Embracing Change

This game exposes our thoughts on changing and our acceptance to change. Effective change requires open mind and technical competence.

Break into groups of two and allow each other to get to know each other for a couple minutes. Have one person turn around and have the other person change five things on them, such as take off glasses, add a pen to shift pocket, etc. When five items are changed ask your partner to turn around and identify as many of the changes as possible. Now alternate roles and do the same. Do this for 4-5 cycles without repeating the same changed item (for example you can only take off your glasses one time).

How many people started floundering for ideas in early rounds? How many people started looking around the room for supporting ideas? How many made the easiest changes first? What innovative ideas were there? Did you find that the more you changed the more difficult it became to change?

Famous Names

Make up a list of famous names, one name written on one sticker label. Stick one famous name on the back of each participant. The rules are that the participant can ask each person in the room one question that can be answered by either a "yes" or a "no.”

Example: "Is this famous person a male or female?"

After the participant receives the answer, he or she must move on and ask another person the next question. The person that guesses his or her "identity" with the fewest questions gets a prize.

Are you Alert?

This is a fun and quick activity to stress the importance of being alert and observant. Before the meeting, prepare a tray of at least 25 items and cover the tray. Participants will have one minute to look at the objects on a tray before covering it again.

It is best to keep everyone seated and position the items so they can be viewed by everyone from their seats. They will then be asked to write down as many things as they can remember. Ask for volunteers to read their list.

Award a prize for the person who remembers the most items.

Grab Bag

Place a variety of objects placed in a bag. Have each person pull out an object from a bag and explain how they are similar to it. Pass the bag on to the next person, you can put the objects back after each turn or leave them out.

This obviously leaves those later in line with fewer things to pick from. You can also have them select from the bag without looking, this would require giving that person a few seconds to come up with a response and can be more nerve wrecking.

Or the team facilitator can hand out an object to each person, then give each person a few minutes to think about how they are similar to their object and then go around and let each person voice their response.


This activity allows the development of synergy, no one person is as smart as everyone combined. First, ask individuals to write down the keyboard of a standard typewriter from memory. Then allow groups of four to compare keyboards.

When individuals or groups feel they have the perfect keyboard, they should turn their paper over and wait patiently. If the group of four is not certain they are correct, they can merge with another group, and so on.

Display a typewriter keyboard for them to check their answers. Draw the conclusion that we must share information and work together to be the most effective as a group.

Values Auction

This warm-up is related to the warm-up "WHAT ARE YOUR VALUES?” An alternative to having the participants discuss their top three values is to have an auction of the values. Explain that they are being given an opportunity of a lifetime. They are going to be given $10,000 to spend on an auction of the values they rated in the activity "WHAT ARE YOUR VALUES?”

Before beginning the auction, record the names of all participants on a flip chart or chalkboard. As each value is sold, record the price and the value next to the participant's name. Be sure to keep a running total amount spent for each participant so that no one spends beyond the $10,000 limit.

Here is an example of how the auction is started:

"Okay let's begin. Who would like to buy a comfortable life, full of prosperity and all the good things life has to offer?” Continue auctioning the rest of the values.

In a large group, discuss which value has the most importance for your group and why. Whenever possible, relate to work and/or the purpose of the meeting.

Scavenger Hunt

Provide a list of criteria for each participant to seek from their peers. Instruct them to walk around the room and try to find someone in this group who matches as many of the questions as possible. The same person may be used for more than one question.

1. Someone with the same color eyes.
2. Someone born in the same city, state, or country.
3. Someone who has the same astrological sign.
4. Someone who likes the same sport.
5. Someone who has the same favorite dessert.
6. Someone who is the youngest of the family.
7. Someone who would like to write a book.
8. Someone who has seen the same movie at least three times.
9. Someone who has lived abroad.
10. Someone who likes to ski.
11. Someone who is an only child.
12. Someone who can speak two languages.
13. Someone who likes to cook.

Have everyone record and announce the number of questions that they received answers to within five minutes. Offer a prize for the person who found the most similarities.

Two Truths and a Lie

The object of the Game is to guess which of the three "facts" is the lie to get the group members to know each other. There are no items or preparation required other than a few minutes for each person to come up with two truthful statements and one lie about themselves.

Example: The three things one person could say are “I enjoy skydiving”, “I can speak three languages fluently”, and “I am an only child."

The others try to guess the lie and once everyone has made their choice the lie is revealed. Those that were correct get a point and so on. The person with the most points could be awarded a prize.


Break into groups of no larger than five people. Discuss the top five items you would have brought with you if you knew there was a chance that you might be stranded on a deserted island. Note that they are only allowed five items per team, not per person. Have each group discuss their response with an elected spokesperson.

This activity helps them to learn about other's values and problem solving styles and promotes teamwork.


Divide the group into teams of 3-4 people. Give each team the same diagram for building a skyscraper with a deck of cards. The team that can build the highest structure in five minutes wins a prize. The goal of this activity is to enhance teamwork or to create positive interaction between the members of a hostile group.

Goal Mapping

Divide into teams of four people and assign one champion and one recorder. The object of this warm-up is to recognize the need to plan and observe how others make and implement their plans.

Inform the subgroups that they are planning a trip from Boston to New York City. The following conditions apply:

1. It is a weekend trip (three days).
2. There is a family of five.
3. Budget is limited to $500.
4. There is a working car.

Taking the above factors into consideration, plan a trip. After six minutes, ask for group reports. Discuss the importance of planning the differences between the groups.

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