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Having Positive Intent & Being Empowered

Last week, with 24 hours' notice, I was invited to facilitate a 45-minute session for 80 to 100 people online.

The objective was to empower people within teams, ultimately leading to a more rewarding environment.

The session was co-designed with a leader of the teams; we reviewed many of my visuals and agreed on ten that linked their themes with some provocation, research and suggested actions!


Perspectives differ, and when teams are empowered, having empathy for colleagues is critical. A visual shared early in the session (seen in the video) encouraged people to step back and consider somebody's perspective. Imagine a light shining on and through this cylinder below. The walls are like perspectives. If you look at a single wall (someone's perspective), you may see a circle or square; however, when you step back, you know it is a cylinder. This visual always has people stop and think, opening their minds.


Google's Project Aristotle established five vital elements within their most effective teams. Many are obvious: the Impact and Meaning of the work and having Structure for Clarity of roles. The final two require ongoing interactions within the team and across an organisation being; Dependability - completing things to expectations or standards. The other is Psychological Safety – taking risks and being vulnerable. These interactions require ongoing feedback.

Actions Understanding perspectives and talking about the work requires open and constructive dialogue when colleagues can engage in what matters. There are three simple questions: when made a habit of by all colleagues, outcomes are accelerated;

  • What is going well?

  • What could be better?

  • What is being left unsaid?

In facilitating thousands of people in workshops, I have found that simple drawings that link concepts and a call to action bring tremendous value to organisations.

Two of the above visuals are in my upcoming book Making Life Happen, along with thirty more simple drawings similar to these.

Inspired from my writing in Finding A Better Way.


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