their own thoughts and come up with their own ideas during the break out room.

  • Add movement to your meeting. Just like in real life, use the time that people would get up and move to a breakout room as a time for people to stand up, walk around and then move into the break out room.

  • If you want to prevent further changes to the map, you can always lock a step, or lock the whole map.

  • Manage the ratio between facilitators and participants. A good rule of thumb is 1 facilitator to 7 participants for a 30 minute session.

  • If you are looking for ways to allocate people to different rooms, can add topics to a map and have people add their name near each topic. They can then simply move to the relevant room, or you can allocate them.

A map is the specific activity that you want each group in the break out to do. A workspace is a collection of map activities that they can do in succession. You can create a set of activities for each group and use one link and have participants navigate through each map one at a time in a single workspace. Otherwise, you can use individual maps if it is just a single activity.

Yes, you sure can. Just right click on the map or workspace on your home page and you can replicate the map or workspace or save a map as template. 

We use minimal websockets and also don’t transfer large amounts of video and audio so our requirements are pretty low in terms of what is needed for a compatible device and bandwidth capability.

There are no specific Zoom integrations at this point.

Depending on the number of facilitators and participants, an event licence fee for 1 month starts at $60USD.  Please contact us at info@groupmap.com for more information and to get a quote.

Absolutely. You can contact our team directly who can provide you with general advice at info@groupmap.com.

We can also work in partnership with you to directly set up and run your maps on an hourly or full contract purpose.

So whether or not you want to self-service or full service, we can help. You can also check out our list of certified facilitators who can assist with helping to run your event.

Have more questions or would like a demo?

GroupMap Helps ISACA – A Global IT Summit – Turn Virtual

ISACA Virtual Event

Introducing ISACA

ISACA (pronounced “eye-SOCK-uh”) is a global, professional organization for IT audit, security, governance, risk, and privacy professionals. For more than 50 years, ISACA has equipped individuals with knowledge, credentials, education, and community to help progress their careers and transform their organizations. 

The organization has more than 145,000 members worldwide, most of whom are affiliated with a local chapter. These 220 “little versions” of ISACA are located in more than 90 countries and are run entirely by volunteers who are elected by the members of their respective chapter. 

Megan Moritz is the Director of Global Volunteer Engagement at ISACA Global, headquartered in the suburbs of Chicago, Illinois, USA, and oversees the teams that interact and work with all ISACA volunteers, at the chapter and global levels. 

“The chapter relations team ensures the highest level of support is provided to these individuals, equipping them with the tools and resources they need to run their respective ISACA chapter.”

The need to move to a virtual event

ISACA Global Summit A Virtual Event

Every other year, ISACA invites more than 450 chapter leaders to attend its Global Leadership Summit (GLS) to help define the strategic vision for the organization. In 2020, due to the global pandemic, the event was held virtually. 

Despite going online, ISACA’s goals for GLS remained the same:

  • make the event as interactive and as much like an in-person event as possible; 
  • obtain input from attendees;
  • ensure the most impactful ideas rose to the top; and
  • share output with ISACA’s senior leadership team and Board of Directors.

To deliver the above goals, the facilitators of the event needed a tool that would assist with the facilitation process. 

“We were looking for something that would automate a lotif not allof the processes and were also brainstorming different methods/matrices we thought would work for this particular event.”

“We wanted the tool to be highly intuitive/easy to use, secure, and web-based, so people did not need to install anything on their computer.” 

GroupMap to support ISACA’s Virtual Event

Prior to making the decision to hold GLS virtually, ISACA had already planned to use GroupMap as an effective means of capturing data and quickly collating or elevating the information as they walked tables through a facilitated process. 

The team wanted to find an effective way to collect information that was easier and faster than what had been accomplished in the past via use of flip charts, Post-It notes, scrap paper, and emails. 

