The Puzzler Company specializes in creating/facilitating custom-designed PROBLEM-SOLVING GAMES and workshops. Events typically span one day to one week, though shorter durations are possible. While each offering is different, popular frameworks are described below.
Click HERE to explore a sampling of recent programs.
The GAME of Problem-Solving
Learn about design thinking, collaboration strategies, and the art of innovation through a problem-solving GAME. This through-composed event, with a distinct beginning, middle, and end, culminates with a friendly competition and awards ceremony.
If your community is fairly new to design challenges, we typically pose scenarios that are only peripherally related to your core work. This way, participants develop transferable skills in a safe environment without triggering emotional pushback. In other cases, GAMEs are built directly around important community problems/opportunities.
Duration: Half-, Full-, Multiple-Day
Design a Problem-Solving GAME
When faced with an important challenge, don’t just dive in and flail. Instead, turn problems into GAMEs that generate winning, innovative solutions! Learn to design a meaningful problem-solving process, addressing Guidelines, Arena, Materials, and Experience.
Duration: 4- to 8-Hours
The Art of Facilitation
Great problem-solving teams possess a secret weapon. Part pilot, part conductor, part referee, master facilitators are key to group success. This train-the-trainer workshop unveils a variety of techniques for increasing team productivity, creativity, building consensus, and getting things done.
Duration: Half- to Full-Day
Bring important projects to life. This workshop addresses project management, time management, goal setting, and people strategy, balancing innovative visioning with detailed considerations necessary for making a difference and getting things done. By event’s end, participants emerge with a flexible 12-month action-accountability plan.
Duration: Full Day
Puzzler Design Challenge Week
One of our favorites!
A core group of leaders experience a weeklong deep dive into creative problem-solving, innovative process-design, and facilitation training. They are joined by additional participants in the middle of the week for a two-day design GAME and competition.
Practice Design GAME
(typically 20-30 core leaders)
Participants work collaboratively to solve a mini problem-solving GAME while learning the basics of design thinking.
(20-30 core leaders)
Attention turns to facilitation and team strategies. In the afternoon, participants prepare to co-facilitate a larger GAME beginning Wednesday.
WEDNESDAY to THURSDAY
(20-30 core leaders, 50 - 70 additional)
Core leaders co-facilitate a 2-day problem-solving GAME custom-designed for your community, built around an exciting opportunity. The action commences in a fierce but fun public competition.
(20 - 30 core leaders)
After reflecting on our experience together, participants custom design their own problem-solving GAMEs, addressing important community challenges.
Duration: 5 Days
Recent Problem-Solving GAMES
SAVVY Arts Venture Challenge
Weeklong design GAME for performing/visual artists and arts administrators that teaches participants to become better entrepreneurs, collaborators, change agents, community pillars and dreamers.
Highly diverse teams—representing different ages, geographies, races, religions, genders, and disciplines—are challenged to solve an important problem related to the arts. The event culminates in a public competition.
In seasons 1 - 5, teams built innovative, entrepreneurial arts ventures from the ground up. During season 6, the challenge focused on designing arts businesses that solve problems for non-arts partners (bank, health care, farm, police, etc.).