Lean Coffee(tm) is a trademark of Modus Cooperandi
Lean Coffee is a structured, but agenda-less meeting. Participants gather, build an agenda, and begin talking. Conversations are directed and productive because the agenda for the meeting was democratically generated.
Purchase (or bring) several pads of sticky notes and sharpies (or other highly visible markers).
If there is a theme for the Lean Coffee, ensure this is communicated to the attendees prior to the event.
Setup the room in any configuration that you want. If your intent is whole group conversations, then a large circle of chairs (no tables) is good. If people will break into smaller groups – a series of tables and chairs in clusters works well.
Set up a whiteboard or flipchart for the personal Kanban. On the Kanban board should be three columns; To Do, Doing, Done.
Ask everyone to write topics or questions onto the post-it notes. There should only be one topic per card and there is no limit to the number of topics. After 2-5 minutes, ask each attendee to introduce their topic and add it to the Kanban board. If there are related topics, they can be clustered into a single card.
Once all topics are introduced, ask all participants to dot vote on the topics they want to discuss. Each attendee gets three votes which can be assigned to any card and any amount. Sort the cards in the To Do column by the number of votes they received.
Move the first card into the Doing column and start discussion. Set a timer for 5-10 minutes to timebox the discussion. When the timer goes off, ask the group to vote to continue the conversation (thumbs up) or move on (thumbs down). If the majority vote to move on, move the card to Done and move the next card to Doing.
Share photos of the event, photos of the Kanban board, and any takeaways or actions that were documented. Remember to invite them to join the Business Agility Institute.