Explorer, Shopper, Vacationer, Prisoner

A short check-in activity to measure the team's attitude to the meeting.

Best For

A check-in activity

When to Use

Start of a meeting

This template can be used in the new version of Metro Retro - sign up for Early Access.

What is the ESVP Check-in?

ESVP stands for Explorer, Shopper, Prisoner, and Vacationer. It's a short check-in exercise that uses four metaphors to gauge how the individuals are feeling about the upcoming meeting. This is similar to a safety check - if people don't want to contribute, then the meeting might not be a good use of time!

Each metaphor comes with an explanation:

Explorer - You're eager to discover new ideas and insights, and want to learn as much as possible.

Shopper - You will look over all the available information, and you're happy to leave with one new useful idea.

Vacationer - You're not too interested in the meeting, but are happy to take a break from the day-to-day work.

Prisoner - You feel forced to attend, and you'd rather be doing something else.

How to run the ESVP Check-in

After explaining the exercise and reading out each category to the team, ask them to place a token to indicate how they feel.

Once everyone has done this, review the results together and lead a discussion on what it means for the meeting at hand. Remind them that they can work as a team to change what they're doing.

Remind the group that anyone who doesn't want to be in the meeting is not forced to attend.


This check-in exercise might not be appropriate for every team and circumstance, as it does require a level of psychological safety for people to speak their mind.

Similar templates