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Team Building Icebreakers

Updated on September 19, 2010

Team Building Icebreakers

Team building icebreakers can be used to improve communication and efficiency in the workplace or elsewhere. Icebreakers are especially helpful when there is a group of people who will be working as a team but do not know each other very well. When you use team building activities, people get to know and trust each other better. Team building icebreakers are also great for identifying the strengths and weaknesses of people on the team. Often these activities may seem childish or silly but at the core of every effective team is a group of people who know and trust each other. Icebreakers can help get your team to that point.

Icebreaker #1

One popular icebreaker is the “two truths and a lie” game. In this game each person will state two truths about themselves and one lie about themselves. Then the rest of the team guesses which one is the lie. For example, the first person in team might say,

“I have been married 3 times.

I am on a softball team.

I have traveled to 14 different countries.”

Then the team guesses which on is a lie. This team building exercise can be a lot of fun and really help you teammates get to know each other. Sometimes, the team learns some pretty intriguing things about each other by the truths they have given.

Icebreaker #2

Another team building icebreaker used a lot in customer service type jobs is role playing. For example, in a call center training class, have each person take a turn being “on the phone”. Then the rest of the team takes turns being the angry customer. Here is an example of how this might work. Assume teammate 1 is “on the phone”.

Teammate 1- “Thank you for calling. How may I help you?”

Teammate 2- “Yeah. My cable is out AGAIN! This service is lousy!”

Teammate 1- “I’m sorry to hear that Sir. Let me take a look at your account and see if I can find a problem.”

Teammate 3- “While you’re at it, how about taking some money off my bill since this crap never works!”

Teammate 1- “Yes Sir. We can credit your account for the time service has been out. I’m not seeing a problem on this end so let’s schedule a technician to come take a look at it.”

Teammate 4- “I’ll tell you what the problem is! Ya’ll got a bunch of idiots sitting over there with your fingers in your butt instead of doing your job!”

Teammate 1- “OK Sir. It looks like we have something available this evening. Will that work for you?”

And it goes on until everyone on the team has had a chance to be both the phone representative and the customer. Sometimes this exercise can get a bit rowdy but it really is a lot of fun and it is a fantastic team building icebreaker.

Icebreakers are great for any type of team.


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