Mad Tea Party is a Liberating Structure I’ve recently learned and have already come to love. In the past two weeks, I’ve incorporated this activity into a training class and a working meeting with great results.
At the end of this blog I’ll share with you how I adapted this structure for these two groups including the questions I used:
In both cases, I used this activity as an opening exercise to:
From my experience, this is ideal for groups of 10 – 50 people. I think 15-30 is ideal.
*I found it interesting to ask the outer circle to move once to the right two times in a row. In the third round, I asked the inner circle to move once to their right. After that, I would switch it up to keep them thinking which created some humor and laughter as people thought about who should move and where to move. Another option is to have them move two spaces to the right. The goal is to be sure they are with a different person each round.
I gave them two minutes on each round because the questions required thoughtful answers:
After the rounds, I asked if anyone had a question about Day 1 and we had two very provocative questions which led to a meaningful discussion.
I only gave them one minute. The questions were designed to get them thinking about how they would behave in order to support success.
I encourage you to try this with a large group. To read more about this and other Liberating Structures click here.
Use the Mad Tea Party to get a large group engaged around the topic of your meeting or training session.
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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