When teaching a Lean Change Management class, we usually let the attendees choose which of the proposed Lean Change Canvases they want to work on as a group, or several groups when the class is a bit bigger. I noticed the Story Telling Canvas was often left out, and when I asked the attendees why, they often mentioned things like: “It doesn’t seem to be as impactful as the others.”, or “It’s unclear to me how to work with this.”.
During the last class, we changed our way of working and specifically guided the attendees in using the different canvases and debrief on what the strength and weakness of each canvas was. The Story Telling Canvas turned out to be the only one who got featured on the training “AHA-Wall” as having brought an AHA-moment to someone.
And here’s why.
The Story Telling Canvas
Level of usage: team level
When to use: for teams and individuals.
So how do you fill it in?
The story is told from the point of view of the team. They reminische about the past, what was good, how things worked, why they liked some things. It’s important to start with the positive and make sure the team doesn’t feel like they were doing things “wrong”. Let them write the most important things on post-its and create their memories on the canvas.
But then things changed, and doing these things became hard. Something is off and we don’t really know why, but we know what feels wrong, takes a lot more effort than it used to, seems like we’re doing things for no reason whatsoever. And this change in effort has an impact…
Because of things going wrong or being more difficult, things are already changing: maybe you lost customers to the competition, or morale in the team is at an all time low, people are having long discussions with not results… let people write it all down and visualise it on the canvas.
Enters your change vision: it’s to answer all of these problems that a change is proposed! And for the team, this is the part of the change they need to focus on in order to make life better again.
We ask the team what they are willing to commit to in order to support this change. Of course they will need help from other people within the organisation (change management, their own management, HR, coaches), so the canvas invites them to voice these needs. And sometimes, the team can immediately identify some quick wins, so be sure to create space for these and recognize any effort that has gone into those. It might be half the distance you need to cover once you have these listed up!