source: exoalliance.org

In the era of COVID19, we are well in our place to ask, how would we not just survive but thrive?

I first came across ExO methodologies at Singularity University, it took me a few more years to truly appreciate how, as a method it can really allow organisations and ideas to sprint right ahead from a concept to a product or solution.

Taking part in ExO Alliance’s ExO Challenge COVID19 how powerful this methodology is to dissect, understand and fuel the energy needed to go deep into a problem and then come up with amazing ideas, some which could eventually be real products or solutions.

source: exoalliance.org

As part of the Wellness World Team, we focused on Mental health and the issues surrounding the shipping sector, more specifically seafarers that are potentially out at sea for long periods of time, without knowing how long away from home, and in the storm of COVID19.

Over a period of 5 weeks, starting April 2020, we were randomly put into teams of volunteers, of all walks of life, and the synergies began from discussion, to brainstorm, to connecting dots.

Some were working full time jobs, some were unemployed, some were recently laid off because of COVID19. What brought us together was a united view and understanding that we have to overcome COVID19 together and it’s not just limited to Governments, but us as individuals.

Seeing the growth in unemployment, ExO Alliance (now Purpose Alliance) launched the Unemployment Challenge in face of COVID19. The beauty of the ExO challenge is that it builds upon tried and tested methodologies for organisations that wish and desire to grow exponentially, and now it is tested on life issues.


As an active participant and observer to the ExO methodology it works in a number of ways:

  • It pushes you out of comfort zone;
  • Given that you are working with people from all walks of life, there is no ‘one’ way of doing something, rather it is a tug and pull as to which potential direct any conversation could go;
  • The method is one of enquiry and questioning – it’s not about having the answers, rather it is putting a wider net to see what ideas and themes arises;
  • Learning different styles and cultures – COVID19 is being tacked from the highest level to grassroots level and undergoing an ExO sprint is no different; human dynamics, leadership and styles would become a new learning experience;
  • Learning – COVID19 does have some silver lining and that is learning. Never before have we seen so many organisations offer free courses, from crafts to academia.

The 5 weeks sprint is meant to take one from starting to think of an idea to come to a full understanding of what product/solution to bring to the market. It’s ambitious but not impossible.

Given COVID19 is very much a race against time, I would highly recommend individuals and/organisations to consider this method, given that we are all undergoing great change now.

source: purposealliance.com