Phoenix Community Housing has residents as shareholding members and who play a central role in decision making. Having overcome a challenging time Phoenix had a lot to celebrate and wanted to continue to build on those successes with their strategy for the next 5 years. As part of their Staff Day they wanted to involve staff in exploring what Phoenix’s strategy could be. We designed a workshop, to fit within the rest of the afternoon’s activities, which employed some easily applied techniques of storytelling. Staff would learn more about each other and the benefits of what they do; to identify what could happen next to make Phoenix even more special and what its successes could be in 5-year’s time.
Despite the challenges of a small space we involved a much larger number of participants than expected in creating Future Success Stories for Phoenix Community Housing. Each group was hosted by a Phoenix staff member who had been trained to co-facilitate with us. The groups were set a strategy theme each and using a series of questions to prompt ideas the groups identified what they together felt was important to either improve or change. Within that theme and given their joint expertise what could they imagine being responsible for over 5 years. Using a narrative structure to build the detail of how their success story unfolded they also added in descriptions to create characters that made the story more real and applicable. Each group shared their story to another group and their stories were recorded and transcribed.
Each cohort, who has taken part in our Collaborative Story workshop, found that the humanising aspect of storytelling, allowed their solutions to be tangible and actionable, both in their own eyes and in that of their audiences. By considering the many different perspectives of individuals and organisations involved, unexpected insights were revealed which helped them tell their story engagingly and with awareness for the ramifications of each solution.
“A big thank you to Josh and Lily for a great event and for pulling it together so quickly and giving us the skills to be able to craft and tell our future story. We are pulling together the stories created on the day, into a storybook to launch our innovation related staff schemes.”
Director of People Services and Communications, Phoenix Community Housing