Download of the Virtual Collaboration Deck . A pdf containing nine double-sided printable cards, for you to use to facilitate virtual meetings and ease communication.
The following is Corrado’s post – originally published on LinkedIn which explains more about it.
The Virtual Collaboration Deck is a deck of 9 double sided cards that could facilitate virtual meetings and create easy communication protocol across all participants.
I don’t want to enter here in the discussion about non-verbal communication, its percentages in people common interaction (30,40,60%…) and how this has been impacted by the current situation where everyone is working alone, only virtually connected with others. It is however out of any doubt that non-verbal communication is really hard to reproduce in pure virtual environments and we, as human, miss this a lot.
That’s why I was exploring different ways to activate it within teams. Cards immediately appeared as a good idea and also as a perfect example of gamification (yes, this is not serious gaming). Moreover cards can provide one more reason to activate video connection and a fun way interact with the meeting participants without interrupting too abruptly the flow of the conversation. During in person meetings there are plenty of these situation (one for all? nodding with your head when you agree).
The best example of such a deck I have found on the market is the “Supercards” deck from Lisette Sutherland’s “Collaboration Superpowers” (link) that I strongly suggest to experiment.
The usage of these cards is pretty easy: take the card related to something you want to communicate to the speaker or to the participants and show it on the camera (obviously turned on). Immediately your message is delivered across the meeting without interrupting the speaker. The “raise hand” option in MS-Teams has exactly the same usage, but with these cards you more options.
I’ve used this deck for months (ask my team mates!) and I have identified some different situations/ideas to create my own deck. Here is when the experience as a game designer can be helpful, becasue I designed this deck following the same approach I use for games.
Below the attributes of the CVD deck:
- A deck easy to transfer and print (ideally a 1 page PDF < 1MB)
- Black and white cards (not grey-scale or coloured) to maximise visibility also using awful laptop cameras
- Standard icons, but also a short description in case of different cultures
- Standard paper should be used to minimise reflex
- A Low Ink version easy to Print and Play at home with cheap printers
- Be sure what was the card showing, so need a recall on the back of each card
- Want to optimise the usage of the single page, so moved to a double sided card solution
- Card and recall should avoid confusion (particularly critical in double sided cards)
Here, as example, one of the 9 cards
As you can see the card is upside-down to be clearly used front-back (even if in this configuration there is no back or front). This solution seems to be very effective to be used in other games too. You can find all above attributes too.
This version of the deck collect the following collaboration cards.
- You are on mute; Mute yourself please
- Cannot hear you; Your voice is disturbed
- I like this; I don’t like this
- Awesome; Hello everyone
- Cannot see the screen; You look frozen
- Hear some background noise; Thank you
- Need a break; Must drop off
- I’ve something to say or ask; Ok for me
- ELMO (Enough Let’s Move On); Slow down pls
If you like the idea, you can download the deck (link here), use it and provide your feedback in the comments below.
To print them, do a double sided print in portrait mode, flipping on the long edge.
I hope this could help you and your team to move to a better level of collaboration.
NOTE: If you are asking yourself “Why CVD and not VCD?” It is because of the logo. 😉
Corrado De Sanctis is an Agile Coach and has been involved in some of the largest enterprise transformations at international level in different industries. A Project Manager with almost 20 years of experience, he has been promoting Agile since 2012 and has different certifications at team and enterprise level. Corrado is a well-known member of the Agile community in London where he manages the Lean, Agile Delivery and Coaching Network and Digital Transformation in London meetup groups (+2500 members) and he is a speaker on Agile topics. In his “short” free time, he practices triathlon.