Facilitation Quick Tips: Meet Three

By Debra Christopher, MSM | February 18, 2015
Director, Professional Learning Systems, ETR

Here’s an activity that gets participants up and moving to meet others and establish their own sense of belonging and presence in the training. It can also boost energy and help enliven the training mix midway through an event.

Title: Meet Three

Purpose:

  • Help participants make connections with others and establish or strengthen their own sense of belonging and purpose in the training.
  • Boost energy.
  • Mix up the group a bit.
  • Clarify expectations.
  • Identify challenges concerning the subject matter of the training.

Best Used:

  • As a warm-up activity early in a training event with participants who are just meeting for the first time or do not know each other well.
  • As an energy boost midway through training to mix the group, cross-share and energize.

Note: The purpose will vary depending on how you choose to use this activity.

Materials:

  • Colorful 3x5 cards, or pieces of paper about that size
  • Visual instructions on butcher paper or a PowerPoint slide
  • Music (optional, but it sure boosts the energy!)

Steps

  1. Pass out a card or piece of paper to each participant, then review the instructions. Use the visual instructions to clarify how participants should set up their cards or paper.
  1. On your card (or paper), number three lines, 1, 2 and 3.
  2. When I give the signal, stand up and look (or roam) around the room.
  3. Make eye contact with someone you don’t know (or don’t know well). Go up to that person and exchange introductions. Write the person’s name down on line number 1.
  4. When you hear the signal again, do this again with another person you don’t know (or don’t know well). That will be person number 2.
  5. When you hear the signal again, do this again with a third person.
  1. Start your music (if you’re using it). Give the signal for the group to start. Take them through three rounds of introductions.
  2. As you finish the activity, encourage everyone to look to their new contacts over the course of the training when doing pair or small group activities or during breaks. Emphasize that one of the most valuable benefits of an in-person training is the opportunity to interact with new colleagues and learn from each other.

Variations

  • Instruct pairs to share something about themselves during their introductions that relates to the content of the training. For example:
  • Share your name and describe the client group you work with.
  • Share your name and your expectation for this training.
  • Share your name and your greatest challenge related to the training topic.
  • Share a strategy you will use based on what you have learned (when the activity is done midway through a training).
  • Use the 1, 2 and 3 partners for creative pairing over the course of the training. This helps move people out of their chairs and creates a healthy energy shift in the room. (Be sure to ask participants to hang on to their lists.)

Share Your Own Ideas

What are some creative ways you would use this activity in a training? Let us know! We’d love to share more variations.

Debra Christopher, MSM, is Director of Professional Learning Systems at ETR. Contact her at debra.christopher@etr.org.

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