Leadership Inspirations Activities

Survival

Reach consensus as a group about how to “survive” the scenario  

Duration

10-20 minutes

Team Stage

Storming, Norming

Type Of Activity

Experiential Activity

Materials

Paper, pens, list of objects

 

SUMMARY

 

This activity asks groups to rank items in order of importance to their survival in a certain scenario. Participants must be creative and communicative as they try to problem solve, resolve conflict between members, and reach consensus.

 

SET UP

  • Decide on a “survival scenario”. Examples:
    • Your group’s plane has crash landed on a deserted island
    • You woke up in the middle of a zombie apocalypse
    • You must save the world from an alien invasion
  • Create a list of 12-15 items and objects your group can use to survive this scenario. They could be actually useful items or random items, it is up to you. 
    • Examples: Water, rope, matches – or- Trash can, tape, chair
  • You may decide to print a copy of the list to give to each group, or just put the list on a poster paper or whiteboard.
  • Break your group up into smaller groups of 4-5 people each before giving the instructions.

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Pass out a piece of paper and a pen to each small group.
  • Tell them that their objective is to determine the usefulness of each item listed based on the given situation. 
  • They will need to rank the items in order of usefulness (item number 1 is the most useful) and provide their reasoning. 
  • They must reach consensus, meaning that everyone must agree on the final ranking of items.

VARIATIONS

  • Ask participants to rank the items individually before breaking them up into small groups. They can share their rationale before challenging them to reach consensus as a group about what items are most useful. 
  • You can make up a “series of unfortunate events” that may occur at any point during the decision-making process. These events may change groups priorities or render certain items more or less useful depending on the event. 
    • Examples: It starts to storm on the island you are stranded on – or- One of your group members starts to become ill for seemingly no reason.

SAMPLE DEBRIEFING QUESTIONS

What?
  • What was the goal of this activity?
  • Did your group do well? What could have improved?
  • How did your group make decisions? Was it effective or ineffective?
  • How did your group manage conflict that arose?
So What?

Alignment

  • Are we the only ones that define our purpose? What or who influences our purpose?
  • How do we communicate our purpose to new members or people outside of our group?
  • Why is it important that we all understand the purpose of our group/activity/etc.?

Group Dynamics 

  • What are the traits that make someone successful on this team? What are the traits that make someone unsuccessful on this team?
  • What motivates our group?
  • How does our group dynamic affect the way we get work done?

Inclusion & Involvement

  • What does it mean to be inclusive or exclusive?
  • What did we do as a group that was inclusive? That was exclusive/not inclusive?
  • Why is inclusion and involvement important for our group?
Now What?
  • What does this activity tell you about the strengths of your group? The areas for improvement?
  • What’s one commitment each person can make?
  • What are three lessons the group has learned that they can continue to work on?
  • How can we implement these lessons in our school/organization?
  • What can you do differently moving forward?