Use any of these free icebreakers at the start of a training session.
A two page collection of short icebreaker introduction sessions can be downloaded for free from the link at the bottom of this page, or you can follow the notes below.
Alphabet Search – divide the participants into small groups. Instructions: Search your person for objects that you have on you or with you ranging from A-Z. Make a list. First group to get all 26 letters represented wins.
Exercise can explore how diverse we are – insight into our individual selves. If done as a small group lends itself well to a small team building exercise as the group works together through the alphabet.
Always Better with Two – pair people up together. Ask them to spend 2 minutes each talking about themselves. At the end of 4 minutes we will come back together as a group and you will introduce each other. Ask them to tell the persons name, their position and how many years experience they have in the industry.
For example: How many years they have been in Customer Service? All participants get to hear about other participants from of a third party instead of hearing from the person themselves.
Depending on the session content, it is fun to add up all the years experience in the room and close with something like “Combined, we have 100 years of customer service experience.”
Animals – preparation: On a slip of paper, write the name of an animal that makes an obvious noise. Create five to ten slips for each animal.
Give each slip of paper out and instruct the group that they have to find the people in the room who have the same animal as them without talking. Give them a few minutes. They should make sounds and gestures that let them know what animal they are. Once they find each person in their group they should continue around until they find all the monkeys, or all the dogs, etc.
Birthday Partner – have participants mingle in the group and identify the person whose birth date (not year – just month and date) is closest to their own. Find out two things they have in common.
Birthday Party Ice Breaker – participants get a chance to create their own dream birthday party to learn more about the participants in the group. They should list what and who they would like at their dream birthday party.
Provide participants with a handout to record their answers and allow them to make notes and create their own dream birthday party. If the participants like to draw, ask them to illustrate.
In review, take a few moments to discuss as a group and share examples.
Dinner Partners – pair people up together. Ask them to spend 2 ½ minutes each talking about themselves. Ask them if they could have dinner with anyone, alive or dead, who would it be and why. Tell them that at the end of 5 minutes we will come back together as a group and you will introduce each other. Ask them to tell the persons name, their position and their dinner partner.
Dream Vacation – ask participants to introduce themselves and describe details of the ideal, perfect dream vacation.
Favourite Animal – as the participants arrive, and before you write their names on a name card, ask them to tell you their favourite animal and three adjectives to describe the animal. As they tell you, write the three adjectives on a name tag BEFORE their name (omit the name of the animal.) Ask them to mingle with the crowd, sharing why these adjectives best describe their own personality. Example – Loyal, cuddly, playful Sherrie. Ask participants to guess which animal the words represent.
Five Things in Common – split the group up into pairs. Each pair will have 30 seconds to find 5 things they have in common. At the end of the 30 seconds, put two pairs together and give the foursome a minute to find something all 4 participants have in common. Finally, each group can present the list of things they have in common. You can use this activity to form groups.
These icebreakers are useful to provide variety to the opening introductions at the start of your training sessions.