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Shrinking Vessel Team Building and 6 Other Great Exercises

shrinking vessel team building

Seeking team building exercises workplace fun begin here!

Move beyond the ordinary routine that can stem from a stagnant workplace. Team building exercises workplace can add energy and change the pace to give you a fresh outlook.  This outlook might be what you need to make work interesting again.

Bonding Belt

Form two or more teams.  You will then tie a string around each group forming the bonding belt.  The job of the team is to move from point A to point B.  As the group leader, you are responsible for timing them as they work together to move from area to area.  You can increase the challenge by making them move blindfolded.  Alternatively, you can introduce hazards or land mines that they must navigate around to make the route more difficult.


Divide the group in half with one person standing across from another forming a line.  Each person should take mental note of the physical attributes of the individual standing across from him or her.  One side will start.  Their job is to exchange physical attributes with the people in their line or alter items in a way so that they appear different.  The half of the group will keep their eyes shut or leave the room as to allow the person to make changes.  After an allotted time, say 30 seconds, they will open their eyes or reenter the room.  The person must identify the ten attributes that the other person changed.  You will then switch tasks allowing the other person an opportunity to make alterations.

Impromptu Skit

As a team leader, you will gather an array of items available in the workplace.  You will then break the larger group into smaller teams.  These smaller teams will be responsible for developing a skit using the available prompts.  If you desire, you could provide a bit of guidance by stating the scope of the skit pertain to work or a problem they are facing.  Providing this direction may prove beneficial as it leads to large group discussions.

Shrinking Vessel Team Building

Using string, you can create boundaries.  Group members are asked to stay within the confines of these boundaries.  Slowly, you will shrink the boundary, forcing members to respond creatively to stay within this fenced in area.


Provide groups with an assortment of construction materials like toothpicks or Popsicle sticks.  Give the groups 15 minutes to assemble a shelter to protect them from the elements.  The catch is that one person from each group has frostbite on their hands.  Due to this frostbite, they are unable to participate in the assembly process but are allowed to speak.  The rest of the team suffers from snow blindness and must keep their eyes covered during assembly.  When time runs out, they will leave their shelter alone.  You will then test their construction prowess by turning on an electric fan aimed directly at their shelter.  This test will determine if the group survives.

Spider Web

Have all team members assemble within a room.  You will then place two strings that stretch across the doorway.  The team is tasked to get out of the room with as many survivors as possible.  If an individual happens to touch the string, they do not survive.  This task can be made more difficult with the addition of additional strength.

Local Community Event

Take advantage of the uniqueness of your community.  Each community has a unique capability like paintballing, mini golf, Frisbee golf, or go carts.  You can also go to a park and have a picnic.  There are also community sightseeing attractions that you can visit.  Often locals do visit the sites and fail to take advantage of this unique attraction.

The next time they have a team building exercises, workplace setting can be a happier place so embrace the opportunity.

10 Team Building Activities for Work Small Groups

Team Building Activities for Work Small Groups

Team building activities for work, small groups offer the opportunity to bring members together to create cohesion.  Team building activities can be fun, but the challenge is finding activities that people enjoy without saying ugh.

Choosing the wrong activity can be painful for everyone, participants and the leader.  When you force people to do something that they do not desire they may hold resentment.  This resentment, in turn, can lead to frustrations.

When you take the time to assemble a team activity, you want individuals to relax and enjoy themselves.  Think of this as an opportunity to remove oneself from the daily stress of work.

Here are ten team building activities for work small groups that are certain to delight.  While some are shorter than others are, all of them bring members closer together.

10 Team Building Activities for Work Small Groups

  1. Office Trivia

A quick game for oneself or with a small group.  As the leader, you will develop a series of trivia questions that will test the awareness of your team.  Develop questions about the work environment.


  1. Where is the garbage can in the manager’s office located?
  2. How many do people work in customer service (or another department)?
  3. Whose birthday is coming up next? (Assuming you post the birthday of employees).

You can provide an award for the winning team if you so desire.

  1. Community Service Day

Find a charity or community service project that matches your organizational goals.  You can always adopt a highway and clean up the side of the road.  In some communities, you may be able to list your company’s name along that stretch of roadway.  This game is a great way to get your name out into the community (advertising) for a positive cause.

  1. Salt and Pepper

Create a list of famous pairs or use the one found at Factacular.com.  You will then gather your team into a room. As they enter, you will place a card with one of the names of the famous pairs on their back.  After everyone arrives, you will provide the following directions.  They are only allowed to ask yes or no questions of one another.  The first challenge is to determine the name of the person on their back.  Challenge number two is to find the second half of the missing pair.

  1. Memory Wall

As the leader of the activity, you will create a theme for the group.  You should attempt to make the theme specific but allow individuals the freedom to have different perspectives.  As such, they should be able to come up with a memorable moment that was important to them.  For example, you could select a phrase like “Last 3 Months.”  Individuals will then be asked to provide a picture of something that symbolizes that important moment.  Once each person has drawn their symbol, they will be asked to share the significance of the symbol and why the event was memorable with the group.

  1. Egg Drop

Allow members of the small workgroup access to a variety of supplies in the workplace.  Using the supplies provided they would have to construct a manner to protect an egg from a drop from an elevated level.

