Are you in search of printable team building activities for work?
If you are a busy leader, you might want some helpful exercises for team meetings or training sessions.
In this article, let’s see 10 printable team building games that can conduct with your employees.
These activities are short and easy to execute. Moreover, each activity consists of step-by-step instructions and debrief. So, select the activity you like and print it.
10 Printable Team Building Activities for Work
Here is a list of 10 printable activities that you can use with your teams.
#1. Hot Potato
Learning Outcome: Trust building, communication, and team coordination.
In this activity, teams should keep an inflated balloon in the air as long as possible without using their hands.
Time: You decide
Materials: Inflated Balloon
Participants: Less than 10 individuals per group
• Split the participants into small groups.
• Give each group an inflated balloon.
• Groups should stand in a circle and keep the balloon in the air without using their hands.
• The group that lasts the longest will win this game.
During debrief, figure out what strategies were used to keep the balloon in the air. Discuss the importance of communication, trust building, and team coordination within a group.
#2. The Globe Game
Learning Outcome: Cultural understanding, and team collaboration.
In this activity, employees explore different cultures by spinning a globe and answering questions about several countries.
Time: 10-15 minutes
Materials: A globe or world map
Participants: 4-8 people per group
• Provide a globe or world map to each group.
• Ask them to spin the globe and answer questions about different countries that they land on such as their capital, language, currency, etc.
• Give teams some time to answer as many questions as they can.
• Once the time is up, have each group review their answers with other groups.
Discuss how cultural knowledge and understanding can help with global business operations. Talk about the importance of group collaboration in the workplace.
#3. Surprising Fact
Learning Outcome: Break the ice, get to know each other, and diversity, equity, & inclusion
This activity is a stimulating way to get your staff to appreciate differences in their coworkers.
Time: You decide
Materials: Paper and pens
Participants: Exactly 2 members in a group
• Split the participants into groups of 2 members each.
• Have them spend some time getting to know each other by asking personal, specific questions.
• Each person should share what they learned about their partners that surprised them.
Discuss the importance of understanding and appreciating differences. Talk about diversity, equity & inclusion, and how it’s beneficial to the workplace.
#4. Merging Game
Learning Outcome: Get to know each other, develop team identity, and trust building
This activity, Merging Game, encourages collaboration and helps groups to come up with shared values.
Time: 15-20 minutes
Materials: Multiple index cards
Participants: Groups of 2 to 5 people
• Provide multiple index cards to each group.
• Instruct each group member to write one personal value on a card secretly.
• Now, ask them to share their value with the group.
• Then, the group members can come up with a list of values for their group.
During the debriefing, analyze how the groups worked together to come up with a list of shared values. Highlight the importance of developing a team identity and building trust.
#5. Word Association
Learning Outcome: Team collaboration, and critical thinking.
In this exercise, teams come up with words that are associated with a given word.
Time: 5-10 minutes
Materials: Pen and paper or whiteboard/marker
Participants: 4-7 people in a group
• Provide the groups with a given word such as ‘summer’ and give them some time to come up with words that are associated with it.
• Examples of words associated with the word ‘summer’ include beach, sun, holidays, BBQs, etc.
• Groups can work together to come up with a list.
• Finally, they can compare their lists with other groups to see who had the most associated words.
During the debrief, analyze how well each group collaborated to come up with the most associated words. Highlight the importance of critical thinking and brainstorming within a group.
#6. Telephone Game
Learning Outcome: Effective communication and active listening.
This classic game requires teams to pass a message from one person to the next.
Time: 10 minutes
Participants: Groups of 4-10 members
• Provide each team with a word or sentence they have to remember and pass on.
• Ask them to form a line and start passing the message from one person to the next.
• The last person in line should share what they heard with everyone else.
• Compare the phrase with the original to see how much it changed.
During the debrief, analyze how well each team worked together and communicated in order to pass on the message. Identify any areas of improvement for communication.
#7. Forward or Backward Game
Learning Outcome: Adaptability, and change management
This game aims to assess people’s reactions toward change. Here employees will react to specific words by moving either forward or backward, corresponding to positive or negative responses.
Time: 5-10 minutes
Materials: A list of change-related words
Participants: Any number of individuals per group
• Prepare a list of change-related words; for example, alteration, conversion, transition, etc.
• Have each team form straight lines shoulder to shoulder.
• Call out one word at a time.
• Let the team members move forward if the word they hear induces a positive response and move backward for a negative response.
Use the results of this game to figure out how your employees respond to change. Discuss the importance of adapting to changes in a work setting.
#8. Desert Island
Learning Outcome: Problem solving and decision making
This exercise requires employees to think critically in order to survive in the desert.
Time: 10 minutes
Materials: Prepare a list of around 10 items
Participants: Groups of 2-6 people
• Ask the groups to assume they are stranded in a desert.
• Provide the list of items; for example, 10 liters of water, a compass, a first aid box, etc.
• Instruct them to have a discussion with their group and choose only 3 items from the list for survival.
• Each group must explain which items they chose and why.
During the debrief, figure out how effectively the group worked together while making decisions and solving problems. Analyze the different approaches they used to come up with the final solution.
#9. Building a Tower
Learning Outcome: Team collaboration, creative thinking, and planning
In this activity, teams build the tallest tower with a given set of materials.
Time: You decide
Materials: Paper clips, straws, rubber bands, etc.
Participants: 4-10 people in a group
• Give each group some supplies like paper clips, straws, rubber bands, etc.
• Ask them to build the tallest tower within a certain time frame.
• Once the time is up, have each team measure their towers and share the results.
• Finally, award the team with the tallest tower.
Figure out how the teams plan and collaborate to achieve the best result. Discuss the difficulties the teams faced and how they overcame them.
#10. Picture It!
Learning Outcome: Effective communication, and creative thinking.
In this activity, teams come up with creative stories or scenes based on given photos.
Time: You decide
Materials: Various photos or images
Participants: 4-10 members in a group
• Provide each team with an image that contains a story; or example, a photo of someone playing basketball.
• Ask them to create stories based on the given image.
• Invite them to present their stories in front of the other teams.
• Award the team that presented the most creative story.
Discuss how effective communication and creative thinking played a role in completing this activity. Analyze how team members utilized their skills to come up with unique stories.
Want Some Unique Team Building Exercises?
If you want some unique team building exercises that you can conduct anywhere and anytime, you can get my new e-book:
Team building activities can help bring people together and foster collaboration. So, take your pick from these 10 printable activities and have a fun time while working on productive skills. Make sure to debrief afterward in order to unlock the full potential of each activity.
FAQ: Printable Team Building Activities for Work
You might have these questions in mind.
What are the benefits of team building exercises?
Team building exercises help strengthen bonds, promote collaboration, and build trust. Additionally, they can also help boost morale and productivity.
How long should a team building activity last?
Most activities would last around 15 minutes to 1 hour. Before going with an activity, make sure that you check its duration.
How many participants can take part in a team building game?
It depends on the game. To effectively manage an activity, you can split your participants into small teams.
How do I debrief after a team building activity?
A debrief session should focus on the process of the activity, rather than the outcome. During debriefing, give employees time to share their thoughts, while being mindful of any emotions that may be present. This helps them to reflect on their experiences and discuss the lessons learned.