“Once we knew we the event was going to take place virtually, GroupMap still made perfect sense. We know it is not limited to a virtual setting, and we are excited to use it again at a future, in-person event.”

The ISACA team requested a demo with GroupMap to explore how it could be used for digital facilitation during GLS and were immediately impressed with the functionality and flexibility of the platform. 

Successful and Engaging Virtual Global Summit 

The ISACA team attributed GroupMap’s intuitive platformfeatures that promote efficiency and accuracy, along with the organization’s personalised serviceas winning elements to support ISACA’s first-ever virtual Global Leadership Summit (that was held in August 2020). 

Over 80 easy to use and customizable templates

“From the beginning, we knew we wanted to use the SOAR matrix, but after Jeremy shared all the other options, we started to think about how we could use two different matrices to achieve an even more impressive end result.” 

“We also thought, after three days of being in the SOAR matrix, people would be ready to move onto something different.”

The team used the How/Now/Wow matrix for the last two days of the virtual event, and found it to be just as user-friendly and intuitive as the SOAR matrix. 

soar-analysis

Download report in one click 

“The most impressive part of GroupMap came with all the report functionality. We were able to generate what we needed so quickly and efficiently, it was mind-boggling.”

Their team indicated that, from a feature perspective, GroupMap’s reporting capability was their favourite. 

Share Results GroupMap Virtual Event

Personalized and helpful service 

“The willingness of the GroupMap team to guide us through things, answer questionssometimes repeatedlyand take calls at odd hours, given that one facilitator was in Chicago and the other in Hawaii, was extraordinary.”

“But the most exceptional aspect of the experience was how the GroupMap team truly wanted to understand the entire process. They wanted to make sure GroupMap was not just a tool we used, but an experience people would remember. It was awesome!”

 

Strategic Results for ISACA

ISACA Global Summit

The team commented that having GroupMap as a digital facilitation tool meant the meeting facilitators could focus on preparing and running the virtual event. In addition, attendees knew the data they entered was going to be immediately visible. This saved everyone involved an immense amount of time and work after the event concluded. 

“Instead of requesting information via email, pestering people with reminders, and worrying about people forgetting to do things, we had all the data we needed as soon as the event concluded. The participants could see and feel that, as well, which made for a very powerful conclusion.”

GroupMap’s easily downloadable report feature meant that the 475 attendees of the virtual summit were able to develop and provide the senior leadership team and Board of Directors with detailed action plans for nine key initiatives.

“These important plans will be crucial information used by the ISACA Board of Directors during their strategic planning session on 21-22 September 2020.”

“Details of which action plans/strategic items were included in both the short- and longer-term planning will be shared during a GLS follow-up session in Q4 2020, to which all GLS participants will be invited.”

Want to try GroupMap as your virtual event solution? 

Schedule a demo with a GroupMap team member at a day and time that suits you best or have a go of our easy to use, supported online collaboration tool for FREE for 14 days today.

The Outside Develops Virtual Workshop To Help Organizations Move Forward

the-outside-team

The Outside’s forward movement

https://us04web.zoom.us/j/74140227738?pwd=cmRTUEM5MXZuSk43b3FaeDIzWlFDUT09

The Outside is a cohort of talented strategists, coaches, facilitators, evaluators and project leads who help set the stage for organizations to grow, change and find a way that benefits them most. 

The team is supported by an energetic back-end team, covering legal, branding, design, communications and administration.

The Outside is committed to supporting systems change with equity at the centre. “This means that issues of race, class, gender, and other issues of power are foundational to any systems change efforts The Outside takes on.  They do this with a range of international partners and clients. 

The Outside team uses three key interdependent elements to make their work successful and unique in the field of systems change and equity:

  1. Systems Change Strategy;
  2. Participatory Leadership; and 
  3. Developmental Evaluation + Prototyping. 

Tim Merry and Tuesday Ryan-Hart are co-founders of The Outside and together, with their team, they’ve achieved many milestones, including:

“Our approach and business model has been developed over 20 years of working on the front line of significant change efforts. The Outside is not a service provider for the individual elements but a delivery partner in a combined approach for systems change.”

