10 best meeting icebreakers
Icebreakers are a great way to ‘warm up’ a meeting or training session. These fun and interactive activities are effective in helping delegates and those participating in a meeting get to know each other, form bonds and generally ‘break the ice’ ahead of a meeting.
If you are thinking about introducing icebreakers into a forthcoming meeting, take a look at the following 10 best meeting icebreakers.
- Meet and greet
One simple yet effective icebreaker is to get each delegate to tell the rest of the meeting their name and position within a company. You could ask them to inform the group of other information, such as where they’re from and what their hobbies are. Having knowledge of such information can be an effective way for the rest of the meeting to get to know a little about the other participants.
- One word icebreakers
If you’re worried that icebreaking activities might steal precious time away from the focus of the meeting, why not opt for the ‘one-word icebreaker’ challenge? This icebreaking activity generally involves delegates being split into smaller groups and asked to discuss a topic, preferably one that is related to the theme of the meeting. After a minute, each member is then asked to share one word that describes the topic – As you can imagine this icebreaker challenge can be a fun way for participants to get to know each other. And, as Human Resources writes:
“This icebreaker helps the group explore their thoughts on a common issue.”
- The ‘what animal would you be?’ icebreaker
For a fun and fairly quick icebreaker that can help get meetings off to a more relaxed and less formal start, ask the group to share with others ‘what animal would they be and why?’ You can of course adopt the question to whatever takes your fancy, such as ‘Which city would you choose to be?’, or ‘Which fruit are you?’ Naturally, this particular activity can spawn a series of hilarious answers and is great for ‘breaking the ice’.
- The ‘adjective name’ icebreaker
Another super quick yet effective icebreaker is to ask everyone to tell the rest of the group their name but precede it with an adjective that begins with the same letter as their name. For example, they could be called ‘Entrepreneurial Ed’ or ‘Dynamic Diane’. The trick is to test the rest of the group on their listening skills and memory by getting them to refer to their fellow participants’ ‘adjective names’ for the rest of the session!
- Name Aerobics
Another fun activity designed to help delegates remember each other’s name, is to get the group to stand in a circle facing one another. Taking it in turns, the participants have to spell out the letter of their name by miming an action. The rest of the group has to then repeat the motions and mime out the name!
- Truth and lies
Uncovering what’s true and what’s a lie is always a fun activity, which can be utilised into being a fun icebreaker at the start of a meeting. Get each of the meeting members to tell the rest of the group three things about themselves – two which are true and one which is a lie. The rest of the group then has to guess which is the lie and why they think it’s a lie!
- Learn what you can about your neighbour in two minutes
This icebreaker is particularly effective for meetings in which nobody knows each other. Ask the delegates to pair up and give them two minutes each to tell their partner as much as they can about themselves. The listening partner then has to reiterate to the rest of the group as much information as they can about that person.
- The coin and the year
Another quick icebreaking activity that won’t take away precious time from the focus of your meeting is the ‘coin and the year’ icebreaker. This activity simply involves the meeting host handing a coin to each participant who then has to share what they were doing the year the coin was minted. Though be warned, this might prove a tad problematic if the coin was made before the person was born, so it’s a good idea to check your stash of coins prior to the meeting!
- No smiling!
Start your meeting off with a bit of fun reverse psychology by telling the group are not allowed to smile for the duration of the meeting. For those who forget and smile, they’ll be penalised!
- The paper aeroplane icebreaker
Definitely an effective icebreaker that will ensure your meeting goes off with a ‘flying start’ (excuse the pun!) Provide each participant with a small piece of paper and ask them to write an interesting fact about themselves. They can then make an aeroplane out of the paper and launch it across the room. The aeroplanes get mixed up and the fellow delegates get to read out the facts and guess who it belongs to!
If you’ve got a fun and effective icebreaker you’d like to share with our readers, please let us know about it!
Meanwhile if you’re looking to host a meeting in Leeds, why not use the modern and stylish meeting facilities at Weetwood Hall? From teambuilding meetings to breakfast meetings, conferences to team meetings, we can help you host a memorable and effective meeting in Leeds – the perfect place to practice your new icebreaker ideas!
Book a conference for this October or November and for every ten delegates you book, one goes free (New bookings only for conferences taken in October and November. Terms and Conditions apply).