Creativity the Lego Way

What can adding a third dimension mean for your business meetings?  And can it help with creative thinking skills?

Using building blocks such as Lego in a business setting can help you tap into areas of creative thinking. We often find it easier to listen and  engage in problem-solving while using our hands. Many of us remember making plastic in school. Yet few of us remember the lecture. Using Lego to encourage problem-solving and creative thinking works in the same way. Engaging our minds with visual, and tactile methods allows us to discover new connections.

 A strategic Lego sessions may consist of the following parts, which engages the whole brain in the thinking.

  • Constructing
  • Giving meaning
  • Storytelling
  • Reflecting

A facilitator may probe questions for the group and the answers should be provided through model building. The model building provides a safe environment where the participants can share information and take risks while solving the problem. Complex information is shared through storytelling and the conversations that members are engaged in while building helps the thinking.

  • Participants have to express themselves in forms, not in abstract concepts. They cannot hide behind technical jargon.
  • The session made cross functional conversation possible, because of the same reason. The participants get a new language, that of the Lego blocks.
  • The conversation cannot be  woolly and vague. The message can also be in Lego blocks, in lay-out, in symbols at the spot defined with the other participants.

Every individual has the capacity to learn creative skills. What do we mean by creative skills? Well, these three skills may be included

  •  The skill  to generate ideas, create things that are new, surprising and have value – either virtual or real.
  • Generating ideas within a system or framework. Or creating ideas while taking  restrictions and limitations into account.
  • Being imaginative and extending ideas.

So how can Lego help you shine in your thinking, making connections and creating something interesting and new?

Let us first look at the case where you read the building instruction and go over the parts to build the model. Often at some point you will detect a new way to  build.You may dismantle the model a create a new yet slightly different model. If you use Lego in a group, each individual creates something different. This is similar to the demands of creativity in real life where there are certain things that you can or cannot do when you are building a model.

Children often use the Lego parts to assemble something that is part of their imagination. The plastic parts are used to extend the boundaries between the imaginary world and the physical world. It is a systematic approach to creativity where allows a child to create entirely new models, but only within the boundaries of the Lego system. Children can imagine possibilities and modify and experiment with their creations.

Click here for inspiration.

Photo: “Toys 3D” by Idea go

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