The office as we know it has changed severely in the past months. Remote working is here to stay.
Obviously this also has had an impact on the use of visual management and Obeya’s.
We see organizations replicating their physical Obeyas in digital tooling such as Mural or MIRO.
Or we see companies starting out with Obeya digitally from point zero, without ever having had the full blown experience of a physical Obeya.
So what are best practices in setting up a digital Obeya? And what are the pros and cons when it comes down to pick the tool of your choice?
Some of our experiences thus far:
Some upsides of digital Obeya:
+ A digital Obeya really speeds up starting to work with Obeya. No more hussle in finding the right room or walls in the office to claim as the Obeya. No more printjobs and putting paper on a wall. Anyone can join anytime. So all of this makes it really easy to start working with Obeya quickly.
+ We have had multiple teams working simultaneously on the same wall, that would have been a real challenge had we tried this physically in one room!
+ It is much more easy and fast to design and redesign your walls in a digital environment than in the physical world. Our AgileWalls concept consists of Wall elements (0,5meter x 0,5 meter printed mini-whiteboards) our customers can combine as ‘lego building blocks’ to design and build their own (physical) Obeya. Now with the use of Mural or MIRO tooling, our clients can really easily design their own Obeya using our Wall Elements in their digital tool of choice and start using it right away. From there they keep on interating and improving. Once the design of the Obeya is satisfactory, it is really easy to convert the digital Obeya into a physical Obeya.
Some downsides of digital Obeya:
– No matter the quality of the visuals in your Obeya, the real magic of Obeya lies in the exchange of information through real face to face conversations. Using digital tooling we miss a lot of the non-verbal communication through body-language, which takes up to 55% of all communication. In my personal experience; sometimes real conversations and people are reduced to ‘voices in my ear’ while I am focussing on something else on my screen. Behaviour I would never show in a face-to-face situation!
– Inifinity whiteboards are awesome…however I also miss the choices we are forced to make when we have to take the physical restrictions of Wall space into account. I have seen digital Obeya’s that are so packed with milestones, metrics, data and information that I am totally lost and miss seeing the big picture that I am used to see in a physical Obeya.
I am curious to learn from your experiences!
And if you would like to have access or a demo in our Digital Obeya in Mural, be sure to leave me a message!
This is my biggest challenge at this moment. Now that the Netherlands is going back to a stricter lockdown, our plans for a physical obeya are on hold and we will start digitally.
I would love some additional insights on top of those of bart, which I will share with my team and keep in mind preparing the kick off session.
Also some additional templates or examples are very welcome. I’m thinking that those of the training will be a better place to start from than for example the AgileWalls one I’ve seen (that one is a bit different and less suited to host some of our ideas).
Will report back with experiences and more specific questions and roadblocks soon!