Top 5 Team Building Activities for Executives
When one thinks about team building exercises, they usually think of the office workers and lower management, yet team building activities for executives are just as important to producing results for a business. Here are 5 exercises that the upper crust can use to better improve their company.
1. Creating Stories Together
Executives align when they create together. Have a small group (8 or less) come together with paper and pen. The leader starts out a story, usually with the phrase “Once upon a time”, and each member gets to add their own part of the story, one word or one phrase at a time. Pass around the paper as each executive adds a single word of their choice, in a story that can be funny or serious or a mix of the 2. Once finished, read each story aloud to other teams. Focus the stories on relevant topics where you want the executives aligned. The activity promotes mutual effort with creative thought. Go further in Connect and Collaborate and executives can learn to listen, collaborate and build on top of ideas so they quickly become aligned. You improve the executives’ effectiveness and relationships within their team. One exercise in Connect and Collaborate aligns executives through sharing the creation of powerful stories.
2. Best & Worst Bosses
Executives started at the bottom just like anyone else. They had their fair share of bad bosses like anyone else. A good quick exercise is to have everyone share their best and worst boss. Ask them to tease out what made them great or what they needed to do differently. You’ll get lots of humor and gets everyone talking about effective leadership skills. Great exercise from Coaching Performance to get leaders learning from each other about leadership and coaching. Take it a step further and learn from one of the best leaders ever – Sir Ernest Shackleton in this immersive leadership challenge to Antarctica. Lead the Endurance engages executives in an immersive team building activity they’ll never forget.
3. The Executive Alphabet
Arrange into groups of about 8 in a circle. Then they close their eyes and each share a letter at a time without a pattern. For round 2, make it a bit more challenging by asking them to restart at A when 2 speak at the same time. We love this exercise. It is a great tool for busy executives who want shorter meetings that achieve more. Executives learn how to avoid “piling on” and building quickly to achieve desired results through teamwork — a goal you may want individual-oriented executives to learn. New partners learn quickly using these exercises in Welcome to the Executive Office and in Meetings that Produce Results.
4. Create as a Group
Leaders create a picture with stock images or a structure. The rest of the group closes their eyes. The leader then describes what the picture looks like, while the group creates their own picture in their heads with eyes shut. This activity illustrates the power of the visual communication and helps executives see firsthand the importance of their imagery used to communicate their strategy to the organization. For a larger shift, consider the 45 day or 121 day communicating naturally for leaders who want to lead their teams naturally. Take it a step further and your executives create visuals for the main goals and strategies of the senior leadership team.
5. Build a Better Newspaper
With only a single sheet of newspaper and a roll of tape, groups of 5 or less compete against one another to create the largest free-standing structure. This structure can reach to the ceiling if the group is well-coordinated and plans. The point of the exercise is working to solve a problem as a group using minimal resources. Go a step further and build a better company. In Team Forward, executives literally create the actions required to achieve their desired goals.
Glenn May-Anderson supports global clients transforming their results by focusing on altering the behaviors that make the difference. Get in touch with him by email at: Glenn@Learn2.com.
NATURAL COMMUNICATION STYLE.
Each person has a natural communication style.
Understanding yours can and will impact how effective you are when dealing with friends, co-workers and clients.