Making Work Agreements Visual

Whenever doing work with another group or person, it is very important that everyone has agreement with what needs to be done and how it will be done.  Discussions happen between the parties and everyone seems to agree.  Then people go off and do the work and the next time the two parties meet there are odd looks and comments about that was not what the other person meant.

Recently, I wrote about the benefits of writing an A3 around problem solving.  When agreeing to what work will be done and who will do it, writing it down in an A3 format is very beneficial also.  The A3 can help foster a discussion about what was really meant.  Seeing the thoughts on paper in text or drawings makes it easier to communicate.

Another benefit I have found, is when there are disagreements and the thoughts are written on paper the focus seems to be on the content and not the person.  It doesn’t completely eliminate somebody wanting to attack a person and become defensive, but it does help to reduce the likely hood of this happening.

The more people can communicate verbally using a written format, such as an A3, to enhance the discussion the easier it will be for people to agree on what needs to be done and how it will be done.  And the next time the groups meet, the better chance of their being no misunderstanding as to the work that was done.

Posted on February 20, 2012, in Communication, Tools and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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