Top 7 Quick Team-Building Games to Play at Work
By Kevin Kearns
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Sometimes meetings can become dull and boring, almost sucking the energy and enthusiasm right from your body. Yet, doing team-building activities can take up so much time. Well, don't you worry! The seven team-building activities below are quick and easy. The costs are nominal and will usually depend on the type and nature of the prizes you give out (candy, office supplies, etc.)
- Scavenger Hunt: This can be done as individuals or small teams. Hand out a list of items and answers that each team needs to find. The items and answers should all be work-related. Some should be easier than others, but make sure to have some tricky ones in there. Give a time limit for the teams to find as many answers as possible. Value: Everyone will be reminded of some important work policies and procedures. This type of learning will last a long time because of the excitement that is paired with it.
- Get to Know Me!: Have members team up with someone they are not sitting next to in the meeting. Instruct each duo to take turns asking each other three questions: 1) name a moment in your work or personal life of which you are very proud, 2) name something that most people do not know about you, 3) interviewer's choice of any question. Then, have each person share with the larger group what they discovered about their partner. Value: The duo and group learn a lot more about each other.
- Big Foot: Have everyone line up in a straight line. Then, blindfold everyone. Instruct them to re-organize themselves according to shoe size without stating their shoe size to each other. Value: The team will need to work together on communicating without saying their shoe size and without vision. Teamwork is a must to succeed at this one.
- Spider Web: Have everyone sit across from one another; as close to a circle as possible. Holding a ball of twine, state something embarrassing about yourself and then, once the laughter dies down a little, hold onto the end of the twine and toss the ball across to the other side of the circle. Every person shares an embarrassing story and passes the twine across to someone else, while holding a connected piece. After everyone has gone, you will have a spider web connecting all of you. Value: Point out that you are all connected. Although you are different, you share similar experiences and emotions in your life. You are more alike than you are different.
- Kid's Stuff: Using poster-board, markers, and your imagination, create a board game based on the work your organization conducts. Make cards that are chosen with job-based questions that must be answered in order to move forward. Dice can be used to determine how many spaces to move. If you are not up to the creative challenge, ask a couple of volunteers to design and facilitate the game. Value: Your team will have fun and be rewarded for knowing how to do their job correctly.
- Someone You Admire: Have everyone share the name of someone they admire (current or historical figure). They also share why they believe this person is admirable. Value: Everyone will learn more about each other's values and what they believe is important. It will also bring people closer together when they realize they respect the same people.
- See What I mean?: Have a volunteer hold a sheet you have created with different shapes drawn on it. With their back to the group, the volunteer describes the shapes on the paper; everyone else tries to draw the same design based on only the verbal instruction of the volunteer. Value: The group's pictures will not be exactly the same as the original and some will be really far off. Everyone will be reminded of the importance of communication. If you would like, try having a second person describe another sheet of paper with different shapes. Then, discuss the difference in the approach.
Kevin Kearns is President of Kearns Advantage, a leadership coaching company. Kearns Advantage has a proven track record of developing strong leaders. Kevin is the author of the small book: 49 Ways to Deal With People at Work. Subscribe to Kevins leadership newsletter at http://www.kearnsadvantage.com
Article Submitted On: November 23, 2005