The process typically involves lining the walls of a large room in brown paper (or any other paper type – as long as it is large), then capturing content by sticking notes to the paper which record peoples contribution based on their area of expertise. The notes can denote anything to do with the process that is under investigation; importance, size, effort, resources, documentation, opportunity for improvement, etc. There’s a good presentation here that very eloquently runs through the process and how it can deliver value.
I’m not going to argue for or against the merit of the approach – and there are many things out there that achieve a similar result. The process of going from analogue to digital has long been understood as a good way to enable people to quickly contribute to idea generation; long live the white board!
What I’d like to suggest is that the process for capturing the output of such sessions creates a massive amount of work (often for an individual) which more often than not results in content which, at best creates documentation that is rarely read, or at worst, gets filed as it is impossible to re-visit in context. The momentum built in the session quick fades away as the contributors head back to their day jobs, the facilitators heads off to their next engagement and ultimately, change or transformation is hard to stimulate.
LINQ is different. We’ve had customers succeed at moving from analogue to digital by capturing the outcome of the session using LINQ. Admittedly this focuses the capture on the information flow
associated with the discussion, through the Information Supply Chains enabling business outcomes, but this new way of viewing your business in terms of the cost of business in the current state, and the opportunity to be better, captured through a target state really does work.
By investing one more resource into the Brown Paper strategy session, capture of the discussion into LINQ can be done in real-time, providing an easy and comprehensive way of accessing the tremendous value created. Modelling using our methodology ensures that everyone can understand the outcome, that those outcomes are linked to business value and that the people impacted by the change are engaged from the outset.