If you’ve had any interactions with me over the last several years I’ve probably mentioned Liberating Structures to you. Liberating Structures are powerful activities and processes that you can use in meetings and learning events to include all voices in the room and collaborate together.
I not only have been using Liberating Structures in both my group process facilitation and my workshop and course facilitation for several years, I’ve been facilitating immersion workshops for others to learn how to use Liberating Structures (more on an upcoming one at the end of this post) both in person and online. I also co-steward our local Liberating Structures User Group here on Vancouver Island, British Columbia.
Not only do I love Liberating Structures, I love the collaborative whiteboarding platform called Mural. And Mural happens to include templates for facilitating Liberating Structures right in their platform. This year I started revising those templates and using them to facilitate Liberating Structures activities in virtual spaces.
So far I’ve been able to use Mural templates for the following Liberating Structures (each linked to the description on the LS website):
Check out my Min Specs template here, it’s a revision of the one provided in Mural created by the consulting company Voltage Control. (Thanks Voltage Control!) Create one of these boards for each Min Specs group that you have. (So, for example, if you have a class of 24 and there are 4 people in each group, you’ll need six of the same boards.)
If you’re facilitating with a group that hasn’t used Mural before, I recommend that you send them a short tutorial in advance or set up a practice board for them to practice moving stickies around. If this isn’t possible, ask each group to choose the most Mural-savvy person in their group to be the scribe. Lock all the elements on the board except for the sticky notes so that participants don’t accidentally delete key pieces, such as the instructions for each step.
Incidentally, Mural isn’t the only platform that has LS templates; Miro has them too. I sort of fell into using Mural but I know people who swear by Miro. Whichever one you choose, they both have LS templates for you to take and modify for your purposes*.
Have questions about how I facilitate Liberating Structures virtually? Join me and my colleague Susana Guardado in the upcoming Royal Roads University Continuing Studies course, Facilitating Online with Liberating Structures, starting October 18.
*I haven’t received any payment for this post from any company mentioned within. I use Mural because I like it and it has worked for me.