The 'Break Through' Five

One of the “Campers” last night at Camp Ketchum, my company’s learning boot camp, shared a revelation with me. In the compressed and sometimes tense 24 hours that she and her teammates had to digest, analyze, debate, strategize and ultimately craft a solution for an important client, she began to doubt the process I’d been partly responsible for teaching the day before.
The “Break Through” 5 — five steps my colleague Tera Miller and I recommended for getting from problem to solution quickly and intelligently — seemed logical in theory, but tricky in practice with a team of people with wildly different views and styles.
As this Camper explained it, there was an urge to just jump into tactics, while the process strongly argued for nailing a strategy first. Happily, the camper admitted, she grew to “trust the process,” and seemed grateful to have had it as a guide. So here it is:

The Break Through Five

  1. Objectives as Opportunities – We will target (whom) to help them understand/believe/or do (what)?

  2. Observations as Insights – Look at how people use and talk about the product to glean what’s interesting or significant.

  3. Options as Possibilities – Build off insights to generate many possible ways to meet objectives.

  4. One Idea – Choose one powerful, “break through” idea that meets success criteria.

  5. Outline – Name, frame and explain the main idea and supporting tactics in an organized, outlined format, preferably using visuals.

So next time the prospect of an all-nighter looms, try this out. Judging by the high caliber of the presentations I just watched, it really works.