An icebreaker is an activity that you can use for employees when you want to have the conversation at the job interview, team building or business meeting.

It is good to use the icebreaker game whenever the situation permits it, as it is the way for the employees to feel comfortable and to interact.

It is very effective, it will warm up the conversation between two persons at some meeting, it will make the topic for discussion stronger and it will force the employees to discuss and interact.

The icebreaker, as its name is saying, breaks the proverbial ice in the conversation.

THERE ARE VARIOUS TYPES OF ICEBREAKERS:

Icebreakers when employees are getting to know each other

If a company has many employees, it is likely that most of them won’t know each other, at least not in person.

In this case, the icebreaker can help them introduce themselves to others.

The icebreaker is a very good way to start the conversation and to catch the attention of participants so that they can interact with others and feel comfortable to express their opinion.

Icebreakers when employees know their colleagues

When employees that are part of the conversation know their colleagues, the icebreaker is still a way to loosen up the discussion if needed.

These kinds of icebreakers encourage conversation and help develop interaction between employees.

INTERESTING GAMES TO FOMENT THE TEAM SPIRIT

You spend a lot of time in front of a computer or some kind of screen. Nevertheless, you shouldn’t forget how important is to interact with an individual or a group, to socialize or enjoy nature.

These games and activities are not only educative, but they are also funny.

They help a team understand what an icebreaker is, how to think, how to work, deal with the problem and have fun.

To motivate your team and make them understand icebreakers, you can find 12 games for encouraging people to start talking:

1. The Game of Chances

Duration: 5-6 minutes

Number of participants: one group or a few small groups

Material needed: random objects

Rules: perfect team game that lasts 5 minutes. Give an item to a person of each team. They will have to get up one by one and demonstrate how the object in question is used.

The rest of the people in the team have to guess what the player who got up is doing. This player has to be mute and the demonstration must be of original and perhaps a bit absurd.

Goal: This team icebreaker inspires creativity and personal innovation

2. Winner/Loser

Duration: 5-6 minutes

Number of participants: 2 people or more

Material needed: none

Rules: Player A tells a negative fact about his life to Player B. It may be a memory of sorts, but it has to be true.

Player A will have to talk about the same experience, but with a focus on the positive aspects. Then, player B will help him explore the positive side of the negative experience. Then the roles are changed.

Target: The participants learn to express their feelings in a different way

3. Mix of Goals

Duration: 1-2 minutes.

Number of participants: as many as you can

Material needed: none

Rules: This is a game that does not last long, ideal for those looking for an extraordinary way to promote team spirit without going outside.

Have as many participants as you can and tell what you expect and how can they help during the meeting.

If you wish, offer a prize to the person who speaks with more people and another to the person who contributed to what he told.

Goal: This way, the productivity of the meeting is much better and makes the employees think about how they will contribute, instead of just thinking about what they are going to get out of the meeting.

4. Blind Drawing

Duration: 10-15 minutes

Number of participants: 2 people or more

Material needed: photos, pencils, and paper

Rules: Divide the participants into pairs. Give to one member of the couple pen and paper, and to the other, the photo.

The person with the photo will have to describe it to their partner without saying what it is. For example, if the image is a happy dog, you cannot say: “Draw a happy dog”.

The person who has a pencil and paper will draw what he or she thinks the image represents according to the verbal description. You can set a time limit of about 10 or 15 minutes

Goal: It is an activity focused on interpretation and communication. At the end of the drawing, it is interesting to see how the artist interprets the description of the partner

5. The Treasure Hunt

Duration: 1 hour

The number of participants: 2 small teams or more

Material needed: pen and paper

Rules: divide the group into teams. Make a list of ridiculous tasks for each team to do in a group. Tasks may include taking a selfie with a stranger, taking a picture of a cow outside the office, etc.

Deliver the list to each team, along with a maximum deadline in which they must complete all tasks. Whoever completes most tasks in the shortest time, wins

Goal: This is an excellent exercise to foment team spirit that helps break the office’s groups by encouraging work among people from other teams, departments or social circles.

6. Human Knot

Duration: 15-30 minutes

The number of participants: 8-20 people

Material needed: none

Rules: ask everyone to get up and form a circle facing the center. Ask them to stretch their right arm and take someone’s hand in front of them.

Next, tell them to take out the left arm and grab another hand from another person in front. Within a certain period, the group will have to untangle their arms without releasing their hands.

If the group is too large, make several small circles for the groups to compete with each other

Goal: This game is based largely on good communication and teamwork. Besides, it leads to a lot of fun conversations for free time in the workplace.

