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Participation Level Activity: Clarify the Participation Level and Engage Your Workshop Participants Effectively

participation level (color coded) in a lean inception agenda

The Participation Level activity is a simple yet effective way to gather participant information and determine their level of involvement in a session or workshop. This activity not only helps in understanding who will participate but also sets a lively tone for introductions.


  1. Clarify the Post-It Colors. Begin by explaining that each color of the post-it notes corresponds to a different level of participation. For example, you might use one color for morning, another for afternoon, and another one for full-day participation.
  2. Write Name and Role. Ask each participant to write their name and role on the post-it note that matches their level of participation.
  3. Fun Introductions. To add an enjoyable element, encourage each participant to introduce themselves beyond their name and role. They could share a fun fact, such as their favorite dish or summer vacation spot. This not only breaks the ice but also makes the introductions more engaging.

The “Participation Level” activity is a simple yet effective tool for collecting participant information and gauging their involvement in a workshop or session. By utilizing color-coded post-it notes and encouraging interactive introductions, this activity not only enhances understanding but also infuses energy and engagement into the group. Whether you’re organizing an nception or any collaborative session, this activity sets a vibrant tone and fosters a sense of active participation among attendees.

Below is an example of running this activity as part of a kick-off for a Lean Inception. In a Lean Inception workshop, participants fall into two categories: stakeholders (who participate only in the kick-off and showcase) and active team members (who participate in all sessions). It’s important to note that the colors representing participation levels should align with the activity’s colors on the agenda.

participation level (color coded) in a lean inception agenda

participation level (color coded) in a lean inception agenda


This post is part of a series of posts on inception related activities.


Paulo Caroli

Paulo Caroli is the author of the best-selling book “Lean Inception: How to Align People and Build the Right Product” (the first on a series of books on business agility). He's also the creator of FunRetrospectives.com , a site and book about retrospectives, futurospectives and team building activities. Caroli writes on this blog frequently. Receive the next post in your email. Sign up here.
Build the MVP Canvas

Build the MVP Canvas

In the ‘Build the MVP Canvas’ activity, you’ll explore a dynamic tool inspired by lean startup principles—the Minimum Viable Product (MVP) Canvas. This visual chart empowers you to validate and refine product ideas systematically. It guides you through defining the MVP’s proposal, personas, journeys, features, metrics, and schedule. Step by step, you’ll understand each block, fill it with relevant information, and ensure alignment. Whether concluding a Lean Inception workshop or standalone, the MVP Canvas bridges ideas to action, turning concepts into customer-centric products.

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