Two weeks ago, I facilitate a quarterly meeting of a distributed team. They met in person only once a quarter during this meeting.
I chose to start the meeting with an exercise to share their feeling about the last quarter. I asked:
Can you draw a line representing your happiness level during this period?
The levels are represented by weather symbols that make them more understandable for the people of this team who are coming from several countries in the world. They almost all chose to comment the drawing when they were drawing the line, and when they were not, I asked them to comment, and after that I thank each of them for sharing.
I was amazed by the amount of information shared during this simple exercise about their general feeling about their work, what make them tick from holidays to specific achievements, learnings, relation established with other people and so on…
I feel also that the state of mind of the whole group was best prepared to review the results achieved during the last quarter.
On the second day, in front of the drawing, I start by thanking them again to have shared their feelings about the last quarter and I asked them to use one or two post-it notes to answer this second question:
What are you proud of?
Once again, a good question to understand what’s important for the individuals in the team, and a good way to set the stage for the day.
If you try this, I would appreciate your feedbacks.