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Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Assemble a Story

For everything you wanted to know on building leadership and management, refer Shyam Bhatawdekar’s website:
(Refer our High Quality Management Encyclopedia “Management Universe” at:

It is a seemingly very simple yet pretty loaded individual and group management exercise. It can be used by you as a program facilitator or workshop leader as an icebreaker and particularly for your sessions on creativity, creative thinking, leadership, team work and team building.

Get the participants of your program to sit on the chairs kept in a circular shape in your seminar room or even outdoors. Create a relaxed environment and then brief the participants.

Tell them that one person in group will start out by telling to rest of the participants a story but he can speak only one complete sentence of his story at a time. As he finishes his first sentence, the person sitting next to him will extend first person’s story’s first sentence by adding to it one more sentence from his side. Then the third person takes over and adds one more sentence to construct the further part of the story. Thus every participant will keep adding his one sentence to the story that gets formed till his turn comes. This goes on and on till you feel that it’s time to conclude the exercise. You can check up with participants if they will still like to continue.

To begin the exercise you can coax the participants to volunteer to give a kick start to the story. Let some initiators emerge this way and then you can choose one of them to start telling the first sentence of the story.

After the participants declare that they are finished with story formulation or you assess that it's time to conclude, request the participants to share their experiences in tackling this exercise. Where did they miss out and where they did brilliantly? Was it a simple exercise or a difficult one? Did it tax their brains- in what ways?

Give your observations, analysis and inputs.

You can repeat this exercise by giving to entire group of participants around 10 minutes to discuss among themselves before they start making and telling another story in the manner described earlier. During these given 10 minutes they can work out an outline of a different story they wish to tell as a group but the participants are not allowed to write down anything. Then allow each participant to speak out his one sentence turn by turn to narrate the complete story the way they had thought of.

After this second round of story telling, get the participants once again to share their experiences and to tell you the differences between the first round and the second round of story formation and story telling.

Facilitate their discussions with your inputs and wrap up the session.

(As a variant, you may ask the participants to assemble a poem also; that will also be as much fun).

Get Hold of the Related Books
You can order the following books on "management games and icebreakers" as printed books and eBooks from Amazon online:
  1. Classic Management Games, Exercises, Energizers and Icebreakers
  2. Classic Management Games, Exercises, Energizers and Icebreakers (Volume 2)
  3. Classic Team Building Games, Exercises, Energizers and Icebreakers
  4. 101 Classic Management Games, Exercises, Energizers and Icebreakers
Related Reading: (Repository of a large number of articles in management and leadership): and

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