Working together on a daily basis is likely to provide your employees with plenty of opportunities to form bonds and camaraderie, sometimes taking them out of the workplace can yield unexpected results, and lead to some significant and different relations within the team. Team building exercises will possibly help your team work together more efficiently, help smooth over any wrinkles in team communication. As well as promoting more efficient communication skills overall, it can clarify the position that everyone holds within a team. Most importantly, team building exercises can provide the means for employees to relax! Team building events are fantastic for all of the above and are great at bringing your team closer together. This article contains seven of what we think are the best team building exercises out there. They not only provide opportunities to have fun and relax but also promote good teamwork at the same time.
Mission statements are a more relaxed team building activity, so it’s probably a good one to start with. Every participant will need a pen or a pencil, and each group (of anywhere between eight and fifty people) should have one piece of paper.
This exercise is all about helping people understand what their mission is. While they have presumably been hired to fulfill the same purpose within a company, it is interesting to see what they make of that purpose.
Before you begin, tell each group that they should think about what they believe the team or company mission to be. Give everyone ten to forty-five minutes (it depends on how big the groups are) to pass a piece of paper around for everyone to write a sentence or two about their vision of the team mission.
Discussing this after the activity can be intriguing!
What’s On Your Desk?
For this, you will need a group of twelve to thirty people, each of whom must have an item from their desk. These items can be personal, or company property. This activity can be delivered in one of two ways:
- Each person uses the item they have brought, to tell the others something about themselves, families, interests, or hobbies.
- Each person has to try and pitch their item to their teammates. Encourage them to be creative and come up with a good pitch, and encourage the people watching to rate the sale of their item.
Depending on how large the group is, this should take between twenty minutes and two hours. The object of this exercise is to help different members of the team get to know each other, and also to practice their creativity and salesmanship skills.
‘One Question’ is a good activity for an impromptu team building event because it doesn’t require any materials, only the people involved. The aim of this game is to come up with particular scenarios, whether that be becoming The President or to fly to Mars. Have each person come up with one specific question that they would ask someone to determine if they were the right fit for that scenario.
This activity is best with between eight to twelve people and should take less than an hour. The point of the exercise is to stimulate creativity, and also to gain a better understanding of what matters to the people in your team.
For Classify This, you will need around thirty random objects, as well as enough pens and paper for the entire group. This game works best with between twelve and forty people.
Lay the objects out on a table in as random a way as possible, and tell the people involved that they have to come up with as many different classifications for the items they see as possible in an hour.
The point of the exercise is to promote teamwork and creative thinking. What makes this activity exciting is the potential for seeing everyday objects in a new light, and finding ways to classify them that they wouldn’t have thought about before.
From the Best to the Worst
This exercise works best with between three and eight groups. Each group can have a maximum of six people.
To put this activity together, you will need up to eight completely random objects (the more random, the better), and enough paper and pens for everybody.
Put your random objects on a table, where everyone has a clear view of them, and tell the groups that they have to list all the objects, from best, to worst. Once they’ve created their list, they must give reasons for why the object is where it is.
The entire thing shouldn’t take more than an hour, and it is a good way for your employees to learn about the thought processes of their peers. As they will have to justify why they have listed the objects the way they have, it is also useful for promoting creativity and independent thought.
From the Best to the Worst For…
Before you worry that this is just a repeat of the last exercise, don’t worry! While it uses the same number of groups, people, and random objects, in this game you choose a disaster scenario (it can be whatever you want; zombie invasion, a sinking ship, attacking bees).
This time around, instead of ranking the objects in order of best to worst, rank them in order of how useful they would be during the specified disaster scenario, and justify your answer.
The aim of this twist on the previous ice breaker is to help with problem-solving. Break the problem down from bigger ones to smaller ones to help decide which items would be more useful than others.
Debate the Memory Game
Debate the Memory Game is an interesting twist on the typical memory game, and it is best played with a group of between eight to sixteen people. Gather some of the index cards, making sure that you have a number that is divisible by two.
Divide the cards up, and on each pair of cards write down or draw something which pertains to the company: logos, slogans, pictures, value, or whatever comes to mind.
Place all the cards face down, and let people pick them up. They get points if they manage to find two cards that are the same, but if they don’t, they have the chance to explain why and in what way the two cards are related.
This exercise should take from half an hour to an hour and a half, and the point is to help employees remember the words and images associated with the company, but also to help them practice word association.