Tuesday Ryan-Hart
Tuesday Ryan-Hart
tim-merry
Tim Merry

The search for a virtual workshop solution

As a result of COVID-19, and the inability to deliver any in-person training, The Outside had to re-develop and deliver five virtual workshops on capacity building for the New York City Administration for Children’s Services Workforce Institute (NYC ACS WI), in June 2020.

The Outside virtual workshop with NYC Administration services

The Outside had been working to transform the Workforce Institute and make the child welfare system more equitable and responsive. To achieve this goal, they needed to deliver workshops was that allowed staff to:

  • get connected and see a bigger picture together, 
  • identify how we will work to support each other in a post-COVID world and,
  • to articulate some of the leadership to articulate some of the leadership opportunities that could be realized at the Workforce Institute at this challenging time. 

In combination with Zoom, The Outside was looking for a technology partner to help them deliver an engaging virtual workshop experience.

The group knew that they can do the strategic work online – with groups of almost any size – the challenge was to humanize the virtual workshops, bringing in the relationship / magic / synchronicity that happens when people meet face-to-face.

“We were looking to humanize and energize our online delivery. It was important to us to be able to create the conditions for participants to collaborate in iterative processes with each other.” 

GroupMap chosen as a virtual workshop tool 

The Outside knew that they had to be able to create powerful and practical virtual workshop at the centre of their delivery of systems change, rather than as an add on. 

The team immediately started researching platforms that would work with sophisticated and participatory process design and ended up landing on a shortlist of Stormz, Powernoodle or GroupMap

“GroupMap – Jeremy specifically – seemed to fit us really well. We deliberately look for a good fit to our mindset and approach as we talk to partners and team members. They must be curious, open, ready to learn and adapt and bring a strong skill set that meets our needs.”

“In addition to his obvious tech skills, understanding of process and general willingness to be in it with us figuring it out, it was also great that Jeremy was a point of contact. We want our team and delivery partners to reflect the type of diverse world we are working towards.”

“It also had to be simple to use. No big explanations, click here and it works. GroupMap gave us all of that! Great.”

Virtual workshop collaboration at its best!

The Outside used GroupMap to deliver a range of different processes and formats that accommodate the groups they worked with in a virtual workshop environment. 

This included breakouts, participants identifying, clustering themes and self organizing into work groups, presentation, open conversations, participants placing themselves on a model. 

In a face-to-face workshop, they would have taped out the model on the floor and asked participants to stand on it. The Outside were able to replicate this on GroupMap as an online workshop activity. 

“We used this methodology as a way to feed back from smaller breakouts and conversations and identify themes and outliers for the whole group to consider. We gave groups graphic templates to fill out to advance their work, sliders to identify where they stand on issues and proposed action plans.”

Tim Merry, co-founder of The Outside,  identified specific key features of GroupMap that made the platform highly suitable to turn face-to-face activities into online workshops that kept the human element of engagement:

  1. Collaborate anytime, anywhere: GroupMap allows The Outside’s clients to collaborate anytime, anywhere.

    When working with international clients, navigating multiple time zones, nationalities, backgrounds, beliefs, we rely on a platform that works with us. We are often diving into issues of equity – race, class, gender, power distribution.”

    “The platform we work with has to work fluidly for these types of topics to sustain momentum in an online space. If we do not address these topics in large scale systems change we will make lots of change but very little meaningful difference.” 
  2. Customised templates: Although GroupMap comes with 60 best practice templates, The Outside found the ability to build templates based on their models and experiences invaluable. This way they were able to recreate their online workshops with their own style and methodologies.

    GroupMap templates for virtual workshop

  3. Easy combination with other technology: Tim explained that one of his most favourite features is the ability to use GroupMap with other online meeting and workshop platforms such as Zoom.

