Innovation & Change™ | Change Management Training Activity

**FOR USE IN VIRTUAL & FACE-TO-FACE TRAINING SESSIONS** Engaging, interactive focus where teams have the opportunity to think innovatively about a real business.

Learning Objectives

  • Thinking innovatively and having a positive attitude to change
  • Practising innovative thinking with a 'real' a situation
  • Seeing the benefits of innovative thinking and positive outcomes of change
  • Applying innovative thinking to performance improvement
  • Increased confidence in looking for ways to improve

Five-Year Repeat Use Licence

This Northgate training activity comes with a five-year licence for repeat use with up to 24 participants per training session within the licence-holding organisation. Please ask for a discount on multiple licences to use with larger groups. Also includes access to the Northgate Trainerhub (see below for details).

  • Participants

    3-24 (up to 4 teams of 3-6 people)

  • Timing

    1 hour + debrief

  • Uses a computer?

    Not required

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  • UK delivery

    (normally next working day)


  • Europe delivery

    (1-2 working days)


  • World delivery

    (1-5 working days)



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The Activity

Teams examine basic details of a (real) sandwich shop based in a tourist city. They receive photographs giving lots of clues about the business (so the information is not all data-based). Later teams are issued with more clues in the form of a questionnaire that was completed by the current business owner.

Based on their analysis of all the information, teams are asked to propose a set of realistic, changes that in their view would improve the business. They then work on a short presentation, listing the innovations they would like to see. The team presentations are then discussed and evaluated.

What issues do teams flag up? All the likely suggestions are listed in the Trainer’s Notes - but it is not definitive. Participants will have their own, innovative ideas. This leads to a general discussion on innovation and change. Finally a second set of photographs is issued, showing what really happened when changes were made by a new owner. The changes are interesting and did work - profits went up! How many of the teams' ideas matched those that were put into practice by the new owner? How good were teams at deciding what could be changed for the better?

Attention now turns to participants’ own situations. It’s easy to see problems in others and say where change is needed, but can teams identify shortcomings in their own environment, practices and procedures - and performance? The aim is to generate ideas that will improve performance back at work, based on the approach they adopted with the sandwich shop.

Trainer's Role

  • Introduce the activity and issue Team Briefs and a set of photographs (The Sandwich Shop)
  • Allow teams to study the materials, come up with their ideas and prepare a convincing presentation. After an allotted time, issue Questionnaire results if teams have not already asked for it.
  • Hear team presentations and discuss. Points listed in the Trainer’s notes should be covered. Note how much or how little teams want to change, what innovative ideas they put forward, how good their ideas are, how reasonable their findings are.
  • Issue the AFTER set of photographs (Cham Deli) to show what really happened. Summarise the issues that are raised.
  • Move on from the sandwich shop to participants’ own organisation and situations. Can they identify areas that need change and innovation in order to improve their performance?
  • Issue a copy of the Action Plan and allow time for teams to complete - then discuss.
  • Issue the Key Points handout for each person to discuss and/or take with them to serve as a reminder.

Full guidance is provided in the Trainer's Notes.

Pack Contents

  • Trainer’s Notes
  • Team Briefs
  • Photographs - before
  • Photographs - after
  • Handout 1: Questionnaire Results
  • Handout 2: Key Points
  • Handout 3: Action Plan

This activity is supplied as a hard copy pack for face-to-face classroom use and as a set of digital files for virtual classroom use (the digital files are supplied via the Northgate Trainerhub).

Northgate Trainerhub

Benefits of the online Northgate Trainerhub include:

  • Easy-to-access resource library which stores all the digital files for the activity in one place
  • Immediate access to upgrades made to the activity over the five-year licence term
  • Access to an online Trainer Forum where you can post questions, share experiences & network with other Trainers
  • Access to free activities and icebreakers
  • Option to send information to team leaders digitally via the hub using Team Access Codes
  • Unlimited Trainer logins for all Trainers based at the licence-holding site

We have found Northgate Activities to be well designed and the instructions are very comprehensive which makes it easy for the tutor to use "out of the box".

B. Illsley & H. Goodchild, Magnet Group

'Innovation and Change' has an exciting format - very easy to use. Excellent feedback from delegates who liked the simplicity of the activity.

Anon, Consultant

'Innovation & Change' worked very well - and using three sets worked with 56 participants easily.

Bob Hayward, Managing Director, Be More Effective Ltd

Northgate’s customer service is excellent – they are professional, helpful, friendly and responsive and always on hand to answer any questions. And we love using Northgate activities in our training courses!

Karen Canavan, Organisational Learning & Development Manager, Birmingham City University

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