Adventure Associates

Work is an Adventure... Be Prepared!

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Build a Boat Team Building Sample Agenda


Our lead facilitator provides a brief overview of what the group can expect. Depending on the level of difficulty you’re seeking for your group, we either provide the teams with clues about the product's construction or we let the teams come up with their own designs. (approximately 10 minutes)

Team Roles & Goals

Teams discuss the process goals that they want to meet: for example, communicate clearly and concisely, garner the ideas of all participants, or utilize skills and talents from everyone on the team. Then they establish roles. Establishing roles lends insight into workplace dynamics and can set the stage for a meaningful team building experience. We encourage participants to consider both process roles and task roles. Who will be the designer? Who will do the drawings? Who steer the vessel? Who is good at collaborating and reaching consensus? Who enjoys giving presentations and wants to take responsibility for that? (approximately 20 minutes)

Develop Blueprints

The teams are allowed to examine their building materials at this stage: cardboard, PVC pipe, saws, plastic sheeting, duct tape, etc. 16 years and thousands of boats later, we are constantly amazed by the diversity and creativity of our clients' designs. (approximately 30 minutes)


During the construction phase, teams have a lot to consider: how maneuverable is this vessel? How does an individual’s center of gravity affect the boat? How much water does our boat displace…and how much should it!? We sometimes set up a midpoint "quality circle" meeting so representatives from each team can share design ideas and materials. Teams may share or exchange materials as necessary. (approximately 90-120 minutes)


Teams prepare a sales and marketing presentation to unveil their finished product. Not only do they describe the features of their boat, but they detail the team processes that allowed them to build it: collaboration, decision-making, communication, etc. The presentations are often fun and light-hearted, sometimes slightly competitive, but always enjoyable preludes to the launch. (approximately 15 minutes)


Will the elected pilot be able to navigate the watercraft from point A to point B? Team members launch their watercrafts to find out. Some teams have set up a mini-regatta to add a competitive edge. (approximately 15 minutes)

Group Discussion

All teams reconvene to talk about their experiences during the Build a Boat program. How did they make decisions together? Who led the design phase? Who led the construction phase? Is this indicative of work relationships? What new skills and approaches will they employ upon returning to the workplace? (approximately 15 minutes)

Build a Boat Photo Gallery