The Agile Canvas, For Any Mood

Any time I'm invited to help groups collaborate, I use a simple, powerful model called the Agile Canvas. It has evolved over the past couple decades into a model that works in any kind of collaboration imaginable. The Agile Canvas keeps any group focused, realistic, aligned, inspired and productive throughout any collaboration. It's a canvas that captures our work in five unique conversations: questions, facts, principles, stories and sprints. The power of the canvas is how it links and leverages a diversity of perspectives and keeps everyone literally on the same page the whole time.  For more on the Canvas, visit

One of the many interesting features of the Canvas is that it immediately engages people in whatever mood they show up. The process honors the fact that, as much as we glamorize the rational side of being human, people act based on how they feel. Each of the five unique conversations leverages any mood people happen to be in.

When people feel curious or negative they contribute well to the Questions conversation.

When people feel informed or decisive they contribute well to the Facts conversation.

When people feel intentional or empathetic they contribute well to the Principles conversation.

When people feel inspired or passionate they contribute well to the Stories conversation.

When people feel committed or ready for action they contribute well to the Sprints conversation.

The many variations on emotional themes that show up in collaborations parallel these moods. People feel engaged because they don't have to pretend. They can be themselves and fully participate, engaging their passions and strengths in ways that builds relationships and supports the process.