Team Building games and activities for Teams with Change Management Issues

Changes in the management side will always be constant in a workplace since there will always be promotions and movement on the company hierarchy. These type of changes means that the company is growing, and that progress is evident on these people who made their way to the top through continuous hard work that they dedicate to the company.

However, these changes are not always welcome to everyone. There will be a number of people who will try to exert their resistance to these changes which could manifest in low performance, poor attendance, and the worst-case scenario could be a mass resignation just to express how upset they were.

These scenarios are already common for leaders and they should be well equipped with several tips and tricks to handle the team while transitioning and adapting to these changes.

Here are some of the suggested activities you can do to help the team cope up and come to terms with the changes around them

1.    Cross Your Arms

One way of presenting the change to your team is to have an exercise that will let them understand how these changes are going to affect them.  Follow the process below to do this.

  1. Gather the team into one single group.
  2. Discuss all the coming changes that they will have to adjust from
  3. Ask them to cross their arms like the way they do when they are bored or waiting.
  4. Ask them to reverse the manner of how their arms are crossed.

Gather their feedback as to how they felt when they were prompted to change the way they usually cross their arms. Expand your discussion of the coming change and reflect from these discussions as to how it felt for them to work with the change. In this way, the team will have more tolerance with the change in eventually reach resiliency.

2.    The Four P’s

This activity will allow your team to broaden their perspective and change their view about the changes. They will be able to understand what the implications could be if these changes are not happening, and the possible consequences if they won’t allow adaptability to happen in the way they do their jobs. Prepare a large whiteboard or paper and create a cross in the centre to divide the page into four. Name each section as Project, Purpose, Particulars, and lastly People. Divide your team into four groups and assign each of the P’s to them. Create a scenario to the team related to changes in the management and process, an example could be changed on their assigned team leaders to make it more personal for them.  Allow at least 15minutes for them to discuss and come up with ideas.

  • Project

The group should be able to discuss projections of these changes, what type of changes they are dealing with and future changes that will need to happen for the betterment of the company

  • Purpose

This is where the reason of the changes is discussed, what are the benefits that they can get if their team leader is changed for someone else, will it be able to improve performance and productivity and all other purposes that they can think of.

  • Particulars

This discussion concentrates on the details of the changes, like changes in scheduling, processes, house rules, approval of requests and anything else.

  • People

The group should be able to identify what are the changes that need to be done on the people on the way they adopt these changes and what could be the possible things they can contribute make these transitions flawless for everyone.

After the presentation of each group, create a healthy discussion about these changes and gauge how much of these did they understood and accepted.

3.    Can Do Company

These change management exercise will allow your team to work with a diversity of ideas from everyone. What you will do is, split the team into at least four with 3 participants in each group and let them pretend that they are different departments of a fruit juice company. Assign this group into major departments of an organization like

Planning – Plans the actual version of the product that will be released including the details that makes it different from the current market competitors.

Designing– This team will need to draft the best design in logo, packaging and all necessary aesthetics to make the product stand out.

Manufacturing- This team will have to identify the best costing deal to manufacture the product and make sure to meet the demands.

Marketing-  This team is assigned in marketing the product, making sales, and profit for the company.

After the presentation of ideas, shuffle some of the team members from another department and give them another 5 minutes to improve their ideas and create another discussion until all members are shuffled altogether fulfilled multiple department roles.

After the activity, huddle the team and let them share their version of experience from the exercise and as to how they are able to adapt to the continuous changes in roles and people that they will need to work with. This type of activity will improve the tolerance of your team when it comes to handling changes in management and even on company processes

4.    Change Your Look

This is a fun and quick icebreaker for change issues. Pair up your team members, let them decide which of them is the observer and the other will be the “changer”. Follow these steps below to run the activity.

  1. Let each of the pairs face each other
  2. The assigned observer should be given 10 seconds to assess their partners before being blindfolded
  3. Ask the “changer” to create minor changes on their appearance like moving their watch on the other wrist flipping their hair on the opposite side, removing a jewellery or anything that can think of. Give them 30 seconds to complete the changes before removing the blindfold of the observer
  4. Ask the observer what re the change or changes they have noticed from their partners.
  5. Repeat these steps giving the changer lesser time to change. Until none of the can perform changes anymore.

Discuss to the team the purpose of the activity in relation to adaptability to changes. Ask them what are the things they identified that makes change hard, what makes people resist to changes and what are the things they could do to make accept changes easier. This will allow your team to ponder these thoughts regarding changes in the management and company.

5.    Bouncing Back

This is a simple activity that shows how changes should be dealt with.  You will need to prepare a ball to run this exercise and gather the team to form a circle. Have them pass the ball to each other randomly making sure that the ball hits the ground before it bounces to the receiving person. Continue to run the activity until everybody had a chance to pass the ball.

After the activity, ask the participants whether they doubted if the ball reaches to them after it bounces. Have them reflect on those responses as to how changes happen in the workplace, and just like how the ball bounces back after hitting the floor they should be able to get through these changes in time.

6.    Create ownership

When presenting the change to the team, make sure to relay the news while taking ownership and address their questions with as much information as you can disclose. This is to create an assurance to your team that even with these changes happening they can remain to do their task and not dwell on any possible ill effects that could happen out from these changes. Management transitions can be intimidating news especially to entry-level positions that’s why it is important that you take proper precautions when communicating the news to lower chances of resistance from the team.

7.    Speak to the individual

The processing and the level of resiliency to change varies from each of your team. Some may see this as an opportunity for growth while some may look at this as a source of fear and intimidation. When discussing changes, make sure that you are able to do a touch base with each of your team members and gauge how they see the situation. In this way, you can tailor the manner of how you communicate these changes to them and give them a different perception to things that could improve and prevent resistance from these members.

8.    Blindfold Game

This is an icebreaker game that is effective when you are in the middle of discussion about changes in management or any company processes. This activity will allow questions about pace of changes, managing the change through proper communication and delegation.

Have the team choose a partner to pair up for this activity.

  1. Prepare a blindfold for everyone
  2. After being blindfolded, move the pair away from each other in a considerable distance.
  3. Instruct the participants to find their pairs by just listening to their instructions.

9.    Tea Break

When giving out news about changes in management, it is expected that there will be certain resistance from the team and perhaps violent reactions that indicate how they are against these changes. From the perspective of the new leader, it could be a daunting task to try reaching out to these people since they might not welcome these types of transitions for a long time unless they are given a fresh perspective on how they look at these vicissitudes.

This activity below is a good icebreaker when you are presenting the change to the team.

  • Prepare a drink based on each participant’s preferences. This could be a tea, coffee, or soda.
  • Have the team drink these beverages inside the room and ask them how it tasted.
  • Bring the team outside of the room, preferably a balcony view or somewhere in the office with a nice view and have them drink from their cup
  • Ask the team how the taste differs when they were inside from when they drank it outside

This activity is designed to show the team that change involves how they see the situation.

10. Get Together

There’s no better way to break the ice to your new team than to get them together and spend time knowing them and letting them know more of you in return.  Things can be difficult to team members when there are changes in the management, but so are those leaders who have been moved to handle a different team from what they have. There will always be a certain level of animosity in between as both parties try to cope with these changes. It is best that the team and new management take time to get together and know each other. This is a good way to break common barriers and initiate the bond for them to cope up with the change.