    “While Zoom provides the personal break out rooms, GroupMap serves as the house in which to store our real-time thinking, ideas, and next steps.” 
  1. A GroupMap expert at hand: Having a GroupMap point of contact help adapt and design their online workshops on the fly have really benefited The Outside’s online workshops. “We were able to respond real time to changes in the direction driven by the group and our design expertise. I would recommend using a GroupMap facilitator to start with.” 

Achieving more than just online collaboration & client satisfaction 

The Outside were able to continue critical work during the COVID-19 full shut down with their partners and clients by using GroupMap to translate their face-to-face activities into online workshops. 

“Unbelievable really. We pivoted, we adapted and we came back with a solution that is GroupMap and got to work again.” 

The participants involved in The Outside’s online workshops were able to be highly engaged due to the ease of use of the GroupMap platform and various features – such as real time collaboration, ability to visually see outliers and themes and interact with each other’s ideas via comments, thumbs up or down and votes. 

Virtual workshop feature of GroupMap
Thumbs up or down voting feature in GroupMap

“The consistent feedback we receive is that people appreciate that GroupMap is user-friendly, and they really like the ability to collaborate and document in real-time. We also hear from folks that people appreciate seeing the bigger picture when we show group learning and aggregated themes / outliers and an ability to interact with each other’s posts through comments and likes, etc.” 

Lastly, The Outside identified that through GroupMap, they have been empowered to further their commitment to implement large scale systems change towards greater equity. 

“As a global consultancy we often fly all over the world burning carbon and contributing to climate change, while at the same time doing good work to help shift some of our most entrenched and stuck systems.”

“The irony is not lost on us. We had committed over the coming years to massively reduce our carbon footprint to get to a point of net zero carbon emissions. The shift to GroupMap has radically accelerated our ability to do that. What I had expected us to take 2 years to get to, we did it in two months! It has been a massive lift but a worthwhile one.”

“I believe we can now build a model going forward which will enable us to work globally and massively reduce the carbon footprint of our organization. Our team alone lives and works in 5 different countries – our clients are spread even further.”

Want to try GroupMap for your next online workshop? 

Schedule a demo with a GroupMap team member at a day and time that suits you best or have a go of our easy to use, supported online collaboration tool for FREE for 14 days today.

5 activities for creating engaging workshops with impact

Creating engaging workshops is hard work, with research showing that our capacity for attention is lower than a goldfish!

In addition to this, the digital noise around us can be so loud that only something almost extreme can get through, that we expect so much more from movies, a brand or products to get our attention. 

Likewise, we expect no less from our trainers and/or facilitators. 

Here at GroupMap, creating innovation to make workshops, meetings and ideas more collaborative, engaging and have impact excites us. 

When you need the most creative ideas, honest answers or innovative solutions, GroupMap lets you create anonymous brainstorming sessions. Individual (or silent) brainstorming means that everyone can add their ideas and concepts without being influenced by others, including the boss! 

Share inspirations, pictures, hand-drawn images or notes without fear, production blocks or bias.

Here’s five activities suggestions using our workshop tools to more effectively facilitate amazing conversations!

 

Activity 1: Set your team culture to start an engaging workshop 

Start your workshop by setting and validating your team culture. This means getting shared agreement on expectations, objectives and also the ever so important house rules! 

You can easily do this using the Team Canvas ready to use template in GroupMap. The team canvas has been developed to create team alignment, minimize conflict and build a productive culture. 

Engaging workshops with team canvas

Activity 2: Define problems  

Have you ever heard of the saying that a problem defined is half solved? Create engaging workshops with impact by getting participants to brainstorm through solutions, ideas, and alternatives to defined problems. 

Then engage them even more by asking participants to rank and decide on the best possible outcomes. 

