Culture Tensions Canvas: Tensions Can Hold Us Together, Or Tear Us Appart
Don’t avoid tensions, embrace them.
The Culture Tensions Canvas will help you create a blueprint of the culture of a team, division, or organization. Capture existing tensions and identify how they affect performance. Uncover the different emotions, mindsets, and behavior and the positive and negative results they create.
This tool serves two purposes.
Firstly, it will help the team align on the current situation, what’s working and what’s not, what are the things that move everyone forward, and the ones that hinder productivity.
Secondly, it will help prioritize and resolve ongoing issues. You can use the Culture Experiment Canvas to start prototyping and testing possible solutions.
In short, the Culture Tensions Canvas will help you resolve tensions and move your team forward.
How to Use It?
The best way to use this Culture Tension Canvas is to work as a team. Considering that you want to integrate diverse perspectives, let individuals work on their own first, and then incorporate all thoughts into the canvas.
Give participants 10 minutes to capture their ideas on sticky notes. Then, one by one, they should read them out loud and add theirs to a large, shared canvas. It’s better to tackle one section at-a-time.
Once everyone is done, this will spark a conversation between the team. The facilitator should guide the group to cluster the different thoughts.
Toxic Behaviors: What individual and collective conducts are harming the team? What are the rituals or practices that go against the team values or goals? What behaviors should we call out or ‘punish’? Identify the conducts the team should stop doing.
Toxic Behaviors: What individual and collective conducts are driving positive results? What are the rituals or practices that help us live our values and achieve our goals? What behaviors should we encourage and reward? Identify the conducts the team should continue and/or start doing.
Negative Outcomes: Identify all negative results (business, team, and organizational related).
Positive Outcomes: Identify all positive results (business, team, and organizational related).