Networking Activity

While I was teaching and speaking in Australia, many of you expressed an interest in a specific activity that I designed to enhance social networking in any group. I almost always use this activity because everyone enjoys it and it gives everyone a chance to expand their thinking on any given subject.

I tend to use this activity when asking people to reflect on their life values and philosophy, but it can be used whenever you ask people to reflect on a subject. It can also be used with students as an SQ classroom activity.

I think you’ll enjoy the results.

This activity should take about 15 minutes in your classroom:

  1. Choose a subject for the team to reflect on.
  2. Ask them to write down their reflections on a storyboard.
  3. Give them a time limit to do so based on how complex the item is. I usually say 4-5 minutes.  If it’s really complex, I watch until I notice that most of the people in the room are slowing down or have stopped writing.
  4. Explain that, ‘We do better together than we do apart.’
  5. Ask everyone to get a different colored pen than the one they used.
  6. Ask them to stand up.
  7. Explain that this will be a standing only exercise.
  8. Explain that the purpose or goal of the activity is to expand our thinking, our insights and our list of items.
  9. Ask people to, Intend to increase your items and expand your thinking and write down new insights or ideas that you feel you’re aligned with on your own sheet.
  10. Give them two minutes. Say, “Begin”.
  11. At 2 minutes, ring a bell or say, “Time. Thank your partner. And switch. Find another partner”.
  12. After 3 rounds ask the participants, “How many of you expanded your thoughts by a minimum of 15 items?” Or you could reduce this to 10 items or 5 items.
  13. Remind them that the goal is to expand their ideas or insights by a minimum of 15 items and they have one more round to do that.
  14. Give one more round and ask about their numbers again.
  15. Debrief with a discussion on how important it is to share and interact with others. It’s good to learn from everyone you meet as it always expands our thinking. End with a full room share.

I have written these notes into a take away activity you can download it here – Network Activity

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