The Broken Email Activity

Communication is the key to all successful relationships whether in the family, community, at work or with customers.

Telling employees they need to communicate should be a no-brainer. They either do it or they don't.  But the simplest of things often trip us up and then the team needs a little reminder about improving the communication between their colleagues or customers.

This simple activity is designed to help improve communication awareness and can be used in several situations during training courses, team meetings, breakout sessions, and workshops.

The original idea for this activity comes from Teampedia.


  • To be the first team to correctly reproduce the "email".
  • To open up discussions around communication and collaboration.

Group Size

  • Medium to large.
  • Minimum of 5 people.


Table, Paper, Pens or Markers, Simple Images

Set Up

On a table, place as many pieces of paper with a pen as you have teams. Have pre-made simple images or "emails" made...

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Line Up, Line Up - Get Yourselves Sorted Out

free activities Jun 07, 2018

This is a short and simple (can be made more difficult) group challenge that asks participants to arrange themselves in a line according to certain criteria.

These criteria can be anything you choose for fun such as height or colour of shoes. But they have to arrange themselves without speaking to each other.

This energiser not only gets the blood flowing but it also promotes non-verbal communication and teamwork.

Use simple versions in early stages of group development and more creative and complex ones to challenge more established groups or teams.

Step 1

Give the group the task of lining-up in order of height (tallest-shortest) without talking or making any non-verbal sounds.

Step 2

Repeat the challenge two or three times with more challenging tasks that get progressively more difficult. For example:

  • Line up by hair color or eye color (lightest-darkest)
  •  Line up by date of birth (oldest-youngest)
  •  Line up by where you were born (farthest-closest)
  • ...
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The Most Powerful Activity you Can Use to Demonstrate Shared Vision

A few years ago, I met with the MD of John Lewis's flagship store on Oxford Street, London. Sales were slipping and the store was lacking in other key areas including the customer experience. My partner and I were invited to the store to discuss ways to shake things up across the business and to lead some workshops for management and store partners (the term they use for employees). In his words "I need to reinvigorate the store!" It was the perfect word to describe what was needed.

Reinvigorating Your Business

Reinvigorate. It sounds powerful, earthy and energetic. It's not a word you often hear used in business nowadays but it's the perfect antidote to a business that is failing or underperforming.

When you re-invigorate your business you fill it with life and energy. You can energize teams, sales, customer experiences, shareholder value and more when you choose to reinvigorate your business.

In our experience, most business owners or department heads know where they are...

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Change Your Scenery and Understand What's Going On in Your CEX

c.e.x free activities Nov 30, 2017

If you have ever moved house or changed workplaces you'll know how much more sensitive you are to your surroundings. You become heightened and sensitised to new experiences and stimuli around you.

Such experiences provide you with rich and colourful inputs that rapidly help you become aware of your new surroundings and how to adapt to your new setting.

We can take this phenomenon and apply it to our business world by deliberately changing our environment. It's a quick and easy way to begin shifting our mindset.

If you work in a business where you rarely get out of your office then this will really help you understand what's going on in your business.

I'll give you an example and then you can apply it to your own situation. For the sake of the example let's imagine you work in the training department for a large fashion brand and your own stores and franchises across the country.

Here are the steps to follow.

Step 1

You visit several of your stores and ask a...

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My Shoe Represents How I Feel About My Role in Our Team

free activities teams Nov 22, 2017

We've used this activity many times with teams to help them understand the landscape they work within may not be quite like they perceive it to be. The team landscape is for ever changing and evolving and not always toward star performance. It can evolve for the worse as well as for the better.


You can't put your shoes on, then your socks on. That's a fact. You can't do this anymore than you can change perceptions until you first establish what the current view is.


Individuals may often feel like outsiders, not connecting their contribution to the bigger goals of their team. This can lead to frustration, a sense of alienation and not wanting to contribute above and beyond.

Try this activity with your team next time you want to develop a better understanding and awareness of what lies within the team landscape. It will cost you no more than an hour of your time and the price of some rope. A small investment with big returns!

Activity Aims

The aims of the activity...

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How Many Ways Can You Tie Shoe Laces?

Activity Aim

The aim of this activity is to get participants to think about how routine many of their choices are when it comes to offering customers solutions to problems and how by being creative they may be able to offer an alternative solution. The activity can also be used wherever you want to challenge people's ideas about the norm and what they have become accustomed to.


Participants consider how many different ways they think there are to lace a shoe with 12 eyelets (6 per side).

Setting Up the Activity

  1. It's important that you stress a 12 eyelet shoe so either have one on hand or use the image at the top of this post. This is because the answer you give as the solution to the activity is based on calculating a formula using 12 eyelets.
  2. Ask participants to work in pairs or individually.
  3. Give them 5 minutes to consider their answer.
  4. Ask each person or pair for their answer and then reveal the correct answer which is 43,200! For...
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If Your Business Were a Shoe, What Would It Be?

free activities Oct 30, 2017

Activity Aim

The aim of this activity is to allow participants an opportunity to discuss how they see their business, department, team or other issues based upon using a shoe as a metaphor. We all wear shoes so this activity can easily be related to by every participant.


Participants should choose a shoe that they believe represents their business, department or team based upon their interpretation of how they see the shoe they choose, its characteristics and how these relate to their business. You can interchange the focus word to represent the issues under discussion.

For example, a Nike trainer is chosen because it represents the team's agile response to customer enquiries, it's stylish and contemporary, it's relaxing to be in and does what is expected of it.

Setting Up the Activity

  1. Provide images of various types and styles of shoes and other footwear. I suggest a selection of between 12 and 20. Either print these off and hand them out, stick them to a...
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