the zoo game

Exploring Cross-Team Collaboration with The Agile Animalia Megagame

collaboration, experiments

Last week we collaborated with AWA Global and Discover Financial Services to run an in-person Meetup in London. We introduced Agile Animalia (AKA the zoo game), which is a real-time collaborative mega game, that explores cross-team collaboration.

Summary of the game

Participants begin in teams, with the collective goal of creating a successful paper zoo. At the start of the game, each team is told that they are responsible for a particular task (e.g. acquiring animals, education, perimeters, safety, etc). As the game progresses and the zoo grows over a series or rounds (or iterations), participants have to figure out for themselves how best to work together in order to build a successful zoo with happy animals, staff and customers.

What did we learn from Agile Animalia?

  • Transformation is NOT easy
  • Change can make people deeply uncomfortable at first

    AND…
  • Humans are incredibly good at problem solving
  • When we work together, our problem-solving ability improves exponentially
  • This is especially true with complex problems, where the outcome cannot be predicted
  • Working together to adapt to change and solve problems can be exciting, fun and rewarding!

The Agile Animalia collaborative megagame was the perfect way to illustrate how the Enterprise Change Pattern (our coaching strategy for organisational change) can be used to increase ownership, reduce risk, and result in a perfect fit of change to context. In addition to running the game, Carl Rogers shared with us his experience of using the Enterprise Change Pattern with great success at Discover, where he is a senior manager in the Agile Enablement team.

Request a copy of Agile Animalia (the zoo game)

I would like to download the zoo game (Agile Animalia)(Required)
I would like to stay in touch with Bryter Work(Required)

Want more?

Let’s talk! We can run a workshop like this in your organisation. Agile Animalia (the zoo game) is a great way to make sure that everyone gets a say and feels excited and motivated by your transformation (rather than anxious and uncomfortable). It also illustrates how collaborative change leads to successful outcomes.
Not to boast, but our game score went from 11.75 points in the first iteration, to a whopping 70 in the final round. That’s a 495% improvement!

Why experiments matter

Why experiments matter (and are essential to your organisation’s future success)

approach, experiments

As a leader, you know that change is inevitable in the ever-evolving business landscape. To stay ahead of the competition, organisations must continuously innovate, experiment and adapt to changing market dynamics. Companies must be willing to adapt and evolve, constantly testing and iterating to stay ahead of the curve. This is why experiments matter. By conducting experiments, companies can explore new ideas, identify opportunities, and uncover areas for improvement. This allows them to stay nimble and responsive to changing market conditions, and to take advantage of emerging trends and technologies.
Experiments are essential to the future success of any organisation.

Why experiments matter

How to approach experiments

Firstly, experimentation is not just about trying out new ideas. It’s about validating (or invalidating!) assumptions and learning from failures. Embracing experimentation requires a shift in mindset and culture, moving away from traditional hierarchical structures towards a more people first culture.

Our recommended approach for making change in your organisation is the Enterprise Change Pattern. This tried and tested method involves experiment ‘change cycles’ with the following key steps:

– Start with now
– Define the experiment
– Make the change
– Measure the impact
– Repeat

Use this free canvas to start creating your experiments

At each stage, leaders must involve and engage their teams and communicate effectively. Everyone is involved and able to share their hidden knowledge. In this way, an organisation can make group decisions quickly.

By employing the Enterprise Change Pattern, with our help, you can ensure that experiments are well-designed, carefully executed, and rigorously evaluated.

Organisations that prioritise experimentation have been shown to have higher rates of innovation, better decision-making, and increased revenue growth. However, as a leader, you recognise that experimentation involves risk. Using the Enterprise Change Pattern helps to control that risk.

Building a culture of experimentation

Of course, it’s not just about the process of experimentation. A people-first culture is also essential to the success of any experiment. Leaders must empower their teams, encourage diversity of thought, and foster a safe environment for risk-taking and learning. Your team must feel safe to fail, knowing that mistakes are opportunities for learning and growth. And you must give them the resources and support they need to carry out their experiments effectively.

Transformational leaders must lead by example and create an environment that rewards curiosity, experimentation, and learning.

“To successfully innovate, companies need to make experimentation an integral part of everyday life—even when budgets are tight. That means creating an environment where employees’ curiosity is nurtured, data trumps opinion, anyone (not just people in R&D) can conduct or commission a test, all experiments are done ethically, and managers embrace a new model of leadership.”

Harvard Business Review

Ultimately, experiments are essential to your organisation’s future success. They are a powerful tool for driving innovation, improving performance, and staying ahead of the competition. By embracing the Enterprise Change Pattern and fostering a people-first organisation, leaders can create a culture of experimentation that drives innovation and growth. Remember, experimentation is not just about trying out new ideas. It’s also about validating assumptions and learning from failures.

We can help you to design and measure experiments using the Enterprise Change Pattern, especially if you would like to run multiple parallel experiments. Ask us how.