GAMEchange Methodology iLEAD Trees

MNCP iLEAD Tool 3: Leadership Action Tree

The Leadership Action Tree (or Challenge/Action Tree) identifies actions that address leadership challenges – but the aim is action not getting depressed with all the many challenges.

The Leadership Tree builds on the Action Tree against Child Marriage (an Action Tree for combating Child Marriage should be done first if it has not been done to identify the various arguments used and how to counter them. It is done first individually.

The Leadership Tree looks at different contexts with three roots: informal peer sharing with those one is close to, group sharing and wider advocacy.


Step 1: Leadership Vision Trunk

Draw two lines for the trunk in the middle of the sheet of paper.
Place a symbol for leadership vision/ MNCP logo from Tool 1 at the top of the trunk.
Put a circle for current leadership position at the bottom of the trunk.

Step 2: Leadership challenge roots

What are the challenges that prevent your leadership? Divide the roots into 3 parts: group on the left, advocacy/government/powerful people on the right linked by the informal peer sharing in the middle. This informal leadership is likely to be the most significant in change and also achieving change on the other roots.

Step 3: Branches or potential solutions

For each root draw one branch: group on the left, advocacy/ government/ powerful people on the right linked by the informal peer sharing in the middle. Then for each element on the roots identify an appropriate action, or series of actions which can be taken. Put these in the corresponding position along the branch.

Step 4: Forces on the Trunk

What are the external context forces acting on the trunk or the subsoil? These can be opportunities or challenges.

Step 5: Action fruits for tracking

Looking at the challenges, forces and solutions identify 5 actions that you can take in the next month to start to make the tree grow. Put these as green fruits on the branches that you will try to turn red and ripen. When you have achieved them put a big red circle.

Step 6: Leadership shared: Win-win tree

Then individual trees are shared and combined as a ‘win-win’ tree. All elements are colour coded for women and men to see which challenges, solutions, forces and actions are gender-specific and which are common. And establish how women and men can work together for change and support each other’s leadership.

Diagram Tools GAMEchange Methodology Trees

Issue Trees

Trees are concept diagrams used for analysis of issues and strategies that can be tracked over time.

What are they?

Trees show relationships between different types of inputs and outputs in order to identify actions and target achievements.

All elements of the tree: trunk visions/structures, roots, branches and particularly the action fruits can be quantified for monitoring and impact assessment.

Types of Trees
  • Happy Family or Gender Balance Tree: The Happy family Balance Tree identifies gender and age inequalities in work contribution and expenditure benefits in the household and the changes needed for balance to make the tree grow straight and the tree to be sustainable and thrive.
  • Livelihood / Business / Financial Management Tree: Livelihood Trees are a ‘snapshot’ planning tool to examine existing costs and income structure for particular economic activities and how incomes can be increased through changing costs and/or expenditures to enable reinvestment and savings.
  • Challenge Action Tree: Challenge Action Tree (an action-oriented adaptation of a ‘problem solution tree) examines the causes of challenges, potential solutions to reach a vision and action commitments needed by individuals to move forward.
  • Multi-stakeholder negotiation ‘win-win’ trees to examine different stakeholder perspectives and bring these together as a set of action commitments for each stakeholder.

How to do it: Generic steps

Step 1: Trunk

Trees start from a trunk representing an issue or an institution like a household or community. They may also have circular linkages from branches to roots to show cycles of cross-fertilisation. representing an issue or an institution like a household or community with vision top and current circle bottom.

step 2: roots

to show inputs or causes/dimensions/perspectives.

Step 3: Branches

to show outputs or potential solutions.

Step 4: Forces

Symbols outside the trunk to show external forces and/or links between roots and branches.

Step 5: SMART Action Fruits

GAMEchange Trees must have fruits or concrete action commitments that can be implemented by individuals within a given time-frame and tracked. Not just vague ‘solutions’ like ‘more training and awareness’. These individual change commitments are shown on the branches (like apples), roots (like potatoes) and/or trunk (like cocoa).

The action fruits are tracked and turn red as they ripen. Symbols are put against actions or targets that need more attention.