This workshop method delivers efficient results for your marketing strategy
The Eigenland workshop method helps boost your marketing and corporate strategy. Here’s all you need to know about how it works as well as its advantages, process and costs.
You probably know from your everyday business (just like we do) that strategy workshops are strenuous for everyone involved. You simply want to get them over with. And you’re totally exhausted afterwards. But believe it or not, there’s a workshop method that’s completely different – and is also efficient.
The goal of a good strategy workshop is for everyone involved to create a result that can be used as the foundation for future action. Sometimes a workshop helps participants share knowledge, too. But often it sticks rigidly to the sequence of topics to be dealt with and forces everyone to plod through every item on the list (yawn). Different views, levels of knowledge and objectives among the participants mean that workshops are frequently an energy-sapping tool in everyday business. We all realize that workshops are necessary and have benefits, but do they always have to be held the way they are, or leave every participant so worn out? The answer is: NO! We’ve found a method that makes workshops child’s play and also gets very good results. It’s called “Eigenland.” TMC has been certified to hold Eigenland workshops since the beginning of 2018 and has staged a number of them since then.
Just what is Eigenland?
Eigenland has several special features. Let’s start with its basic structure. It’s based on theses. Yes, you read that right: Whatever topic you wish to deal with is split into six categories, each of which is assigned multiple theses. Of course, the latter have to be formulated before the workshop, but that makes it easier to stage later. The first step is that the participants say whether and to what extent they agree with the individual theses.
That is where things get playful in the Eigenland workshops: As in a conventional board game, participants play on an “island” on the table. Each player receives tokens in five colors, denoting the extent to which they agree or disagree with the theses:
Black token (tar) = I disagree completely
White token (nacre) = I tend to disagree
Blue token (crystal) = I’m undecided
Green token (gemstone) = I tend to agree
Yellow token (gold) = I completely agree
Voting is conducted anonymously and very quickly: At the words “ready, get set, go!” everyone drops a token on a spot in the middle of the island. This method ensures that your “intuitive knowledge” plays a part in your assessment. Since no one can see directly what token you have dropped, your response will be more honest than if you had to justify your decision to your colleagues and supervisors. That means Eigenland helps produce particularly honest results.
The result of the vote is then discussed in the second stage. The workshop’s own software enables the moderator to see at a glance which theses generate particularly conflicting opinions, great unanimity or a negative consensus. Eigenland therefore reveals very quickly and easily what topics are truly controversial and worth discussing instead of allowing people to spend hours “in the dark” unnecessarily.
What situations is Eigenland suitable for?
Eigenland is a good means to an end wherever a company, club or other institution has to make a strategic decision. However, the workshops can also help create a snapshot of the current situation at a company or in a group. We at TMC use the Eigenland method mainly in corporate communication, marketing and corporate development. Here are some examples of Eigenland workshops we’ve already held:
: Global marketing strategy of a tire manufacturer
: Future of internal communication in retailing (with industry representatives)
: Corporate strategy and succession at a consulting firm
: Integration of a newly acquired subsidiary
: Vision and strategy of a professional association
Other typical topics include:
: Company digitalization
: Internal management and value culture
: Company and association mergers
: Customer orientation
: Brand integration
We’ve already used Eigenland for ourselves, too – in order to define TMC GmbH’s corporate strategy and document the current mood in the team. However, the topics that can be addressed with Eigenland are almost unlimited. I could well imagine staging workshops on the subjects of product development, optimizing collaboration between departments/country branches, or taking stock of a company’s success potential.
Eigenland workshops last half a day or a whole day, depending on the task and subject area. It’s very rare for them to move faster or take longer. Another interesting aspect is that the method can be scaled: The maximum number of participants is 10 to 12 per island, but it’s also no problem if you want more people to take part in the workshop. In that case, we create multiple islands. The same theses are dealt with at all the islands and the results are aggregated. And speaking of results …
What results does an Eigenland workshop deliver?
You want to know what benefits you can expect? That’s a legitimate question. First, you’ll learn something about the opinions and viewpoints of your employees in the workshop. You’ll discuss various topics controversially and in particular identify areas where action may be needed – all in a very short space of time. You’ll also receive all the analyses of each question (anonymized, of course). And we’ve made it a habit to record the results of the subsequent discussion during the workshop so that we can provide them in the form of a summary.
Yet there’s another advantage to booking an Eigenland workshop with TMC: The system is a unique means of revealing opinions on the topic in question and stimulating a discussion on it. There are no concrete recommendations on what action to take afterwards, because otherwise the method would not be so versatile, but as a marketing agency, we can close that gap: parallel to the workshop, TMC’s consulting team develops a set of possible actions for additional added value.
Apart from the playful aspect, what makes Eigenland so special?
I’ve attended several Eigenland workshops, sometimes as a participant and sometimes as a minute-taker. Every time, I’m surprised at how quickly participants become engaged in a deep discussion. You could also say that Eigenland workshops are very efficient because they eliminate customary approaches to identifying opinions.
Another advantage of this playful approach is that participants aren’t exhausted afterwards. All the other forms of workshop I know usually mean I need a lengthy time to recuperate afterward – and first have to digest everything I heard. That’s a feeling I’ve never had after an Eigenland workshop. I’ve never felt worn out, and my head is clear even after eight hours of intense discussion. That might sound like a rather nice side effect at first sight, but if you look closer, it’s a key advantage of Eigenland. After all, in normal workshops participants’ concentration drops at some point and their level of engagement declines. This can have the effect, especially toward the end, that everyone tries to handle the remaining tasks as quickly as possible just to be done, and this frequently leads to inaccurate results. However, you’ll be highly focused from start to finish in an Eigenland workshop, simply because this method does not wear you out.
How much does an Eigenland workshop cost?
If I were you, by now I’d like to know how much I have to spend for an Eigenland workshop. The question is understandable. A workshop requires a large amount of project-specific work, so it’s almost impossible to offer a rule of thumb. However, to give you a rough guide and a feeling for the thing, I’ll simply explain the time required for a workshop – I hope that’s all right.
Eigenland workshops have different lengths and address precisely the topic you’re currently tackling. That means we first conduct a preliminary talk and use it as a basis for developing theses. That takes 0.5 to 2 days. We then stage the workshop, which lasts 0.5 to 1 day. After that, we process the results and formulate recommendations, for which we likewise need 0.5 to 1 day. Any travel expenses are added to that.
Does the Eigenland method interest you? Do you need to tackle a pressing strategic issue? Then let’s talk!