This is a sample of my Team Building Booklet 8 Variations of Infinite Loops. This is 1 variations….for ALL 8 and they are very excellent you can purchase the entire Team Building Book


Team Building for innovation. Michael Cardus

8 Variations of Infinite Loops takes a fresh and creative approach to a common team building activity. Each variation can be used as a stand alone, or can be sequenced into an experiential learning and team building program. These variations all focus on creating better teams that are able to work together to solve problems and innovate solutions.

To purchase all 8 variations Click Here

Partner Connection

Outcomes & Objectives:
  • Creating connections
  • Learning from experience
  • Solutions thinking
  • 1 Infinite-Loop per/person
Group Size:
  • Ideally 6 – 20 is a good size.
  • Larger and smaller groups can accomplish this activity. With adjustments, this activity can be led for as few as two, or as many as 2000 or more.
Time Frame:
  • 20 – 45 minutes, including processing.

This is a great follow-up to Circle Separation and different enough so that if you have an experienced group this will feel different to them.

If you are sequencing this to follow Circle Separation, then you are prepared.

If you are doing this as a stand-alone activity, go back and read Partner Separation, and read the steps for how to connect.

This activity can take place while people are sitting at table and/or standing. Be sure that there is sufficient space for people to spread out and move around as necessary.

Instructions and Facilitator Script:

clip_image002Here is one way to introduce the activity. You may choose to modify it for your needed outcomes.

“As you learn to improve your processes at work, life, school etc… you understand that every problem does not exactly match the last. You must determine how you solved the last problem, what worked and what did not work and learn from that. In a moment we are going to see how well you can take what you already learned from Partner Separation or Circle Separation, and supply you with a different problem where you will have to use the solutions you already found and apply them to a new situation.”

At this point, have the participants get with their partner. There are many ways you can do this; you decide what is best. If there is an odd number of participants make one team of 3 people, the set up is the same.

Have these guidelines written on a flipchart paper or on a slide.

  • The overall objective is to get everyone connected to their partner so they are tied together.
  • At the end, both ropes will be overlapped a single time like we started in the earlier rounds.
  • Both partners start with their wrists in the loops.
  • The ropes must remain, at all times, on the wrists they started on.
  • Partners cannot switch ropes or take their hands out of the ropes.
  • The knots must remain tied as they are and you cannot physically alter the ropes or knots or partners.

Allow a brief time for questions and clarification, be careful not to reveal too much, this is supposed to be challenging.

As the activity progresses, walk around and observe the teams. Look for information and specific actions that can be brought up during the processing time. For example, if one team or one person knows the answer do they share and help the rest of the team or do they keep the information to themselves? How are they transferring the processing from the other rounds into this round?

The objective is for the information to spread and everyone to be connected to their partner. This is when your judgment as a facilitator is needed. How much do you interfere with the team? When should you comment?

Allow the group to work on the task for about 10 minutes, then ask everyone to stop and gather around you.

Ask some initial questions:
  • What is your initial reaction to this activity?
  • What are you applying from the other rounds?
  • What if anything is working so far?
  • How are you measuring progress and setbacks?
  • How might you act if you knew the solution?

“In a moment I am going to show you the solution. Following that, you are going to go back to your partner and practice for three minutes. Practice getting connected, then separated, and then connect again. Even when you think you know it, keep practicing, we want to move your skills from rote copying to personal mastery of this process.”

Show the team how to connect. If you have sequenced to this point, they should have a good understanding of this process.

See the illustration below

imageStep 1 imageStep 2 imageStep 3
imageStep 4 imageStep 5 imageStep 6
imageStep 7
  • Step 1: Partner and you are separate
  • Step 2: Grab the middle of your partner’s rope
  • Step 3: Partners rope goes UP your palm
  • Step 4: Over your fingers
  • Step 5: Down your knuckles
  • Step 6: Slight pull
  • Step 7: Connected!

Allow at least three minutes for practice and mastery. Walk around and offer tutoring and help as needed, and remind the teams to keep practicing this skill. Following the three minutes for mastery, pull the team together for some processing.

Facilitator Notes:

As mentioned earlier, YOU MUST MASTER THIS.

Even though connecting the Infinite Loops is similar to the Partner Separation, it is different enough to really throw off some people and teams. If this happens process the team, and its members through this. The path to innovation comes from knowing a process forwards and backwards. This will be a difficult concept for some people. Find a way for the team to explore this and find their strengths and constraints.

Remember that this challenge is about finding solutions and developing resiliency. Let the team struggle. When you feel the energy dropping, you may supply some clues.

Potential Processing Questions:
  • In what ways was this similar to what we did before?
  • Who is still wondering how to complete the task?
  • In what ways was this different to what we did before?
  • How did you transfer the lessons learned to this task?
  • In what ways is this like work, school, life, etc…?
  • When you face a challenge do you ever think, how is this like something I have already successfully completed?
  • Think of an example, of something you are working on right now (work, school, life, etc…) How is that similar to something you have solved in the past?
  • What can you take from your past success and apply to your current needs?
  • If we have another challenge, what can you repeat that was successful?


This is a sample of my Team Building Booklet 8 Variations of Infinite Loops. This is 1 of the variations….for ALL 8 and they are very excellent you can purchase the entire Team Building Book.



michael cardus is create-learning