GroupMap’s Problem Solving template can help guide a group from defining a problem to deciding on solutions and measuring results. You can then use dot votes to indicate the key points in each step. 

Define problems
A simple 5 step approach that takes people from problem definition through to solutions.

Activity 3: Use the impact effort matrix

Once you have brainstormed solutions to the defined problem/s, you can further engage workshop participants by getting them involved in the process of prioritising ideas and actions based on impact and effort 

GroupMap’s Impact Effort Matrix template is a time saving technique that helps your team prioritize what to do next. 

Here you can rank activities to discover quick wins through to major projects. 

Define impact for engaging workshops
Prioritise projects and initiatives based on impact and effort.

Activity 4: Risk mapping and stakeholder mapping 

Once you and your workshop participants have prioritized actions, you might need to look through what are the risks associated with each action and which stakeholders do you need to consider with each action. 

We recommend creating engaging workshops in this phase by using two methods:

  • Map risks: position risks based on likelihood and impact. Using our template you can dot vote on key risks and decide how actions can be taken. The results here can be used to develop a risk management plan. 
  • Map your stakeholders : improve your communication strategy by deciding who you need to monitor and who you need to manage closely. You can do this easily using our Stakeholder Map template. 

stakeholder-mapping

Activity 5: End an engaging workshop with a retrospective 

At the end of your workshop, it’s important to get feedback on what they think was great and what can be improved. It also helps with recording what needs to be done next (aka an action list) and what still needs to be addressed. 

Using a template such as the WRAP retrospective in GroupMap you can use a technique or game that helps your participants form original ideas by sharing what their Wishes are for an ideal sprint, their Appreciation of what has happened, any Risks they foresee and Puzzles that remain unsolved. 

WRAP up an engaging workshop
Reflect on what went well for the meeting as well as what you could do to improve next time.

Try these five activities with GroupMap today!

Want to try these five inspirations to create more engaging workshops with impact at your next workshop? 

You can today with 14 days free trial. 

Also, check out some of our 60+ group decision-making templates, some of which we’ve mentioned here.

Top 3 Metrics To Measure Your Workshop Success

GroupMap brainstorming

Everyday, tens of thousands of workshops are being run around the world in companies, organisations and workplaces, to explore a specific topic, transfer knowledge, solve identified problems or create something new.

Through GroupMap’s work and knowledge centre, we know that many workshop facilitators are keen to measure the impact of the workshops they organise and run. There are many positive reasons to measure a workshop success:

  • If your workshops are funded, good measurements can convince funders to maintain and support the work that you do.
  • Encourage people to attend and feel satisfied that the work that you are doing with your workshops is worthwhile and making a positive difference,
  • Allow you to compare workshops over time and show improvement or the need for adapting the workshop to be more successful for the intended audience.
  • Gives you a way to improve practice, and deliver more value for clients and participants.
  • Helps to engage the audience and to give the audience a sense of agency.

In this post, we will look at three types of workshop success metrics that gives you a good measure of the workshops you run! We’ll then show you how to use GroupMap’s Survey feature to collect these easily.

1. Workshop specific metrics 

workshop metrics

Each workshop topic will come with its own sets of success metrics based on the topic at hand – i.e. what we want participants to learn – through to the structure and content of the workshop. These metrics measure the outcomes and goals of the workshop itself.

Some questions include:

  • How much more knowledge or understanding have you gained from the workshop in comparison to before you started?
  • What do we believe is our return on time invested for this meeting? Was it worth our time?
  • Were there any topics you thought should have been covered in the workshop that was not?
  • What can be improved in terms of helping you understand the information or reach the outcomes?
  • How well do we think we achieved the goal of the workshop today?

2. Individual goal setting metrics 

individual goal metrics

Another way to measure the success of your workshops is by inviting each participant to set goals of what they would like to achieve, personally / individually, by being part of the workshop, and seeing if they achieved these by the end of your delivery. 

