Leaders who know their employees engage with them better and influence them easily. They are also able to come up with policies and work processes that support the employees in achieving the company’s goals while achieving their personal goals and visions.
Since employees may be reserved, games and fun activities are creative ways to get them to open up. Below are 4 icebreaker games to get to know your employees.
- Birth Map
The birth map can be a great icebreaker to get the energy going at the beginning of a meeting and to get to know where your employees come from. Place a map and some pins on a board or table near the entrance of the conference room or meeting area. Then, ask the employees to pick a pin as they come in and place it on where they grew up.
You can begin or conclude the meeting by mentioning a location and asking people who grew up in that area to stand up. It will help the employees appreciate their diversity. It also offers an opportunity for people who grew up in the same or neighboring areas to connect.
- Two Truths and One Lie
This is a classic icebreaker game that is fun and creative. Ask each employee to say three things. Of the three, two are true, and one is a lie. The rest of the team should attempt to identify the truths and the lie. The employee will then confirm the truths and establish the lie.
- Whodunit (Who is it)?
If you have a small team, ask each employee to write down something interesting they have ever done (or about themselves) and put it in a hat or basket. If you have a larger team, divide the employees into groups and provide a hat for each group.
Once everyone has put in their notes, the employees will take turns to each draw a note and read it out. The reader will read what is on the note and try to guess who did it. After a few guesses, ask the employee who did it to identify themselves.
- Hot Seat
This one can be intimidating, but it is a fun opportunity to learn about each other if the employees warm up to it.
Have a seat set up in front of the room and select one of the employees to sit on it. Other employees will take turns asking the person on the hot seat a question each. The only rule of the game is not to ask questions that are too personal.
Depending on how much time you have and the number of employees, you can have all employees take turns on the hot seat. Or select one person to be on the hot seat for each meeting until everyone has had a chance to be on the hot seat.
Remember, these icebreakers should not feel like a project where employees have to perform. They should be light and fun. Keep in mind that while some employees are social butterflies and will participate with ease, others are reserved, and it will take them a bit of time to warm up to it.