Poor communication is often the root of many problems, leading to conflicts, missed deadlines, mistakes, and lost opportunities. As such, it often pays to help your people develop their good communication skills.
Using appropriate team building exercises is a great way of doing this.
Not only will these enhance their communication skills and help them do an outstanding job, but these will also help them to create and establish positive relationships with one another.
Help Your People Communicate Better With These 7 Team Building Exercises
Exercise 1: Building Blocks
Building blocks will help develop instructional and descriptive skills and teamwork. It works best with small groups and requires two identical sets of building blocks. This game will involve four roles – director, builder, observer, and runner.
One person is the director, another person is the builder, and the 3rd person is the runner.
Everyone else is the observer. But if the group has only three people, all will share the observer role.
On opposite sides of the room, put the builder and the director with their backs to each other. Each of them holds their own set of building blocks. The facilitator will build something with the director’s blocks.
The director will give instructions to the runner who will relay those instructions to the builder so that the builder creates an exact replica of the director’s blocks. After 10 minutes, compare what the builder created to that of the director’s.
Let the group reflect on the exercise and get feedback from all four roles. Then, run the exercise once again and see how the team improves.
Exercise 2: Bull Ring
Bull ring is among the best physical team building exercises for effective communication and teamwork. Each member of the group should have a piece of string, and each string must be tied to a 1.5 inch metal ring.
The group’s mission is to carry a ball over and around several obstacles and place the ball on a goal – perhaps on a piece of pipe or a water bottle. When the team drops the ball, they must start again from the beginning.
Once the team reaches the goal, discuss the different challenges, how each participant took the lead, and what they have learned from the exercise.
Exercise 3: Phrase Ball
To encourage fast thought and communication to prepare for situations that may put you on the spot and have to speak without any preparation is the main goal of this team building exercise. A group of at least five people and a small, soft ball are required to play this game.
Organize them into a circle. During the 1st round, group members must take turns throwing the ball back and forth. As every member catches the ball, he must say a simple descriptive phrase like a funny movie or the friendly kitty.
If everyone is comfortable with creating phrases, change the game for the 2nd round. The person holding the ball must start a phrase, and then throw the ball to another person who will finish the phrase and begin with another phrase.
Continue playing the game until everyone seems relaxed speaking extemporaneously.
After that, stop the game and discuss the activity – how every participant’s feeling changed through the entire game and which round was simpler and easier.
Exercise 4: Get It Together
Build your team’s descriptive, voice-recognition and listening skills with this game. The Get It Together exercise will also help develop trust despite confusion.
Divide your group into pairs. A person in every pair must be blindfolded. It’s the job of the blindfolded person to get a specific item from the center of the circle depending on the cues provided by his partner.
This teambuilding exercise may seem easy at the beginning, but it will become more complicated as more and more blindfolded people enter the circle and try to find items. At the end of the activity, discuss the different methods each pair used to tune out others’ noise and concentrate on working as a team.
Exercise 5: Picture It
Have the participants sit back-to-back in pairs. Give a piece of paper with the name of a simple object to participants facing left and a piece of blank paper and a pencil to those facing right.
The participants facing left (describers) must describe the object, but not name it. The participants facing right (artists) will then draw the object. After 2 minutes, the describers must reveal the name of the object they were issued, and the artists reveal their drawings.
The succeeding discussion will illuminate the idea that what might appear to be simple in a person’s mind isn’t always simple to another person.
Exercise 6: Just Listen
This activity will encourage participants to communicate their insights about a topic. Have the team members sit in pairs and give each pair eight index cards.
One partner must choose a card and then speak about how he feels about the topic for three minutes. As he talks, the other person only listens without speaking.
After three minutes, the listener will recap what his partner said in one minute. He will only summarize – he can’t agree or disagree. After that, the roles switch.
This exercise will help strengthen one’s listening skills, which is a vital part of good communication. Also, it shows every participant how to listen with an open mind.
Exercise 7: Navigation By Proxy
Navigation by proxy is a team building exercise done in teams of two. An obstacle course will be set up using different non-sharp objects like waste baskets, cardboard boxes and plastic cups.
One member of the team must be blindfolded while the other one provides instructions to guide the blindfolded person throughout the course without disturbing any of the obstacles.
The first team that completes the course with the least number of obstacles disturbed wins. Effective listening and clear instructions will play a very important part in successfully finishing the obstacle course.
Regardless of how well your team communicates, using team building activities for effective communication is a fun way of establishing good working relationships.
Some activities that focus on communication will also help people to develop qualities that both job seekers and employees must have, such as leadership skills, creativity, and problem solving abilities.
If you are in need of more tips on how Team Building Exercises can effectively and efficiently help your team, Contact us here or Call Infinity Staffing Services at (408) 610-9120 Today!