Imagine what it would be like to have 20 high impact members of your organization talking at the same time, but in a way that everyone can be clearly heard and fully build on each other’s ideas. It’s not a concept, it’s a proven method that we have employed for over ten years of client work utilizing advanced electronic brainstorming tools in an approach we call the Advanced Strategy Lab (ASL). The Advanced Strategy Lab features base software developed by WIQ/Ynsyte that has been specifically designed to support open group brainstorming and assessment sessions. Participants are guided through a planned session agenda by a skilled facilitator who has experience in software collaboration technology as well as client subject issues. The specific tools available support a wide range of group collaboration activities:
Open/anonymous electronic brainstorming
Ability to categorize key ideas/themes
Ability to electronically prioritize the key ideas and themes
Electronic survey capability for perception surveys/concept testing
Topic commentary to solicit open comments on a series of key issues/themes
Project outlining capability to develop high level actions plans/implementations
Especially powerful in the ASL session is that all participants are active at the same time. The real-time electronic format allows for simultaneous input and the ability to actually see the input of the full group as it appears. The session is highly energizing for the participants and also creates a high level focus on the outcomes. As the participants begin to develop the key ideas, strategies, messages or concepts, they become very connected to the results which increases their overall buy-in to the process. Our professionals have conducted ASL sessions supporting strategic planning, marketing and communications strategy, employee input sessions, product development/requirements, and a broad set of focus group sessions on client product and positioning feedback.
The Advanced Strategy Center is designed to balance high tech and high talk. At times we may utilize the ASL technology and laptops for rapid input on issues and strategies, and perhaps prioritize those that matter the most. Then we would spend careful time to talk about those issues and ensure we have buy-in and understand any positive/negative implications on implementing the actions. Additionally, we have the ability to support electronic brainstorming in three distinct ways:
Our Advanced Strategy Lab hardware and software is integrated directly into the environment at our Center in Scottsdale. Participants are provided with a LAN connected laptop, and our expert facilitators manage the session, and produce formatted documents with complete results of the brainstorming, assessments and survey work that has been completed;
Additionally, we have mobile lab capability that allows us to take the Advanced Strategy Lab tools on the road. The lab can be shipped directly to any client or offsite planning location and set up in about an hour, complete with all laptops, server, LCD support and network cabling. By using a mobile lab environment, we can expand the number of participants in a session by increasing the number of laptops, or by allowing participants to share laptops in an approach we call conference style. Conference style allows us to support groups of 100 to 500 participants.
We can also can run the electronic tools over the Internet in an approach we call the Advanced Strategy Lab OnLine. Participants with a current browser can connect into a specified hosted website and have the same access and performance that we have in the face-to-face sessions. A simultaneous voice call is held, and a facilitator guides the process. It’s anyplace/anytime.
Finally, we have the ability to combine the best of all of our tools, and offer a blended session, consisting of a group of participants working from our center in Scottsdale, collaborating simultaneously with groups or individuals around the globe using the Advanced Strategy Lab Online.
Advanced Strategy Lab
Advanced Strategy centeR
Advanced Tools & Techniques for Organizational Change