Perhaps it’s the Minecraft effect, but playing with blocks is very much in vogue again, both at home and in the office brainstorming session. Lego has a near-universal appeal, and not just the high-value Star Wars Imperial Star Destroyer or Marvel Avengers sets. Any bucket of the brightly-colored bricks can inspire, drive creativity and help make people productive. No wonder the company is the most successful toy maker on the planet.
The key selling point behind Lego in the office is that anyone can use it. While some may play guitar to get their creative juices flowing, draw intricate doodles, hit the gym or go for a primal scream in the basement, absolutely everyone can build with Lego. Be it a wobbly tower, beach scene, prototype gizmo or conceptualization of the business hierarchy – the act of building with their hands helps get people’s brains thinking, transcribing abstract thoughts into 3D shapes and creating a visible result that others can understand.
Release Stress With Lego
Lego is the perfect medium for any office because it is a low-cost booster, it adds fun to a task and can help aid storytelling or describing problems. Creativity can be a struggle for many, add to the pressure of a looming deadline and send clear thought right out the window. Using Lego can deflect a lot of the pressure and move the brain back to a more playful state. Creating a tangible model helps people think about problem solving, perhaps even unconsciously, and Lego itself is far more stimulating than a PowerPoint presentation or a spreadsheet.
There’s so much interest in how Lego can help develop skills, the company has opened schools that will equip the next generations to be fully-fledged Lego-thinkers. So, if driving innovation, continuous improvement and creativity is good enough for Danish school children, it should be an easy sell for any office. While many adults might just be starting to stretch their Lego-inspired creativity, it should be easy to see results as people start to think outside the brick box. It can help develop clear trains of thought and allow people to come up with ideas where previously there was only a brick wall.
As demonstrated in this Lego Serious Play video, it’s easy to see how Lego can help provide answers to questions like, ‘how do we function, who’s a team player, what are our strengths or key challenges?‘ Naturally, individual office circumstances and questions will vary, but using a collection of Lego bricks and figures, teams can take the heat out of personal evaluations, look at business issues from a new perspective and encourage further discussion and experimentation.
Increase Engagement with Lego
Blocks aren’t only being used in schools to encourage development: the University of Cambridge recently hired a Professor of Lego to look into how development can be encouraged through the use of blocks and play. The skills discovered by these researchers are transferable or analogous from kids to adults, from the play group to the office huddle room, with hierarchy, a desire to master and improved social play all prevalent traits when building blocks are involved.
The company even has its own for-business products under the Serious Play label. The range mixes both materials and methodology instructions, helping teams find the best ideas, results or answers. Ideal scenarios in which it can be used are when usual methods fail to inspire. It can help when it comes to solving complex problems, finding who in a team can shine when it comes to non-standard approaches, increasing engagement among a company and allowing quiet voices to come through.
Problem Solve With Lego
Whatever the business problem, using Lego, or similar tools can break down tension in a meeting room. They can help people come up with unusual solutions to intractable problems and discover their inner creativity. While some people may consider Lego childish, there’s a whole generation who still love it and can’t wait to get their hands on it.
Adding it to the equation, Lego can help when it comes to problem solving and looking for business answers. Designers and creatives love to play with the stuff and help solve their problems. However, Lego can be applied to any office and many situations, that would usually end in everyone but the usual bright-spark suspects cleaning their fingernails and staring out the windows.
More than a mere childish plaything, Lego truly is a one-size-fits-all solution to the inevitable productivity rut. Indeed, Lego’s more advanced kits are even helping solve real world problems.
So why not try it for your next meeting? You may be surprised at the inspiration, creativity and productive groupthink Lego can foster.