Five Things is a fun networking activity you can do in person or online. Networking isn’t everyone’s cup of tea because it can be challenging to get the conversation rolling. Providing a simple task for the group provides an immediate topic of discussion which removes the uncomfortableness about what to say first.
Below are the instructions for Five Things that will work in person or in online groups of all sizes. If online, you will need to use a platform, such as Zoom that allows for breakout rooms.
Hints for facilitating this engagement:
- Consider the amount of time you have for this activity when choosing the size of the groups and the amount of time they have. You will want to put some pressure on the group in order to do this quickly. The larger the group, the longer it will take to find five things.
- This could be done in several rounds with 2-3 people. In this adaptation, they will get to mix and mingle with more people.
- Encourage them to follow up with each other later to talk more about their commonalities.
- Divide the group into small groups of 2-5 people.
- Tell the groups they have “x” minutes to discover 5 things they share in common.
- Challenge them to be creative and not just go for the obvious things.
- To debrief, ask each group to share the most interesting thing they all have in common.
Providing light structure while networking takes away the awkward pressure of making conversation with someone you may not know at all. Five Things is a fun networking activity that connects people on their commonalities and opens the door to follow-up conversations later as well.
About the Author: Leigh Ann Rodgers, Founder of Better Teams and Forward, is an IAF Certified Professional Facilitator with 20 years of experience in the human development field. Leigh Ann is a skilled meeting facilitator, trainer, and coach working across the globe to help leaders cultivate teams that are happy and high-performing.
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