In this activity, each person comes up with a personal manual.
The manual explains to others in the team how they like to work.
It’s a fun way to encourage open communication in your team.
It helps build team cohesion and to build rapport, as you get to know each other and how you like to work.
When you have a new starter, these manuals are a great tool to use in their induction.
TIME REQUIRED60 mins
TEAM SIZE2 or more
GOOD FORConnected and engaged teams
What you’ll need
If you’re together physically, you’ll need somewhere to meet
If your team is working remotely, you’ll need a phone or video conferencing tool
Scheduling the session
Set up your meeting at a time where you’ll get the best results.
This means thinking about the diverse needs of each of your team members.
Think of things like:
- 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.
Step 1: develop a set of questions
Develop a set of questions to send to your team.
Include things you’d like to understand more about your team.
Write the questions in the first person, as your staff will need to answer each question about themselves.
Here’s some sample questions to get you started:
- What are my preferred hours of work? Am I a morning person or an afternoon person?
- How do I like to be communicated with? How do I like to receive feedback?
- What are my greatest strengths, skills or areas of knowledge?
- What would I like to learn more about in the workplace?
- What sort of work environment do I thrive in?
Step 2: send your questions to your team
Send your questions to your team.
Ask each of them to spend time to write their responses to each question. Set a deadline for when you want this done.
They can answer using words, pictures, song lyrics or any other form of media to add a bit of fun to the activity.
Let your team know you’ll ask them to share their answers.
Step 3: ask everyone to share their manuals
Ask each team member to send around their answers.
You could do this at a meeting, via email or in a group chat.
Or even publish them on a private intranet page.