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Lego newest fad in training and development

Legos aren't just for kids anymore. More than 400 companies around the world have used the popular snap-together blocks as a training and development tool.

Lego Group, the Danish toy company that manufactures and distributes Legos, has created a business resource called Serious Play, which, according to its website, "is based on the belief that everyone can contribute to the discussion, the decisions and the outcome."

The two-day training sessions, which are supposed to help employees enhance organizational creativity and performance, cost about $7,000 US.

During the session, Lego facilitators help participants build models that act as metaphors for their organization's strengths, weaknesses and overall challenges.

On its website, the company says the program is "based on research that shows that this kind of hands-on, minds-on learning produces a deeper, more meaningful understanding of the world and its possibilities" and that the program "deepens the reflection process and supports an effective dialogue" among participants.

Canadian organizations that have taken part in the program include the Northwestern Ontario Development Network in Thunder Bay, Ont., the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre and advertising agency Leo Burnett Canada.

There are about 110 facilitators around the world and some of the big-name clients include Home Depot and R&L Foods (owner and operator of Taco Bell and KFC).

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