Creative techniques help us in business to break our habitual thinking patterns. Especially when it comes to developing new ideas, for example, for customer acquisition, we often remain stuck in our usual thinking structures. Finding new approaches is very difficult if we do not abandon familiar paths. In our series, we introduce the Walt Disney method, another creative method that can help you as a leader in your work.
The Walt Disney Method
The Walt Disney method looks at a problem from different angles. But you slip into different roles – the dreamer, the realist and the critic. Each of us has played all three roles consciously or unconsciously: The dreamer is allowed to spin around and develop crazy ideas. The realist, on the other hand, thinks about how he can realize these ideas. The critic reviews them and points out possible risks. If you are facing a problem, need solutions or new ideas, this method is just right for you.
What do you need?
The most successful method is when five to six people get together. If there is enough space, each roll can have its own room. If this is not possible, also different corners in one room will work or simply three chairs, on which the participants sit alternately. For all possibilities, it is of advantage if the places are equipped accordingly: The dreamer could get a colorful, playful environment, for example, balloons or cloths. The space of the realist should be kept sober and the critic’s might be equipped with a judge’s robe or other details. Anyone who can prepare well may be creative here. Because the environment supports the participants to really get involved in the role to play.
How does the method work?
At the beginning you, as the team leader, introduce the topic. The Walt Disney method is based on three different phases, which should each allow 20 minutes. In the first phase, the team gathers in the Dreamer Corner. Here, the previously discussed topic is considered from the perspective of the dreamer. It can be spun around. The crazier the better. All ideas are noted but not rated. Then you go together to the realist corner. Here the participants discuss what it would take to implement these ideas. Finally, the best ideas are questioned in the critics’ corner. What works and what does not? If there are still questions left to an idea, then it starts again from the beginning.
What does Walt Disney have to do with it?
Walt Disney has not invented this method, even though it is often claimed. It cannot be denied that the inventor of Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck was a very creative mind. Therefore, he served as an inspiration to US author and coach Robert B. Dilts. „In fact, there were three Walts: the Dreamer, the Realist, and the Miser,“ he wrote in his book „Strategy of Genius“ about Walt Disney. This is the basis for his division of the method into three phases.
Lateral thinking
So once you’re faced with the task of developing new strategies, try this method. It helps you to leave habitual thinking paths. Have fun!