Everything Needs Space to Grow

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  • 3 October 2013
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July is right around the corner. Here in Seattle, that means saying goodbye to the rain, hello to days with upwards of 16 hours of sun, and feeling an almost preternatural desire to get out of the office.

It is also one of the most crucial times of the year for management.


Whether you’re preparing to enter a new fiscal year or pausing to reflect upon the first half of 2014, both activities need the same thing: Space.

A space to lean-in and connect on a deeper level with your colleagues. A space to hit pause and step outside of the day-to-day grind to celebrate what worked and reflect upon what didn’t. A space to take a step back and look beyond what is and see what can be. Simply put, a space to get out of our own way.

Spaces like these are powerful means of simultaneously addressing EQ challenges (such as how might my team work more efficiently and collaboratively? or how might I be more mindful and happy at work?) and IQ challenges (such as how might I balance the tactics of today with the strategies to grow and evolve tomorrow?) regardless if you’re working in a large enterprise or an emerging start-up. The only differences involve constraints and complexity.


Although there are an infinite number of ways to create your own unique space, below are a few core attributes which must be considered/addressed.

1. The physical space itself: Onsite or offsite? Is it easily configurable? Is it big enough?
2. The audience: Are decision makers present? Are all stakeholders represented?
3. The agenda: Is there a mix of active and passive activities? Is the day cohesively structured?
4. The definition of success: What is the desired output? How will it be measured?


To maximize the impact of the space, there are two simple approaches to framing the discussion:

1. Use a human-centered lens

People engage with people, not programs or collateral. By framing discussions around people, there is a greater chance of successfully affecting change. This holds true whether the focus is at the individual- or team-level.

Focusing on Individuals

For people to operate autonomously and efficiently within a larger team or organization, understanding what position they’re playing is a prerequisite.

Revel recently hosted a workshop with a focus on helping participants define their individual value prop and the output was enlightening. Want to run one for your team? Use our workbook (or, better yet, let’s do it together). 

Focusing on Teams

Even if everyone is playing their position, no one lives in a vacuum. In our ever-accelerating, increasingly-interconnected world, how we collaborate matters.

To help you cut through the noise and take action, Revel curated the following 3 helpful summaries: Affecting Your Meeting EffectivenessTop 4 Collaboration Trends, and The Agile Imperative.

2. Tie back to the customer journey

Brainstorming is messy. Without a way to make sense of the chaos, it’s easy for the excitement created in the space to be more heat than light. A simple, yet powerful, way to categorize and prioritize ideas is to put them in the context of the customer journey from inspiration to advocacy.

Looking for inspiration when building your customer journey framework, borrow a sample customer journey framework to get you started.


If you’re interesting in learning more about creating a unique space for you and your team, let us know! Or, stop by the Revel office in-person to see our space at our upcoming Panel Discussion on Innovation and Creativity.


Contributed by Tim Bowman and Nick Buckley. 78% of US



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