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5 Incredibly Useful Strategy Workshop Exercises

strategy workshop
5 incredibly useful strategy workshop exercises

A strategy workshop is an excellent way to refocus your team and get back on the path for growth. Any product based business will benefit from a strategy workshop but it needs to be a session that truly energises and inspires.

If you are new to this, I expect you are wondering "how do I do a strategy workshop?" and what kind of activities should be included in a strategic session like this?  If you’ve never hosted a strategy workshop before, how do you know what are the best activities to complete during the workshop?

To answer this, let’s look at five different examples for strategy workshop exercise ideas you can implement in your business. Hopefully, these will give you the inspiration to get started.

 

1. The Solution Board

For this exercise, you need a whiteboard and a single topic.

Here’s what you do. Write down the topic or challenge the business is facing on the whiteboard. Then, you give everybody five minutes or so to call out a solution to the problem.

The basic idea is this - every solution is written down and captured without editing, pre-judging or passing an opinion, you are simply free to contribute and suggest ideas.  At the end of the five minutes, you go through each answer and discuss them together.

By doing this, you get the creative energy flowing, and people can offer innovative ideas to problems without fear of being shot down for trying!  You create an open and safe space for fresh ideas to evolve. 

 

2. Competitor Elimination

If you’re going to get people to join in the workshop discussion, you need to make it fun. This is a good warm-up activity.

Pick a competitor in the industry - I like to encourage clients to pick an "arch enemy" competitor as it gets everyone fired up!  Next, have everyone around the table to suggest a way to disrupt their business. The only rules are that suggestions have to be legal and ethical, but beyond that, any offer is fair game :)

This kind of activity can be fun and helps get people relaxed and ready to contribute. Many people are reluctant to suggest anything in a workshop, so this mini session changes that.  It helps break down any barriers that might be in the room by joining you all together in a united fight against a mutual competitor.

 

3. What Would You Do?

This activity is a good one because it takes a unique stance and gives people the chance to voice their honest opinion about things.

What you do is go around the room and ask every person the same question:

“If you were in charge of the business for a day, what would you change?“

This exercise is good because it shows you what other people consider necessary and allows everyone to voice ideas that aren’t restrained by money or finances. 

It also makes it less personal in relation to your teams current roles and responsibilities. It helps everyone who is contributing to think at the most senior level in the business and tune into that strategic mindset needed for the rest of the Strategy Workshop

 

4. Dragon’s Den

This activity is a good one if you have all the department heads in the room. What you do is ask each one to pitch a business need to the rest of the room - a request they make up on the spot.

Regardless of whether it is more funding, different equipment, or a new chance to branch out, you can quickly get insight into how each department contributes within the business and what they feel the business truly needs to grow and evolve.

 

5. New Product Line

A final activity that can be successful is asking everybody which ONE product they would add to the current product range if they could.

By asking everyone, you can see what kinds of services or products the company is missing. This can be a great way to develop a fresh perspective and be bold about the types of product range extenders or innovations you may like to explore in your business growth plans this year.

 

Make It Happen In Your Business

So, these strategic exercises can be easily included in your agenda for a Strategy Workshop and are all centered around two important things:

1) getting people in the right mood to share and;

2) finding out what needs to be changed or looked at.

It’s hard as a growing business to pick a strategic direction everyone agrees upon, which is why it's vital to include sessions within the agenda that get everyone in a good mood and willing to engage!

 

Next Steps:

  • Consider if your business would benefit from some strategic time out - a chance to stop, breathe and reflect on where you are going and what exactly you are trying to achieve. 
  • When planning your Strategic Workshop, make sure you create an agenda that will inspire fresh thinking and create opportunities for everyone to participate. 
  • If you would like my help in delivering your Strategy Workshop and creating a 3 year roadmap for business growth, then please book a call for an open and honest chat about your business and to see how I can help you. 
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