Telephone is a familiar game for many, as it teaches the importance of direct communication.
To start, you can break the team into smaller groups (but try not to make the group smaller than 10).
Have each group sit or stand side by side in a line. Then whisper a sentence in the first participant’s ear, quietly so that nobody else can hear it.
Suggested sentences are:
- Twelve tiny mice hid from the hungry ginger cats in the apartment on 19 Abbeyvale Avenue
- Bobby boasted to Barry about his brilliant red and white stripy woolen bobble hat
- Six happy kids and two spotty dogs rode the number eight bus on a sunny fall morning
- The vase was full of thorny pink roses and three bright blue tulips with foliage to finish
- Monty the professional potter crafted a terracotta teapot for old Mrs Andrew’s earl grey
You can use your own sentence, but remember, it should be fairly easy to misinterpret.
That person will whisper it to the next person and so on. They cannot repeat it if they have misheard it. The last person in the line should say out loud what they have just heard – and you should say what the message originally was.
Count on lots of laughing, as usually the last message is so radically different than the first that people can’t help but chuckle!
Gather the team. Ask them a few questions:
- If we were to communicate like this all the time, what would the impact be on our customers?
- What tools do we have around us to stop communication breaking down?
- Do we always use these tools effectively?