Author Profile Picture

Rod Webb

Glasstap Limited

Director and Co-Founder

Read more from Rod Webb

googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display(‘div-gpt-ad-1705321608055-0’); });

Change: Are you in the Driving Seat?


Over the past three years, I’ve been spending a lot of time reviewing and updating face-to-face training activities I’ve written for Trainers’ Library so that they can be delivered remotely using Zoom or Teams. 

One that I recently revisited was Passengers, a change management module, that uses a car journey as a metaphor for change. It’s a customer favourite – a powerful activity that invites participants to reflect on change from different perspectives.

In summary, there’s the driver, who of course controls the route and the speed at which you travel, perhaps with input from other passengers (some of which might not be welcome). Some people will like this seat, but on a journey that involves windy roads, and a variety of obstacles, it can also feel scary having all that responsibility, particularly if you’re not a confident driver. 

And then there are the passengers. The front seat passenger, if they're not asleep, will be able to see the route ahead and perhaps offer guidance to the driver. Of course, their ability and willingness to make a positive contribution to the journey won’t just depend on their wakefulness; it’ll be heavily influenced by their relationship with the driver.

Meanwhile, the back seat passengers have no clear view of the road ahead and are perhaps being thrown around as the car swerves unexpectedly or hits a pothole they couldn’t see. 

And what if one of the back seat passengers is a foreign hitchhiker, who has only a limited understanding of what the others are saying? They might have very little idea of what’s going on and could spend most of the journey quietly praying that the car is indeed going in a direction they want to travel.

The parallels between the passengers in a car and those going through a change journey at work should be apparent. There’s the driver, the person with responsibility for delivering change and around them the various passengers, including the hitchhiker, who might, for example, be a new starter.

Think about change going on at work around you now. Where are you sitting? How does it feel? Are you perhaps sitting in the driver seat wishing others understood how challenging it is? Or perhaps you’re in the passenger seat, quietly seething and thinking to yourself how much better things would be if you were driving! 

Metaphors like this provide a fun but powerful way to explore feelings, emotions and behaviours at work, and can help both managers and their teams understand different perspectives and responses to what’s happening. It’s why it’s a tool I come back to time and again when I want to design training material that engages both trainers and their participants and provides the scope for learner-led lightbulb moments.

If you’d like to know more about this activity and how to access it, or how Trainers’ Library membership could reduce the time it takes to design engaging, creative and powerful training by more than 80%, please do get in touch. 

2 Responses

  1. Thanks for sharing. It’s
    Thanks for sharing. It’s truly impressive to hear about your dedication to adapting face-to-face training activities for remote delivery over the past three years, especially given the circumstances. The “Passengers” module you mentioned, which uses a car journey as a metaphor for change, sounds like a creative and effective way to engage participants in reflecting on change from different perspectives.

Author Profile Picture
Rod Webb

Director and Co-Founder

Read more from Rod Webb

Get the latest from TrainingZone.

Elevate your L&D expertise by subscribing to TrainingZone’s newsletter! Get curated insights, premium reports, and event updates from industry leaders.

Thank you!