One of my favorite team-building activities of late has been the “Line Up.” It’s an exercise that involves all of the participants lining up single-file according to a specified criteria. As an example, you might have everyone line-up alphabetically by first name. As you specify different criteria, you can add conditions like not being able to talk or having everyone close their eyes.
The normal exercise is great for large groups–you get people moving around and visually learning about their peers through where they stand in each line. However the real fun I’ve had with the exercise is with smaller teams. Having 7-10 people go through the exercise gives you time to discuss the different challenges and really get to know each other.
If you’d like to incorporate the Line Up team-building activity into your next gathering, you can follow the instructions in the following presentation, or download it and take it with you. The presentation provides instructions, an example, and a set of 8 criteria that build trust each step of the way. Some additional team-building tips are included after the presentation.
Some additional tips to make the most of this team-building activity:
- There are countless other criteria you could use; if you decide to switch them up, think about what topics the participants would gain from learning about each other.
- The order of the slides is important as the challenges should slowly build in amount of discussion and intimacy of questions.
- The last challenge allows you to gauge the effectiveness of the exercise. Regardless of how people respond, you can share with them one of my favorite notes about team-building:
- “Studies show that people become closer when they share emotion and experiences. So if you guys love this exercise, then I’ve done my job because you’ve become closer over the activity. If you guys hated this exercise, I’ve still done my job because you’ve become closer together over all hating me for making you do it.”
Done this activity before? What’s your favorite criteria to use? Share it in the comments!