For the 4th year in a row I worked with a group from Buffalo State College Student Support Services Program. An excellent group of first year college students and Faculty to assist them in being successful. My work is to lead Team Building & Leadership workshops and develop a culture of support to enhance the success rates of theses students.

One area of focus was decision making and how this group can support you in making choices and learning from the choices made. I decided to use an activity I call

Choosing Choice to Choose Connection
  • Overview: Teams of 3-6 are supplied with 4 ropes tied in loops, 1 rope connects all the ropes like a key ring. The teams have to choose which rope connects them all together.
  • Outcomes: The ability to practice making decisions that have no clear answer, all that can be done is choose which one looks like the best answer. This becomes complicated when in work teams. Practice in creation of a decision making systems for agreement as well as listening + speaking for collaboration is necessary.

Team Building and leadership expert michael cardus

While processing the activity with the teams I asked;

I am going to ask you a weird question, Pretend that we all go on break and during this break your team does what it normally does on break…But unknown to the members of your team everyone else was shown which rope is the correct rope to choose. BUT your team did not know this because you all were on a break. In what ways, besides just telling you which rope was the correct choice, could the people and teams support, guide, serve your team in making the right choice?

Each team them had ~8-10 minutes to create lists and discuss the question.

  • Think about the question above; How would you respond? Your team respond? Your boss respond? Your subordinate respond?
  • In what ways could you alter this question to be appropriate with your team?
  • If everyone BUT you knew the correct choice – How would you go about asking them questions to find the answer? How would you treat them the same or differently?