7. The Minefield

Duration: 15-30 minutes

The number of participants: 4-10 people

Material needed: several objects that can be carried in the hand and several blindfolds

Rules: Look for an open space, for example, park or some parking lot.

Place the objects randomly. Ask them to form pairs and designate one person from each couple to put the blindfold on their eyes.

The other person should guide their partner to cross the space from one side to the other without stepping on the objects, using only verbal indications.

The person who has put on the blindfold cannot speak. To make it more difficult, create specific routes that people with the band have to go through

Goal: This game focuses on trust, communication and effective listening. This activity can be an excellent game to perform on the beach.

8. The Fall of the Egg

Duration: 1-2 hours

The number of participants: 2 small groups or more

Material needed: various office supplies

Rules: create groups of 3 to 5 people each and deliver a fresh egg to every group. Place all the office items stacked.

Participants will have between 15 and 30 minutes to create a gadget that will protect the egg from falling.

Office supplies can include masking tape, pens, markers, packaging material, and newspaper.

When time runs out, throw away the protected eggs from the second or third floor of the building and check which eggs survive the fall

Goal: This classic game is excellent to encourage everyone to participate. Teamwork and problem-solving skills are used to bring group members together.

The more people are in the game, the better. You will have an egg fun encouraging team spirit. Make sure you have egg supplies in case someone breaks it during the construction process.

9. This is Better Than That

Duration: 15-20 minutes

The number of participants: not limited

Material needed: 4 objects or more

Rules: Choose 4 or more different objects. Divide the employees into teams with the same number of members.

Describe a scene where every team has to solve a problem using only those objects. It can be something like “you are lost in a wood” or “you have to save King Kong”. Ask each team to argue it.

Goal: This exercise inspires the creativity of the team in solving problems. The idea is not to put very simple situations so that it is not obvious which the most useful objects are.

10. The Interview

 Duration: depends on the group you are interviewing

The number of participants: interview-group or individual

Material needed: Paper or cardboard so they can write the answers, marker, and a clock to control the activity.

Rules: Divide the group into pairs. To make the pairs you can help with numbers, colored ribbons, papers with their names.

In each couple, one will act as an interviewer and another as an interviewee (and vice versa).

Give the group about 2 or 3 minutes so that each one thinks between 5-6 questions that will be meaningful to make the partner known to the rest of the group.

Depending on the context, the type of question can be directed a little or where we want to focus it. It’s about adapting them to the needs of the group and what we want to achieve with the icebreaker.

And make them understand that they have the opportunity to make their partner known.

After the time to generate the questions, they can start the interview with each other and vice versa. This process should not last more than 5 minutes maximum per interview (total 10 minutes).

It is good to indicate so that time does not go away and someone is left without interviewing.

Finally, each interviewer will introduce the partner to the rest of the group.

As a facilitator we must be attentive to the questions asked and if they are interesting or ingenious enough and can be of value to the group. They can be launched in full for the group to answer.

Goal: This classic activity consists in generating a series of questions to interview a classmate. Questions that they consider appropriate and that make the rest of the group know more about him or about a specific topic that will be worked on.

Let the participants produce their questions based on what they consider important to meet a partner

11. Paper Airplanes

Duration: 15-20 minutes

The number of participants: as much as you can

Material: One sheet of paper per person, one marker per person

Rules: Give each participant a sheet of paper and a marker. Ask them to write their names and two questions under the paper with the instructions deemed appropriate for the group or context in which it takes place. Then ask them to make a paper plane to your liking.

It is important that once completed, launch the planes all at once. Once they fall, each one picks them up and throws them again so that they blend into the room.

After this period, you ask that everyone take one (other than their own) and as they wrote the name they should look for the owner of that plane and ask them both questions.

After having collected the questions, each participant must present their partner, read the questions and the answer they gave.

Goal: This icebreaker is very effective for working with more or less large groups where we can meet and learn many aspects of group members.

This icebreaker is no competition, nobody wins or loses.

The idea of ​​this activity is to know each other better in a fun way and the instructions for the questions depend on where you want to focus the activity in the face of the general activity that is going to be carried out.

12. Connecting Stories

Duration: 15-20 minutes

The number of participants: as much as you can

Material: Post-it or small sheets of paper, pens

Rules: Divide into groups of 6-8 people (they could be less and make more rounds within the group). It depends on the number of participants in the general group.

The first participant writes a mini-story. It is important to note that it is not very long.

