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What is Strategy: Blanket Tool

Topic

Diversity & Anti-Oppression iconDiversity & Anti-OppressionMeeting Facilitation iconMeeting FacilitationOrganizing & Strategy iconOrganizing & StrategyTeam Building iconTeam Building

Language

English

Type

Training Tool
Goal
  • Give participants an experienced sense of goals versus tactics versus strategy.
Time

30 minutes or so (depending on the size of the group)

How to Lead

Want a quick tool to help your group get the difference between goals, tactics and strategy? Here’s a vivid example to help with some definitions!

Place a blanket on the floor. Have the group stand on the blanket (they should be only slightly packed on the blanket).

Then, give them the challenge: turn the blanket over (flip it over) without anyone stepping off the blanket. (So no leaving the blanket, leaning on walls, etc.) Some groups may take longer than others, allow the group to take as long as it takes. If the group steps off the blanket, or someone steps on the ground, start over again. It’s a very do-able task!

After the group completes the task successfully, help the group self-reflect. Since it’s a short exercise the debrief may be short, too. But make sure to give some space for an immediate reactions or feelings. Then focus the group on looking at the questions of: “What was the goal? Tactic? Strategy?”

In this case, the goal was given by the facilitator – flip the blanket over – the strategy was the method devised to achieve the goal and the tactics were the particular ways the group implemented the strategy.

Using any examples from the group’s life or in the world, help connect that set of definitions to the larger world. Allow the group to apply those definitions to their own work as needed.

Where This Tool Comes From

Training for Change learned this tool from trainer Nadine Bloch nbloch@igc.org based in Washington, DC USA

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