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How can I energise a session around what’s working & what’s not working


Suggestions on how to deliver a session creating fun and improved ways of working across two functions. Time limit is 2 hours max, and consists of 8 people.
Louise Smith

3 Responses

  1. Go there first
    Hi Louise
    Without more specific information as to what you are doing at the moment, it is difficult to give specific advice.

    Here are some things to think about:
    1) What is your ‘mental state’ when people arrive and the session starts?
    2) Why are they there – because they have to or want to?
    3) Do you have a fixed programme or can they develop the agenda in the first 15 minutes?
    4) What is ‘fun’ to your participants?

    Eight people is at the low end and will take some energy on your behalf to create momentum.

    Have you considered doing an exercise like red/blue (prisoners dilemma) to show the impact of working independently and then the benefits of working to a common goal and supporting each other?

    You can access versions of this from's_dilemma or


  2. How can I energise a session around what’s working & what’s not
    I am not sure if it is any help, but would the fish film help at all? I only saw it once, long ago, but remember it was quite powerful at enjoying and making the most out of what you do.

    Have a look at


  3. Use a ball
    If the situation is likely to get fraught, there is an idea that can be borrowed from the some of the native Americans. They use a stone in the discussions: whoever is holding the stone speaks, no-one else may speak until that person passes the stone on. I suggest a ball instead. Because we are culturally unaccustomed to the principle, you might consider introducing a few rules, such as each person may only hold the ball for 2 minutes at a time, and they choose to whom to pass the ball, but it must be someone from the other team.

    Once everyone has stated their view of the situation, you could repeat the exercise, this time with each person suggesting a solution, although, by this time, you might find that they are able to brainstorm in a more familiar manner without mishap!


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