The next one continues. And so on … It can be any kind of context where we want to take the mini-stories.

We can bet on something delusional and absurd, something that starts debates, experiences related to the context of work, practice phrases, and verbs, etc.

After several rounds and after the time that we consider appropriate, all post-it will be placed online and a representative of the group will read the mini-story they have built.

Goal: Connecting stories is a fun game that helps us especially in teamwork by getting to know each other better and finding common experiences or themes among the people in the group.

As always it is very important to facilitate the activity towards the land that you consider appropriate.

ICEBREAKER QUESTIONS THAT CAN BE HELPFUL AT THE MEETING

If you want to break the uncomfortable silence for the meeting, here you can find some useful questions for starting the conversation at the meetings, team buildings or job interviews.

If you ask the right question the conversation will flow.

First of all, you have to decide if you want to start the meeting with laughing or fun or you want your meeting to start more serious, with brainstorming.

This type of questions can help those who participate in the discussion to meet each other and to warm up.

Once the icebreaker breaks the ice, the meeting will have its flow. This way you will have the opportunity to ask more questions and learn about different experiences.

When a group reunites for the first time, the atmosphere can be tense.

As people are not so comfortable with each other as they are still strangers and don’t want to leave a bad impression, the icebreaker can be a big help.

A WAY TO USE QUESTIONS FOR BREAKING THE ICE AT THE MEETINGS

Some of these questions are for people who are gathering for the first time. On the other hand, you can use any question you like for persons who work together. And some can be useful in both situations.

Choosing what question to ask to break the silence at the meetings is only limited by you. You can help yourself using these questions or you can make up your own.

Ice Breaker Questions:

  • What is challenging your world of work today?
  • Why employees are complaining?
  • Is there anything you are worried about?
  • What do you like about your colleagues?
  • How do you contribute to the company?
  • Is there anything that is moving you forward in your work?
  • What skill would you like to develop?
  • Is there anything with your colleagues that annoys you?
  • What would you like to know about your boss?
  • If your workplace was an animal, what animal would it be?
  • What would you like to change about your work?
  • If you could change three things about your work, what would that be?
  • Is there any habit that annoys you?
  • Are you planning to stay in your current position or will you change it?
  • If you won the lottery, would you resign your job?
  • Three most important characteristics of a good boss?

TYPES OF ICEBREAKER GAMES

At meetings, try using different types of icebreaker games. Use one type for fun and the other for loosening up.

If employees already know each other, this kind of game is good to warm up the conversation.

And if they have never met before, laugh and fun will only make the conversation more relaxing and interesting.

This is the sign that the employees will enjoy the discussion and that they will find the purpose in it.

The second type of icebreaker game is an activity that focuses is on informing people about events or activities.

For example, people can reunite in the company to talk about annual programs and activities. In order not to be boring, the icebreaker at the reunion is used as a form of brainstorming.

At this kind of meeting, employees can realize what is good and what is bad for the company. As everyone has some ideas and opinions, because of brainstorming, this icebreaker can be very useful.

WHY USE AN ICEBREAKER?

Icebreaker plays an important role at the meeting where communication and being comfortable are important factors.

It is good for you to know that you are an equal part of the team and that your opinion matters.

This way, obstacles that exist because of the shame are gone and you are free to express yourself.

  • When participants have already met and you want to warm up and make sure that this conversation will go in the right way, it is time for an icebreaker.
  • When employees know each other but they are working in a different department of the company, an icebreaker breaks the tension that exists between them.
  • When participants work on different levels in the hierarchy of the company, the icebreaker is a great way to break stereotypes and develop a comfortable conversation.
  • When employees don’t know each other but they share the same goals or they have a lot in common, icebreaker warms up a group before the discussion.
  • When employees are different: they are different age, ethnicity, or have different spheres of interest, the icebreaker is perfect so that they can talk and laugh and break the uncomfortable silence.

CONCLUSION

An icebreaker that is not 100% participatory does not effectively fulfill its purpose.

Although you can use other types of dynamics, we recommend that you always use an icebreaker.

Why?

Well, for the following reasons:

  • Icebreakers allow each person to express themselves and at the same time receive a share of attention from the entire group.
  • Icebreakers allow the group to learn more about what each individual thinks and how each one expresses their emotions.
  • Icebreakers create an atmosphere of harmony and unity in the group.

So never underestimate the power of icebreakers! Check out all the icebreakers we have so you can use them in your groups.

12 Fun (Not Cheesy) Ice Breaker Games Your Employees Will Enjoy

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