I’m a very methodical thinker. I like order to things. I like to see a clear start and a clear finish.
Yesterday, I found myself pulling out the sticky notes with two different clients to help them think about a project.
The first client needed to map out a process for managing volunteers, from recruiting all the way through to the exit interview. The second one wanted to visualize the content for their new website. For both, I wanted to help them first create a process to give the projects structure.
Both clients had been wrestling with these projects, mostly I think because they simply hadn’t set aside time to work on them. After just an hour, each client had a visual structure on sticky-notes and knew what their next steps were.
The next time you need to do some big thinking, especially creating a fundraising plan, I recommend you get out some colorful sticky notes and a marker.
Start with some broad thoughts like “what are the main steps in this process?” Write each one down on its own sticky. You can use a blank wall or the back of a door to put the notes in order. (I like using sticky notes because you can move them around if you need to.) Don’t worry about all the details yet – just get the main pieces first. You’ll go back later and fill in the details.
For the website, we started with “who will be visiting the website?” and “what will they want to know?” This helped us decide on the information to include and by using the sticky notes, we were easily able to figure out how to organize the information for each type of visitor.
Have you used this type of exercise before to help you get your thoughts together? Do share! We’d all benefit from your experience.