These individual metrics can also be used when participants walk away from the workshops with a concrete plan of action of what else they might want to learn, discover, or practice as a result. 

Here are some individual goal setting questions that can get your participants thinking about what they want to see/get by being part of your workshop:

  • What are the top 3 things I would like to achieve from attending this workshop & did I achieve them?
  • What has this workshop made me realize I need to in terms of ?
  • What important lessons can I bring back to my colleagues and organization from the workshop?

3. Good workshop leadership & facilitation metrics

facilitator metrics

Our recent case study conversations with workshop facilitators David Clark (of Telescope Advisers) and Dr Zakhar Maletyski (of Water Harmony Global Initiative) have shown us again the importance of having good leadership to run workshops.

Good workshop leadership is the ability to be able to encourage brainstorming and discussions, make everyone feel comfortable to participate and share their ideas, while making sure everything is on schedule and on time. 

For us, measuring good leadership is one of the most important workshop metrics and something that you can ask your participants for feedback. Questions you can ask include:

  • Did your workshop facilitator keep the workshop running smoothly and on time?
  • On a scale of 1 – 10, with 10 being excellent, how would you rate your facilitator’s skills in making sure the workshop was engaging and interesting? 
  • What advice would you like to share with your facilitator to make the workshop better led?
  • What did you enjoy most from your workshop facilitation?

Gathering & collecting success metrics from your workshop

There are many ways to gather all of the above metrics for your workshop. The most common way to do this is of course via a survey. 

There are also many ways and digital tools available to collect your survey, from paper based directly after your face-to-face workshop or a follow-up email using Survey Monkey, Google Forms or many other survey services out there. 

If you’re already using GroupMap’s templates, maps and features to run an online brainstorming session for your workshop, then why not take advantage of the survey functionality to keep your participants in the same space and using a tool they’re already familiar with?

How to create a quick survey for your meeting

  1. In your map or meeting template, browse to the side menu to CUSTOMISE YOUR MAP.
  2. Then ADD A STEP called Survey

    workshop metrics survey

  3. Choose your questions type based on the type of metric you want to capture. SAVE CHANGES and you are now ready to go.

survey in groupmap

Ready to get the most out of your next virtual workshop?

Get in touch or try GroupMap FREE with a 14 day trial today! 

Virtual Executive Event with GroupMap- from analogue to digital in 3 days

telescope-advisers

david-clarke-virtual-event-facilitator

Executive events for fast-growth companies 

Telescope Advisers is a management consultancy based in Georgia, Atlanta, with a focus on creating value and impact for fast-growth companies. Since 2000, its principal consultant, David Clark, has helped businesses and organisations around the world to bring clarity, focus and alignment. 

David outlined some of key highlights of Telescope Advisers’ work: 

  • A five year strategy for a $150m extension of the North Carolina state health system;
  • Business planning and strategies for implementation for Habitat for Humanity’s world-wide country programs, which became the most requested service by the organisation.

To deliver these results, Telescope Adviser would conduct management workshops, executive events and retreats. 

“Telescope Adviser’s retreats typically involve plenary sessions before breaking into smaller workshop groups for brainstorming and detailed discussions, captured on white boards or flip charts that will then need to be recorded or transcribed” said David. 

 

Pandemic pushed for executive event to go virtual

David had planned, months in advance, for a four day executive event involving participants from Australia, South Africa and multiple cities across the U.S. 

However, the Friday before the event was due to begin, countries, including the U.S. imposed immediate travel restrictions as part of their COVID-19 plans.

“Obviously a face to face meeting became impossible and waiting for things to improve before holding the retreat was also not an option because it would have significantly impacted the project schedule of the organisation we were working with,” explained David. 

It was decided by all stakeholders involved that the event should go ahead and be delivered in a virtual executive event format. 

“Everyone agreed on videoconferencing to deliver the event, and Zoom was an obvious choice, but the question remained on how do we manage virtual collaborative discussions and decision making process?”  

