Leigh Ann Rodgers

9 Dimensions Team Building Activity

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9 Dimensions is a powerful activity designed to build relationships and trust among team members.

There are 2 variations of this icebreaker. The first version is for teams who want to get to know each other better. The second version is for teams who want to explore how they are working together as a team.

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Goal

To build relationships and trust among team members.

Attachments

Materials

    Instructions

    Variation #1 – My 9 Dimensions

    Purpose: To build relationships by evaluating and sharing about significant life areas.

    1. Give each participant a copy of the My 9 Dimensions worksheet and a sheet of dot stickers (with red, green, yellow and blue dots).

    The 9 dimensions for this variation are: Adventure, Career / Profession, Community Service, Creative Outlets, My Environment, Family & Friends, Health & Fitness, Personal Growth, Spirituality.

    2. Instruct participants to evaluate their current status for each dimension in the grid.

    Participants should place a colored dot (using the key below) on each of the 9 dimensions. Only give them two minutes with no time to overthink it. Tell them, “Just go with your gut.”

    • Green Dot = I’m crushing it!
    • Yellow Dot = I need to work on this a little.
    • Red Dot = Yikes, I need to work on this a lot!
    • Blue Dot = This is not a priority right now.

    3. Ask participants to share about one dimension they put a green dot, and one that they put a yellow or a red dot.

    Give each person 2 minutes to share (allow them to disclose at their own comfort level).

    4. Optional debrief questions below (5 minute debrief may be sufficient).

    • What did you learn about each other (or our team)?
    • How can we support each other to improve our red and yellow areas?


    Variation #2 – My Team's 9 Dimensions

    Purpose: To build relationships by evaluating and sharing perspectives of how the team is doing in significant areas.

    1. Give each participant a copy of the My Team's 9 Dimensions worksheet and a sheet of dot stickers (with red, green, yellow and blue dots).

    The 9 dimensions for this variation are: Communication, Attitude, Trust, Role Clarity, Alignment about Processes, Accountability, Supportive Relationships, Meeting Deadlines, Quality of Work.

    2. Instruct participants to evaluate their perception of the team's current status for each dimension in the grid.

    Participants should place a colored dot (using the key below) on each of the 9 dimensions. Only give them two minutes with no time to overthink it. Tell them, “Just go with your gut.”

    • Green Dot = We are crushing it!
    • Yellow Dot = We need to work on this a little.
    • Red Dot = Yikes, we need to work on this a lot!
    • Blue Dot = This is not a priority right now.

    3. Ask participants to share about one dimension they put a green dot, and one that they put a yellow or a red dot.

    Give each person 2 minutes to share (allow them to disclose at their own comfort level).

    4. Optional debrief questions below (10-30 minute debrief).

    • Where are we all in agreement about our team?
    • In which dimensions do we have the most variation in our perspectives?
    • Which yellow and/or red area(s) do we want to improve the most?
    • What can we do to improve our yellow and/or red areas?


    Tips for running this activity online

    We’d recommend creating your table of 9 dimensions in Google Suite or Excel and sharing with your recipients. They can fill in their table on their own computer in private.

    Alternatively, have everyone create their 3 x 3 table in the tool of their choice in the meeting. They can even hand draw their table if they like! Remember that recipients share their entries verbally and do not share the tables themselves - so the form of the table isn’t too important.

    Brief your participants and invite each person to colour each section of their table with the relevant colour. They can highlight, insert a dot or just change the colour of the text!

    When facilitating group discussion, we’d recommend that participants use non-verbal means to indicate they’d like to speak. You can use tools like Zoom’s nonverbal feedback tools, a reaction emoji, or just have people put their hands up. The facilitator can then invite that person to talk. 


    Summary

    The beauty of this activity is people can choose how much they want to disclose. Regardless of how open each participant is, the team will learn more about each other and/or how the team is doing.

    Also, this is totally flexible because you can change the 9 dimensions to work for your specific group.

    Please share any additional ideas you have in the comments section below.

    Background

    Source: You can find the original description of this activity on the Better Teams blog together with more team building ideas.

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