Whether you’re just beginning to implement agile methodologies into your workspace or you’ve already been using them for some time, the choice to join the agile framework is a wise one.
Agile working methods allow teams to chase their goals freely and creatively, and they’re a good way to instigate team bonding as well.
However, depending on your teams and the ways in which you’ve implemented agile frameworks, your particular workforce might take some time to understand what you’re asking of them or might even need some nudging in this direction.
Here are 10 agile games you can use to boost team building and engender creativity in your team!
1. The chocolate bar game
We’ve seen this variant of agile games around on sites like Easy Agile, and we’re big fans of it.
Essentially, one team member acts as the product manager, and the others are tasked with creating a chocolate bar according to the manager’s specifications.
There’s just one prerequisite: the bar must be delicious. The product manager will provide fictitious customer feedback based on what the team comes up with, so this is a great way to learn agile methodologies with a fictional product.
2. The paper airplane game
The paper airplane game is another great contribution to the pantheon of agile games, and any team can play it.
Here’s the basic premise. Your team must build a paper airplane. The catch is that they can only make a single fold before they must hand over the airplane to the next person.
This is a good way to teach team members how their individual contributions will affect the project as a whole, and it’s also a good way to increase team bonding.
3. The marshmallow tower game
In this game, teams are tasked with building a tower that has a marshmallow as its crown.
It sounds simple, but the “building materials” teams are given are often fairly flimsy; we’ve seen this variant on agile games played with spaghetti, for instance, or even just string.
In the end, the team with the most structurally sound marshmallow tower wins, but speed and specification are also important, making this another great agile game to teach teams with.
4. The ball point game
Most agile games revolve around team members communicating and figuring out strategies, and this ball-based game is no different.
Teams are given a ball – it could be a football, for instance, or a basketball – and told to pass it around. Each time a team member touches the ball, they score a point, but points are banked when the last person to touch the ball is also the first.
As you can imagine, this requires extensive communication to ensure that the ball ends up back where it should.
5. An agile broken telephone variation
We’ve seen this game called “Broken Skype”, but you could also call it Broken Zoom or something similar.
First, you must invent some hand signals; try to keep them fairly simple.
After doing so, line up your team and tap the first member on the back, showing them a hand signal. They must then do the same to the person in front.
When you reach the end of the line, the last person turns and shows you their variant of the original movement. The closer it is to the one you showed, the better.
6. The emoji game
When it comes to agile games, communication is key, and this emoji game is a great way to facilitate communication.
One team member is the messenger, and others must interpret what that member’s messages mean. The catch is that the messenger must only use emojis to communicate their message.
This could be a favourite film or album, for instance, or it could be a simple message that describes something about the messenger.
7. The bubble point game
Unlike the ball point game, this agile game revolves around removing things that are obscuring an image.
You cover an image with a number of “bubbles”; this can either be done digitally or you can use actual paper in order to obscure a real-life image.
Then, you must task a team with uncovering the image, with the stipulation that they can only remove a certain number of bubbles each round. You can add extra conditions if it’s not challenging enough!
The classic tabletop game Battleships has also sometimes been used to teach agile methodologies.
Each team has a grid on which a number of ships are located. Players can’t see each other’s grids, but must fire at certain grid squares. If they land a hit, they can then assume nearby grid squares also contain ships.
This game requires communication and strategy to accurately play, and there’s also a little luck and guesswork involved, which means that players shouldn’t feel too unequal.
9. The sandwich game
This agile game is something of a variant on the chocolate bar game, although it’s perhaps a little more intriguing in communication terms.
Teams are tasked with making a sandwich, but they must be as strict as possible with instructions.
For instance, they can’t simply say “add lettuce”; they must list where the lettuce is from and how they intend to prepare it before it’s added to the sandwich.
10. Simple icebreakers
We know that the word “icebreaker” has taken on something of a negative connotation, but they can still be useful in some situations.
One good agile game to play is simply to get each team member to present each other with three facts about themselves. Two of those facts are true and one is false.
Team members must then guess which of the facts their colleagues present them with is untrue. If this game is kept as light and breezy as it should be, it’s great fun!