Big things on walls- they’re key.

I’m sitting here with my feet propped up on a draft of a mural design about food security, and I’m thinking about the strategic planning process that I’ll be leading in a couple of days with a substance abuse coalition.  I’ll be leading the substance abuse group through a logic modeling exercise to define their desired outcomes for the next five years of their work, and we’ll think together about how to best get that work done. 

Although I won’t have it with me this week, the best logic modeling processes I’ve led have used a “sticky wall”, a piece of parachute material sprayed with move-able spray adhesive that lets you place and move pieces of paper on it.  There’s something really powerful about watching a group articulate its goals and strategies and seeing it come together before everyone’s eyes as a larger-than life map on the wall, complete with arrows and (if we’ve developed good enough outcome measures) signposts.  I think there’s something similar about muraling.  It’s big.  But it has a lot of information. You can walk up close and see something small.  Or you, and the whole group together, can walk far away and see the whole picture.