Go to main content

What is Start, Stop, Continue?

Stop, Start, Continue is an exercise used to evaluate a group's activities and make decisions about which ones to prioritize going forward. Steps include:

  1. Step 1: Setup
    Create three blank lists labeled Start, Stop, and Continue.
    • Start: Brand new initiatives or activities
    • Stop: things the group is currently doing that aren't delivering value or that no longer align with the current priorities.
    • Continue: things that are working and should be carried forward on the new plan.
  2. Step 2: Individual Brainstorming
    Give everyone 10 to 15 minutes to write individually in silence. You can also assign this brainstorming as pre-work, asking everyone to come with their lists of activities to start, stop, and continue.
  3. Step 3: Build a Shared List
    Compare and combine individual lists. For smaller groups, go around the room, asking people to place one idea at a time into the appropriate category. For larger groups, first combine lists in groups of 4 or 5. Then combine the lists from each group into a single, shared list.
  4. Step 4: Review Results
    When all the notes are posted, review and discuss together.

You can also use this exercise to prioritize your personal task list. Draw three columns on a sheet of paper or create a three-column spreadsheet. Then work through your current task list, putting each one into a column. The goal is to free up time to focus on the highest value activity (Starts and Continues) by placing many tasks into the Stop column.

Learn More
Related Lucid Blog Posts
Related Templates
Related Glossary Terms
4Ls Technique, Plus, Retrospective, Interesting (PMI), Minus

Like this page? Share it!