 

Creating a global virtual executive event in 3 days & counting

On the same Friday that domestic and international travel were being grounded almost worldwide, David began a frantic search for an online tool that could support virtual executive meetings and events, allow for online collaboration and is easy for everyone – with different levels of technology competence – can use. 

David recalled that his search generated many options but many were discounted because they were either too confusing to set up or complicated to use. 

“Time was ticking before the virtual executive event was meant to start on the Monday, before I recalled reading about an online brainstorming tool called GroupMap in a blogpost,” said David.

“A quick Google search, a read on the GroupMap website and an intuitive quick demo personally from its CEO, Jeremy Lu, convinced me that this is the most suitable and supported tool to run my first virtual executive event.” 

GroupMap’s features of 60 brainstorming and decision making templates (called Maps) that can be easily customised, the ability to create own maps to align with Telescope Adviser’s objectives, expectations or preferred formats were big ticks for David. 

“I was completely sold on the software and when I presented my proposal to the stakeholders, they were happy to proceed virtually on the Monday using Zoom and GroupMap,” said David.

 

GroupMap the right choice for virtual events!

“As soon as the virtual executive event kicked off on Monday, I knew we had made the right choice by using GroupMap,” David commented. 

As team breakouts occurred after the plenary session, participants started using GroupMap for brainstorming. 

voting-virtual-event
GroupMap for voting on ideas

These GroupMap features helped kept the participants on track and importantly, engaged:

  • Ability to create Workspaces by group and day and controlling access so that participants will only be able to access the maps for each workshop. This ensured everybody was on the same page for each of the virtual workshops, eliminating any confusion. 
  • Ease of use for sharing and voting that allowed all participants to input their ideas, comments, suggestions individually or collaboratively before proceeding to online voting and deciding on actions.
  • Facilitator’s ability to customise the process in GroupMap on the fly, including when participants were busy with digital brainstorming and input into the maps, so that it is possible to quickly pivot based on the situation or discussions on the day.
  • All inputs captured automatically, so there was no need to manually record information or to be concerned about not capturing an idea or losing notes. 
  • Sorting functionality made it easier for representatives of each group to use reports of prioritised ideas, actions, timelines to present when the virtual plenary session resumed.

Benefits of digital facilitation fully realised

“GroupMap literally salvaged our virtual executive global event. We would not have been able to have our workshop nor accomplished as much without this tool,” said David. 

soar-analysis-virtual-event
GroupMap’s SOAR Analysis Template

The flexible and customisable capabilities of GroupMap allowed David to run a number of proven approaches, normally done face to face, delivered online effectively. Some of these include:

  • SOAR (Strengths, Opportunities, Aspirations and Results) Analysis
  • ESVP (Explorer, Shopper, Vacationer, or Prisoner) Retrospectives
  • Purpose Retrospectives
  • Understanding and Defining Purpose
  • Pitch a BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal)
  • Impact on ideas
  • Core competencies

Using GroupMap also showed participants of the many positive benefits of digital facilitation:

  • Cost savings – As is expected with face-to-face events, there is considerable commitment of time and resources required prior and during the events. The booking of venues, travel, physical equipment hire – all adds up – and can be significantly reduced virtually.
  • Time savings – GroupMap’s automatic recording of ideas and discussions means no more hours of transcribing required!
  • Accessibility For organisations with tight travel budgets or resource constraints, GroupMap is a must-have for all virtual meetings. 

“We have always envisioned a world connected through technology. Now we know it has arrived and we are ready for this new era with empowering online tools such as GroupMap” said David.

“Next up for me is to use the software for a whole workshop and stop playing around with sticky notes. I am now a big fan of GroupMap.”

 

Want to try GroupMap for FREE? 

Schedule a demo with a GroupMap team member at a day and time that suits you best or have a go of our easy to use, supported online collaboration tool for FREE for 14 days today.