In this activity, your team will discuss the practices, results and behaviours you expect from each other.

    30 mins
    2 or more
    Diverse and inclusive teams

What you’ll need


If you’re together physically, you’ll need:

  • a blank wall or board
  • markers
  • post-it notes


If your team is working remotely, you’ll need to set up an online tool.

When you choose a tool, think if anyone in your team has accessibility needs and that they’ll be able to easily use it.

Some free tools you can use are:

But this is just a list of examples. There are a lot of tools.

Scheduling the session

Set up your meeting at a time where you’ll get the best results.

This means to think about the diverse needs of each of your team members.

Think of things like this:

  • Do some people work better earlier or later in the day?
  • Does anyone have kids or caring responsibilities that mean they need to start late or leave early?
  • Is there a time to avoid due to other work commitments?

How to run the activity

This a rough schedule of how you can run the session.

The key thing is to set a timer for each section of your session and stick to each time.

When people have a limited time to think, they’ll focus on the things that matter to them the most.

Before you start

At the top of your workspace, write ‘Mutual expectations’ as your heading.

Under this heading, write these two questions:

  • What sort of environment would allow you to do your best work?
  • How would you like to interact with your fellow team members?

These are just questions to kick start your thinking.

Encourage teams to think broadly about what mutual expectations mean to them.

Acknowledge country (20 seconds)

Always acknowledge the traditional owners before you start.

It shows your respect for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people.

Set the scene (2 minutes)

Explain that the purpose of this activity is to come to a mutual understanding of how members of the team will interact and treat each other.

Brainstorm ideas (10 minutes)

Give each team member a pack of post-it notes.

Ask them to write down what expectations they’d like the team to abide by.

Ask each person to write down one idea per post-it note.

There’s no limit to how many ideas everyone can write down.

Group ideas (5 minutes)

Go around to each person and ask them to start sticking their post it notes to your workspace.

As each person puts their post-it notes on the wall, ask them to group similar ideas together.

Discuss and summarise ideas (15 minutes)

As a team, discuss your groups of ideas and summarise these into an expectation the team can hold each other to.

Encourage your team to speak about why their idea is important to them or how it may affect their experience in the workplace.

As the group comes to an agreement, confirm the expectation with the team.

As a people manager, you want to be clear on what you agree to with your team. Don’t leave this open to interpretation.

If there’s disagreement, either spend more time discussing until you come to an agreement. Or, put the idea aside and come back to it outside of this activity.

Agree on action items (5 minutes)

Come up with a list of actions you can commit to as a people manager, so you can turn your team’s expectations into reality.

Make sure your team agrees on the expectations and the actions.

After the activity

Send a copy of the expectations and actions to your team.

If in the future someone isn’t acting in-line with the expectations your team agreed to, refer them to the outputs of this activity.