  1. Survivor

Provide members with a workplace survival scenario.  The task of the employees is to find ten items in their workplace that will help them survive the scenario.  After they find ten items, they will need to rank them in priority.  After all the groups have finished these two activities, they will have to share their item selection and the reason for the order to the entire group.

  1. Talking in Circles

Connect a long piece of string by the two ends.  Each will grab the string and make the shape as you shout them out.  As individuals complete these tasks quickly without any frustrations, tell them to make another shape but this time keep their eyes shut.  Asking them to keep their eyes closed will make them do two things.  First, they must be present in the moment while trying to be aware of their surroundings.  Second, this challenge forces them to try to communicate with another in a clear fashion.Tarp Flip

       Tarp Flip

Lay a tarp out on the floor.  Tell everyone to remain on the tarp at all times.  Their job is to flip the tarp over without stepping off it.  The size of the tarp should match the size of the group.  For example, choose a smaller tarp for smaller groups.

Lay a tarp out on the floor.  Tell everyone to remain on the tarp at all times.  Their job is to flip the tarp over without stepping off it.  The size of the tarp should match the size of the group.  For example, choose a smaller tarp for smaller groups.

  1. Beach Ball Toss

Each participant should think of three general questions they would like to ask someone else.  Since you are the lucky leader, you will choose the questions for the ball.  Participants will then throw the ball to one another.  When a person catches the ball, they will read the question aloud that is closest to their thumb.  They will then provide an answer to the question.

  1. Whose Office is it?

This game is for teams operating remotely.  Have each person take a photo of his or her work environment.  You will then show a picture of all the workspaces, and members will guess who belongs.  A side benefit of this game is that you see how others work, and you can add or change your environment from seeing the pictures of others.

Empathy Exercises for the Workplace: Deeper Learning

empathy exercises for the workplace

Significance Empathy Exercises for the Workplace

Empathy exercises for the workplace can be an organizational tool for aspiring leaders.

As a leader, you are well aware of the problems in avoiding team building activities for workplace.  You understand that when opportunities are not available for your team to come together to interact can lead to deteriorating relationships, frustrations, and diminishing productivity.

In this post, you will learn about six reasons to do team-building activities on a regular ongoing basis.

As a leader, you routinely make efforts to enhance and develop core organizational strengths.  One of the main differentiators of any business is the individuals who comprise the workplace setting.  A strong team is unified, communicates clearly, and respects the value each member contributes to the group’s mission statement.

What is the benefit of Empathy Exercises for the Workplace?

  1. Social Skill Building

The biggest reason for team building activities is creating opportunities for the team to socialize.  Many business environments have high levels of stress.  Walking through the workplace with open ears you will routinely hear the grumbles about management and other divisions on the team.

Despite no team building experiences, you will hear the irritations of those on the team.  If you are going to hear about the pain points facing your team, regardless you may as well offer a chance for individuals to get together.  This is especially true when the event provides development skill value.

Allow your team time for learning.  Give them a chance to interact with one another in a fun low-stress environment.

  1. Collaboration

Teams that see each other periodically learn to accept each other.  They begin to appreciate the value and contributions they make to the success of the business.  Unified teams have trust one another.

Trust breeds collaboration.  Businesses with the capability to interact with one another across organizational divisions are more innovative, efficient, and happier workplaces.

  1. Empathy

Team building events create cohesion.  Members that would not regularly come across each other’s path are free to do so.  Members that work together in a fun setting can gain an appreciation for one another.  Allowing different members to interact opens the door to new perspectives.  This perspective can generate empathy for one another. Individuals can learn from one another and see organizational problems in a unique light.

Empathy for coworkers helps to remove tunnel vision.  This paradigm shift creates the possibility for innovative workplace solutions.

  1. Motivation

Two things can occur during periods of team building activities.  First, you, the leader, can use the time before the start of the event to give an inspirational talk and excite your team.  You can also connect the activity to the greater scope of the business mission during a debriefing.  These two times are optimal situations to motivate and engage your team.

The second period is the result of employee engagement.  Employees can be motivated and energized through the interactions with others.  Individuals can also benefit from breaking up their daily routine.  These stints can lead to a fresh perspective on the problems workers regularly encounter.

  1. Efficiency

Team building activities for the workplace that foster skill development can lead to productivity improvements.  Ideally, the chosen activity coincides with problems facing team members or the mission and vision statement itself.

Events that enhance skills lead to efficiency improvements.  According to Peter Drucker, “efficiency is doing things right; effectiveness is doing the right things.”

  1. Improved Memory

These situations generate moments that keep important issues at the forefront.  Since these important concerns are a priority workers are better prepared to handle the daily stress of their job, working with others, and dealing with customer service matters.

If you want to improve your memory, you need to create opportunities to practice the issues that matter most.  Repetition is key to the development of muscle memory.  Through practice, you develop habits that become second nature.


Move beyond the doldrums and complaints that occur routinely in the workplace. Embrace team building activities for workplace.  Through acceptance of these types of activities, you can develop social skills that aid in the collaborative process.  Furthermore, interacting with coworkers changes your mindset allowing you to see through a news lens that accompanies empathy.  Instituting workplace games break up routine days and provide motivation and efficiency improvements.  Moreover, the skills that are put to use with team building games when matched to problems facing employees can improve one’s memory.

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