What does 20/20 mean
Get clarity around which projects or initiatives should have higher priority based on their perceived benefits.
👥 5 to 10 people | ⏰ between 30 and 90 minutes
This exercise is about getting group clarity around which projects or initiatives should be more of a priority than others. Because teams in the organization often divide their attention among multiple projects, it can be refreshing to refocus and realign with projects that have the biggest impact relative to cost and effort.
You must thoughtfully evaluate and rank projects as a group, which can be challenging when they all seem important. Defining this together helps ensure that the prioritization process is quality. The first phase of the game—describing and capturing the benefits—is significant because it lays the groundwork for the difficult part of determining priorities.
- To prepare, write any proposed project or initiative relevant to the players on sticky notes, one item per note. To start, it’s important that the initiatives you’ve written on the sticky notes are in random order. Shuffle them before the meeting starts—you can even blind-post —so that there is no implicit prioritization on your part.
- Introduce the game by explaining to the players that 20/20 Vision is about forced prioritization based on perceived benefits. Verbalize the importance of building consensus on priorities to move the organization forward.
- In a wall space visible to the players, post an initiative and ask the players to describe its benefits. Write their descriptions on a sticky note posted next to that initiative. If there’s disagreement around the benefits of an initiative, write down all of the points made. Assume there’s validity to multiple perspectives and let the group indicate the majority perspective through the ranking process. If the group has a shared sense of the benefits for each initiative, don’t spend much time clarifying them; move to prioritization and respond to questions around benefits as they come up.
- Repeat for all relevant projects or initiatives until the benefits have been thoroughly described, captured on stickies and posted.
- Ask the players if any initiatives are missing. If so, request that they write them down, post them, and discuss their benefits so that you can capture them.
- Move into a neighboring wall space, pull down two random initiatives and ask the players which is more or less important to the organization’s goals.
- Post the one that the group generally agrees is more important above the one they generally agree is less important.
- Move another initiative into the new space. Ask the players if it is more or less important than the two posted and post it accordingly—higher priorities at the top, lower priorities at the bottom.
- Repeat this process until all initiatives have been thoroughly discussed and prioritized.