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Teambuilders and Icebreakers: How Can We Make Them Suck Less?

Icebreakers and Teambuilders - from “the human knot” to sharing fun facts based on skittles colors, they start off organizational trainings and entertain us at baby showers, we all do them all the time...

…but do we really know why?

What is their actual purpose?

There is a reason when most of us hear a facilitator or meeting leader say, “Ok, let’s start with an icebreaker!” we groan and roll our eyes (if only internally).

Because - the vast majority of the time - these games and activities end up being trite and painfully purposeless.

No one likes an activity for the sake of an activity.

It’s the meeting equivalent of busywork.

And no one likes to have their time and energy wasted.

In my workshop, we explore the original goals of these activities - oh yeah, there’s actually a reason why they were created!

The idea is if we learn the basis upon which icebreakers and teambuilders are built we can actually create meaningful connections between team members rather than doing an activity for the sake of an activity!

So why were they created?

Well, did you know that it takes the average person 50 hours of time with another person to develop a lasting, meaningful relationship?

We’re talking beyond just an acquaintance.

A relationship that has some meaning and depth behind it.

(But not a best friendship, that takes even more hours.)

A relationship that involves quality conversation, trust, personal disclosure, respect, storytelling, care, familiarity, and affinity.

Which are all wonderful things that we want more of in our lives, right?


BUT - 50 hours is kind of a lot of hours.

And we don’t always have that kind of time.

Sometimes we need to bring down people’s walls, and create familiarity, trust, and affinity quicker.

It turns out, there are actually a few social actions that do that.

Things like:

  • Looking silly together

  • Physical Touch

  • Sharing

So the idea is, let’s create some activities using these barrier-breaking social actions to speed up the affinity-creating process.

It’s actually kind of genius.

And when done properly - with intention, explanation, and proper debriefing - these activities can be useful (and even powerful) for a team or organization!

My workshop dives into each of these social actions and how they work.

We explore examples of what these social actions look like at their best and worst in icebreakers - when they are accomplishing the goal of creating meaningful connection and when they are just surface-level activities.

We also discuss and practice some of my favorite activities that create real, meaningful connections.

That way we not only understand the purpose behind them, but we are prepared to put them to practical use at our next gathering!

I am committed to ridding the world of mediocre games and purposeless activities!

Are you ready to break the ice and build our teams better?

Are you ready to join me in my quest to eradicate mediocre activities?!

Then let’s connect!

Set up your FREE consultation HERE so we can chat about your team and their needs.

Want to learn more about working with me and my workshops?

Read and download some core information HERE!

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About Karli

As the owner of Karli Sherman Productions, I am a professional speaker, leadership coach, and executive coach. I help companies, campuses, and individuals to level up and grow through professional development workshops, intensive coaching, and keynote presentations.

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