The Story of the Deck

In Church Unique, Will Mancini writes, “During my career as a vision architect, I have been consumed by the question, What is the best way for any church to understand how its vision can penetrate and influence the culture of the church?” The answer came with the development of the Vision Integration Model.  The primary motive for the development of the model was to give teams a simple tool to inspire conversations that would release redemptive passion for the local church. Working from our driving assumption that the success of advancing vision is directly proportional to the degree to which the vision is first aligned and integrated, we are continually looking for ways we can help churches achieve that.  The Vision DECK was developed from this drive to provide missional tools for church leaders.  But it was not built overnight- the DECK developed in stages over a period of time.

Will recounts the genesis of the flashcard concept.  “The idea came to me in 2004 while on site with a client in Crozet, Virginia.  I wanted to create an innovative and engaging way to help teams dive deeper into discovering their vision.  The flashcard style was a perfect way to accomplish this because the selection of the appropriate exercise is very dynamic.  I imagined sorting through the cards, selecting just the right exercise and sending the break-out leader off with his group, exercise in hand.”  The first version of the cards included about a dozen exercises that Will created and assembled at Kinko’s (view one of the original cards in the snapshot to the right). Using those first cards while working with leadership teams, the Auxano team came to a realization that the concept should be expanded.

This realization came from the understanding that many teams stop robust dialogue when their navigator (consultant) is not present.  This led to the second stage in the development of the DECK.  The Auxano team knew that success in walking the Vision Pathway is directly related to the consistency and transparency of conversations  in between visits and after the formal process was complete.  The flashcard idea then expanded to include not just real time visioning, but implementation and follow-up as as well.

The third stage was the formalization of the Vision Integration Model as the organizing construct for the cards.

Finally, with Leadership Network’s interest in providing a book about the Auxano process, the team decided to create a companion tool.  This decision led to the refinement of the DECK’s creative aspect and the use of focus groups for quality control.

Today, the Vision DECK is truly a one-of-a-kind product built from consulting experiences with hundreds of churches across the country.  Auxano’s approach engages individuals deeply by making it “experiential” with collaborative dynamics.  Time after time, this style of learning builds teamwork, heightens discernment and leads to “ah-ha” moments, that define the future of the church.  The DECK is a collection of fifty-two of Auxano’s best team exercises presented in a way that they are easy to use, engaging, and best of all, will help you build missional momentum.  Read more about how the DECK came to life.