After an inspirational two days in Toulouse and a desire to implement lasting change in my organisation, I have been given the support and permission to start a design thinking process for how we communicate across our Multi-Academy Trust (MAT).
As our MAT grows towards 20 schools we will need to be able to communicate effectively across all schools and via the central team that I work in. It feels like just adding more email accounts would not be the solution, so what is? Far be it for me to answer that question, we have many talented people across our organisation so I hope to facilitate their ideas through a design thinking process.
Create the project team
We need to create a project team who will begin this journey that I hope will embed across the entire MAT. It needs to be:
- Representative of the entire organisation
- Keen to be part of a process of innovation
The team will need to understand that their daily job descriptions are left at the door for this process
“Innovation does not respect departmental boundaries” McIntosh, Ewan. How to Come Up with Great Ideas. Edinburgh: NoTosh, 2014. Print.
I was going to send an email but my CEO made an astute observation and suggestion. If we are looking for innovative ways to communicate effectively then maybe the recruitment should be communicated in an interesting way… tous chez!
Lets design think this with 100 ideas in 10 minutes:
- email with a long explanation of the project
- email a video of me talking about the project
- email a poster about the project
- put up a poster in the office
- fly a plane with a banner over the school
- have a treasure hunt and project team is the ones who complete it first
- send a word by email each day to show poor communication
- create a video via a QR code
- send everyone a copy of Ewan’s book with a note inside
- pin up paper with little tear off slips like you had a uni to get a room-mate
- Have a person with a “golf sale” sign while I sit in an office waiting for people to come and have a look
- buy advertising on TV during Gogglebox
- create a radio advert to broadcast
- set off the fire alarm and stand in the playground with a loud-hailer to inform everyone of the project
- send a survey where people assess which role they fulfil in a team, then pick the right mixture.
- Put numbers underneath everyone’s desk and randomly select people to join the team
- Set off carrier pigeons from Cornwall with a message inviting colleagues to join the team
- Use the force to make them want to join the team “this is not the method of communication you are looking for”
- Offer cake and tea in a meeting room and then announce my project
- Send a Google form around where people can
- watch a video
- identify their role in a team
- express an interest in getting involved
- Have a meeting (you can tell I am running out of ideas…and ten minutes is up!)
I have demonstrated why one needs a project team to power the ideas along and lead to innovative change. Now to get one…
After various attempts at making a video, animated gifs and other media I decided that we all communicate best over an impromptu piece of cake. Consequently I am going to lay on cake and that will lure people to my invitation to get involved:
First question… Why do we need to communicate any differently?