#4 Kick Starters
Two fave kickoff activities for projects and workshops:
Super simple. Give all the participants a criteria by which to organize themselves into a line. The rule is that they cannot talk during the activity.
- Form a line according to how long you worked at our company
- Form a line by birth month/day
This is a quick exercise and gets people moving around and laughing a little. As well as finding commonalities with each other (unless you are at the end of a line!).
For the facilitators, knowing how long people had worked at the company turned out to be a subtle way to figure out who the long-timers and newbies were. Debrief the group on how they solved the challenge without talking.
B. Hopes & Fears
I watched Rachana Rele use this many times to surface the underlying concerns at the start of a project and get the team aligned on expectations.
Short instructions. At the beginning of a design project, each team member writes their Goals, Fears & Team member Expectations for the project on a white board. For Expectations, people write what they expect of themselves as well as each individual team member. Debrief as a group. (Tip: It’s important to write these so they are visible to everyone in the room. We would carve up the white board so everyone had space to write simultaneously.)