Making connections activities are commonly used in team building workshops to help team members get to know one another on a more personal level. The goal is to build stronger relationships and trust among team members by sharing personal stories, interests, values, and experiences. This leads to greater understanding, empathy, and connection within the team.
Instructions for the Activity
One simple making connections activity involves having participants share stories related to a specific theme. For example, the facilitator may ask each person to share a story about:
- A proud moment or major accomplishment in their life
- A time they overcame a fear or challenging situation
- The most beautiful place they have visited
- A memorable travel experience
- An impactful person from their childhood
The facilitator gives the group the theme and then has each person take 2-3 minutes to share their story with the group.
Cost and Resources Needed
This activity requires no special equipment or materials, so there is no direct cost involved. A meeting room where participants can sit in a circle and see/hear each other is ideal.
Allow 15-20 minutes for the full activity. 2-3 minutes per participant for sharing their story, plus time for the facilitator to explain the activity and transition between speakers.
Number of Participants
This activity works for any size group. Ideally have at least 6-8 participants to allow for a diversity of stories.
Best Suited For
This activity is well-suited for any intact teams who need to build stronger working relationships, trust, and empathy. It’s especially good for new teams or team members who don’t know each other well.
Role of Facilitator
The facilitator explains the activity, sets the storytelling theme, manages time and flow, and facilitates any discussion or reflection after all stories have been shared. They help create a safe, welcoming environment.
Role of Participants
Participants should be engaged audience members during others’ stories. They should avoid interrupting or critiquing stories. Participants should also share their own story when it’s their turn.
After all stories have been shared, the facilitator can facilitate a group reflection by asking questions like:
- What new things did you learn about your teammates?
- What surprised you or made an impression?
- How can we apply this experience to our work together?
Making connections activities like storytelling enable teams to build stronger relationships. By sharing stories in a safe environment, team members gain empathy and understanding of each other on a deeper level. This leads to greater trust, cohesion, and collaboration within the team.