Wiebke Wetzel


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This is an exercise to use when the group gets stuck in details and struggles to see the big picture. Also good for defining a vision.



Get the group to
• focus on the essentials
• develop a vision




    If a group gets stuck in endless discussion of details or doesn't develop a vision, make them draft the first page of a fictional newspaper.

    1. First, they need to collect the potential stories at hand. Which are important enough to make it on the first page?

    2. Make them decide which story is the most important. This will be the lead article.

    For the rest of the exercise you may split the larger group into smaller teams for each article.

    3. Then they need to write headlines for each article.

    4. For the first paragraph they have to get right to the point. What is this all about? Why is it important? What are the consequences? If you are limited in time, Keywords and bullet points are sufficient.

    5. For the second paragraph they need to collect the important facts.

    6. They may actually design the whole page, if there is enough time. This will make them remember the things for longer.

    Tips for running this activity online

    • Pick an online whiteboard tool that allows you to use a large, zoomable canvas.
    • Set up a blank newspaper page for your participants as well as sections for the various articles and headlines. This is a great activity to work on collaboratively as its so visual - your group can see the front page come together in real time!
    • Invite participants to zoom in and visit each section during the review section of this exercise.
    • If you’re not using an online whiteboard, we’d recommend using a collaboration tool such as Google Docs to collect the information for each step under a separate heading. Invite everyone into the document to share their ideas but be very clear in regards to editing rights.
    • When facilitating group discussion, we’d recommend that participants use non-verbal means to indicate they’d like to speak. You can use tools like Zoom’s nonverbal feedback tools, a reaction emoji, or just have people put their hands up.The facilitator can then invite that person to talk.
    • During group work, use a video conferencing tool where you can assign the participants into breakout rooms (eg. Zoom).
    • When briefing the exercise and assigning the pairs or groups to work together, keep all participants in the main video conference room and explain best practices.
    • After this step is completed, turn on breakout rooms so each group can work on their tasks.
    • After the group breakout groups are completed and participants return to the main room, debrief the exercise.
    • If you do not have breakout sessions, keep everyone in the main room, though invite groups to communicate in private messages or small groups in Slack. 


    From Martin Wehrle, Die 50 kreativsten Coaching-Ideen. Das große Workbook für Einsteiger und Profis zur Entwicklung der eigenen Coaching-Fähigkeiten

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