Have some fun with your virtual remote teams while helping them to develop better problem solving skills with this lateral thinking virtual team building activity. Note: This virtual team building activity can be adapted to the size of your virtual team, the amount of time you have available and the location of your various remote workers.
When preparing for the team building activity, consider these questions presented by Paul Sloane in his book The Leader’s Guide to Lateral Thinking Skills: Unlocking the Creativity and Innovation in You and Your Team. “How can you energize people to see problems not as obstacles to success but as opportunities for innovation? What practical techniques can you use in your everyday work to lead by example, to inspire and to motivate people around you to become more creative?”
Lateral Thinking Virtual Team Building Activity
- Select a suitable lateral thinking puzzle, challenge or problem for the virtual team to tackle. Paul Sloane, author of The Leader’s Guide to Lateral Thinking Skills: Unlocking the Creativity and Innovation in You and Your Team has some excellent lateral thinking puzzles along with the right advice on how to get the most out of the sessions with your team.
- Explain the purpose of the activity to the virtual team. You want this to be an opportunity for the team to interact together in a fun and creative way, while developing their lateral thinking skills. The ultimate goal is to help the virtual team to work together to achieve the very best solutions to problems as well as to achieve their goals in an inspiring and creative way.
- Present the challenge to the team. The puzzle, challenge or problem is presented to the virtual team via an online meeting room, or your usual virtual team collaboration platform (teams can be divided into smaller remote teams depending on the number of virtual workers involved in the virtual team building activity). The team members work together using online communication tools to solve the problem. Virtual teams working from remote locations will use their everyday virtual working communication tools to discuss solutions to the problem.
- Once the activity has been completed conduct a debrief session with your team. Talk about the solutions presented, how the team communicated together, what challenges they faced in coming to a solution, how communication could have been improved, what the team discovered about each other from the session, how the lateral thinking skills used during the virtual team building activity could be directly applied to the virtual team’s every-day working environment.
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