Adventure Associates

Work is an Adventure... Be Prepared!

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Build a Bridge Team Building Sample Agenda

Introduction

Our lead facilitator provides a brief overview of what the group can expect, the parameters of the building assignment and guidelines for successful completion. (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 will handle signage? Who is good at collaborating and reaching consensus? Who enjoys giving presentations and wants to take responsibility for that? (approximately 20 minutes)

Develop Blueprints

Each team conducts its own round table discussion to develop blueprints. Group planning is fascinating to experience as team dynamics emerge. Thwarted structural engineers have the opportunity to become an “expert leader,” and armchair physicists get to experiment with a variety of creative design concepts. The teams are allowed to examine their building materials at this stage: foam core, dowel rods, pen knives, glue, straws, construction paper, etc. (approximately 30 minutes)

Construction

During the construction phase, teams have only two simulated phone calls, e-mails and simulated faxes. Teams must be strategic about the content, the timing and the medium of communications. Time is limited and even the best planning can’t prepare a team for every eventuality. Participants have to make decisions on the fly, sometimes without the input of the other half of their team. (approximately 90-120 minutes)

Join Bridges

The anticipation at this stage is palpable as the participants wonder: Can we get the two halves to connect? Will they match? How much weight will the bridge support? Teams are given only a few minutes to connect the halves. Depending on the level of difficulty your group is seeking, we’ll put restrictions on the materials that can be used to join the halves. (approximately 10 minutes)

Presentations

Teams prepare a sales and marketing presentation to unveil their finished product. Not only do they describe the features of their bridge, but they detail the team processes that allowed them to build the prototype: collaboration, decision-making, communication, etc. Past participants have commented that seeing what other teams did gave them insight into their own behaviors. (approximately 15 minutes)

Group Discussion

All teams reconvene to talk about their experiences during the Build a Bridge adventure. We address: How they organized around the tasks? How did the two “sides” communicate throughout the construction phase? What lessons can they take back to the work environment? Who fulfilled leadership roles? (approximately 20 minutes)

Build a Bridge Photo Gallery

All Sample Agendas