I need ideas for my team to have some creative fun at work. Have you used anything in the past that worked well? – Tegan in Costa Mesa, California
There is nothing like adding an element of creative fun to your work schedule to build teamwork, reframe your mindset, get your bodies moving, and re-energize. We all know the value of taking a break, even when we think we are too jammed. It gives our bodies and minds precious time to re-set. Adding the elements of lively ingenuity with a team activity will strengthen your interpersonal connections and shake out the doldrums.
Here is an idea I’ve used before and that works anywhere: a racing hack. When you have good weather and a protected parking lot, you can take this outside to enjoy the added bonus of fresh air. We each have little self-propelling toy race cars and a set of traffic cones. It takes only 2 minutes to set up the track. For 15 minutes we cheer, have a blast blowing off steam, and shake up whatever we were doing.
If you need to stay indoors, a warehouse floor, loading dock, lunchroom, or hallway would make a good substitute for the parking lot. Everything works the same. The key here is to be considerate of other departments and co-workers. You can also invite them to join in!
My second racing hack is used primarily indoors. I imagine you could take it out to the parking lot, but we never have. A warehouse floor or long hallway are ideal. Using two rolling chairs and our traffic cones, we create an indoor racetrack. Two at a time, we draw lots to race each other while seated in the chairs and pushing backwards. It’s hysterical and crossing the finish line can become a feat of inventiveness.
If you have the space, you can have teams push the chairs down the track. Draw names for your racing crews. This way you mix up who is paired up, and you are creating an opportunity for your team members to partner with someone new, and work together for the win.
I hope your work culture and environment are supportive of this type of out-of-the-box thinking. Check with management for the thumbs-up, and be sure to have ground rules in place to keep the activity positive and healthy. Your objective is innovative disruption: an exercise to come together and leave with a fresh approach.
By taking the racing break, we come back fresh and ready to tackle the rest of the day and finish out strong. We have fun and share a laugh as a team, encouraging one another along the makeshift courses. Everyone wins.
Lynn Whitbeck is the co-founder and President of Petite2Queen. She is focused on identifying and evaluating opportunities for women at work, helping them define their personal roadmap. She dedicates herself to delivering tools and insights, embracing visualization of the big picture, and identifying and implementing the minutiae of detail. Lynn aims to share lessons learned along her journey and enable positive uplift for women.