Four Magic Letters
A fun way to experiment communication and team collaboration within project teams, with an alphabet based game
An experiential activity using the alphabet, but with a little twist – participants are asked to form only 4-letter words (as in Four Magic Letters :)), as many as possible in 2-minute rounds. For this to happen, they will have to come up with a strategy and proper approaches, while revealing key aspects of team collaboration and change management.
- Introduce the activity to the participants (rules, number of tiles, number of rounds, time per rounds etc) and split into teams.
- Mention the fact that the activity is not about competing against the other teams.
- Join each team and provide the activity link.
- In the first planning phase (5 minutes), the teams practice working with the virtual alphabet letters, define their strategy, roles, etc. At the end of this planning phase, they provide the facilitator with an estimate of number of 4-magic letter words they will create in the 2-minute round (execution phase). Once the planning phase is completed, the letters are put back into the set.
- During the execution phase, the team members focus on matching/exceeding the estimate.
- The second round of planning (5 minutes) focuses on optimizing the results. At the end of this planning phase, they provide the facilitator with an estimate of number of words they will create in the next 2-minute round (execution phase). Once the planning phase is completed, the letters are put back into the set.
- After the second round of execution takes place, the third and final round of execution (2 minutes) will immediately take place. There won’t be a third planning phase.
- The facilitator may ask the following questions:
- How satisfied are you with the results?
- What helped you reach these results?
- Who took the leadership in your team?
- What challenges did you face during this activity? What or who helped you overcome them?
- Who came up with a great idea and you would like to give thanks for?
- If you were to do this all over again, what would you do differently to improve the results?
- What resemblances do you see with what happens at work?
Interesting variations can be found using different durations, number of rounds, number of participants. Having a nominated observer may add a lot of insights.
This activity follows activity type guide from CARTA
Play in Colltrain
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