With summer upon us, I think one thing:

Summer Camp.

And when I think of summer camp, I think of my most favorite thing of all:

Arts and crafts.

And when I am not working with nonprofits, I am painting with a glass of red wine nearby. I am all about visual creative expression to inspire and motivate.

A vision board or dream board  "is a collection of images pictures and affirmations of one's dreams and desires, designed to serve as a source of inspiration and motivation..."

   I mean, Oprah has a vision board and if Oprah has a vision board, should we even question it? 

    A vision board can be a great (and fun) way to cultivate a positive nonprofit team. Visual creative exercises can help organizations to think outside of the box and get the core of who they want to be. Of course, when you break out the glue sticks and markers, there might be a few among you will have "arts and crafts anxiety",  but I always say, "No one gets extra points for coloring in the lines. We're looking for the heart..."

  Here is how to conduct this fun experiment:

  1. Give every department or lead team member a white poster board. Provide some markers, scissors, glue, and old magazines (up-cylced from the the waiting room). 
  2. Give everyone about 2 hours to complete their vision board.
  3. Ask each department or lead team member to use this vision board to visually express: 2 goals they want to achieve as a department and 5 descriptions words they want to be known as. An example of this might be that the Marketing department wants to achieve the goals of getting 1000 new emails from the mailing list. Perhaps some of their "description words" would be: CREATIVE, EFFICIENT, FUN, COLLABORATIVE and CONSISTENT. 
  4. When everyone is finished creating their board,  invite everyone to a comfy space to eat pizza and show off their boards and maybe even have a good laugh. 


  Why do this?

      For starters, it fun... but most of all... sometimes we need to get those creative juices going to remind folks why they are here and what they want to achieve. It's also a great way for each department/lead team member top express their heart for the organization. This is exercise is lighthearted but its meant to uncover some important information. Sometimes the folks in events need to hear that the folks in finance have the same desire for the organization to flourish... 

    In the end, vision boarding can cultivate a positive and cohesive attitude among your nonprofit team... and isn't that what you want? It's every leader's desire to have their team better understand each other so that they can work well together.

  Although it's not necessary, I do feel strongly that ice cream should be served at the end of every vision boarding session. It's just a suggestion, but you'd be foolish to skip it.

Cheering for you always,