Purpose: To demonstrate teamwork, leadership and communications.
Group Size: 7 and up. Groups should be 7 to 10 people. Form as many groups as needed.
Materials Needed: 2 blindfolds
- Tell participants the following:
- The object is to untangle yourselves to form one complete circle (facing in or out).
- Handholds may not be broken, but may pivot as the untangling proceeds.
- You have 15 minutes to complete the task.
- Two of the participants must be blindfolded.
- Ask participants to do the following:
- Choose and blindfold two people.
- Stand in a tight circle facing the center.
- Each person, take the hand of someone across the circle from you.
- With your other hand, take the hand of someone different across the circle from you.
- Test to see that they are set up properly by doing a "squeeze test":
- Have someone squeeze one of the hands they are holding.
- Each recipient of a squeeze must pass it on with their other hand.
- To pass the test, each person should have been a squeezer and a squeezee...and the squeeze should end up back at the person who started it.
- If these conditions are not met, redo the hand grasp and test until the group passes the test.
When ready, the team may start.
What to Observe:
- How does their strategy develop - time to plan vs. action?
- Do they jump into action or pause to get bearings?
- Does leadership emerge in one person throughout or does it move around?
- How well are they listening to each other?
- What are the levels of celebration/frustration?
- How are the "blind" persons included/excluded?
- How did you feel?
- How would you describe the leadership?
- Was the leadership supported?
- How would you evaluate the strategies you came up with?
- What contributed to the development of ideas?
- What got in the way?
- How was listening?
- How was participation?
- If you were sighted, how did you feel about the unsighted people?
- If you were unsighted, how did you feel about what you were being asked to do?
- What assets of the unsighted people were being utilized?
- How can you apply this to work?
Potential learning points:
- It takes a team to solve a problem.
- Leadership often emerges according to who has the best view of the process at any given time.
- Creative idea generation requires an environment of listening and receptivity in a group.
- There are always people in the team who have less information, or don't know what's going on, yet they still are needed.
Variation: One pair of hands may be broken one time.