Challenge the Assumptions Challenge the Assumptions is a creative tool designed to help people to step out of their ‘river of thinking’ and look at a challenge in a new way. There are two stages to the activity: challenging the assumption and idea generating around the result of this. What to do 1. Recap the challenge your group has been set and explain “We are going to list all the assumptions we have about this challenge, and all the rules and conventions around it, and then look at what we find to uncover new ideas. We will then record these on idea generating templates one at a time.” 2. Say “We should think about the way this is done, or the way we think about this challenge, at present”. Give the group an example of what you mean, ideally related to the challenge you are working on. 3. Write their responses in the ‘Challenge the Assumptions’ template. 4. Once you have 6-7 assumptions and rules, (at least one from each participant ideally), say “OK, looking at these assumptions, which of these do you think it would be interesting to challenge?” 5. Once the group has selected one, turn over your sheet and write the assumption in Challenge Box One. 6. Say “Now, how might we challenge this assumption or break this rule? What other potential ways of doing things might exist?” 7. Write down the responses that come in. If most of the responses seem like opposites to the challenge (e.g. the assumption is ‘we charge a day rate’, the challenge is ‘we work for free’) say “These are really great. Let’s keep going. What other ways can we challenge this assumption?” This is often when we start moving towards ideas that are worth exploring. 8. Once you have 4-5 challenges, say to the group “Great. We’ve got some brilliant challenges to this assumption. Now let’s work a couple of them up into ideas.” 9. If you heard the nugget of an idea emerging, play it back to the group. Ask the group how this might work and once they have outlined it verbally, record it on an idea generating template 10. Once you have worked up the idea, go back to the challenges to the first assumption and ask if there are any other ideas here. 11. If not, turn the sheet over and challenge the assumptions for another rule, repeating stages 6 to 10. 12. At the end of this activity, ask your group to select their best idea to share with the room. Give this one idea to the Super Facilitator and place your other completed ideas into your ‘Generated Ideas Envelope’.
Challenge the Assumptions Template Challenge the Assumptions What are all the assumptions or rules ? at Bills about the way we serve our customers? Discuss these in your group and write them all down here. Challenge the Assumptions Write four interesting assumptions or rules about service you discussed together in the boxes below and then, taking each one in turn, discuss ways that you could break or challenge this rule or assumption. This isn’t only about thinking about opposites, but also about different ways of doing the same thing or different attitudes or approaches. You’re not looking for fully formed ideas, just as many potential ways of breaking or challenging the rules and assumptions as you can think of. Assumption 1 Assumption 2 _____________________________ _____________________________ Assumption 3 Assumption 4 _____________________________ _____________________________ Once you have listed all of the assumptions, pick four that you think it would be interesting to explore together in more detail, turn over the page and write one in each box. Once you have challenged these four assumptions, look at what you have written and see what ideas this gives you about how we can elevate customer service in our restaurants?