Put as many chairs as there are participants in two rows. Place the chairs tightly, facing each other. If there is an odd number of participants, put a single chair in front for the bus driver.
Brief the participants. Welcome them to a great new invention. Explain that you have a fantastic bus that does not pollute the air, because it runs on positive energy. On this bus everyone gets to speak with everyone and they are for sure going to have a great trip together.
Load the bus. Ask the participants to go and sit on the chairs, close to each other so the knees are nearly touching each other. If there are odd numbers of participants, one person will play the bus driver and will just listen.
Start giving positive feedback. Ask the participants in one row to give as much positive feedback as possible to the participants seated in the opposite row (who will listen quietly). Give the following types of examples:
- What I like about you is…
- What I appreciate about you is…
- I feel happy whenever you…
Announce a time limit of 45 seconds.
Change the roles. After 45 seconds, blow a whistle and pause for 10 seconds. Then ask the participants in the other row to take their turn.
Rotate the participants. After 45 seconds, it is time to rotate the passengers. If you have an even number of participants, select one person to stay on the same chair. Ask everyone else to rotate one chair clockwise. If you have an odd number of participants, ask everyone to rotate one chair clockwise. This will result in a new person becoming the bus driver.
Continue the positive conversations. As before, ask the participants in the two rows to take turns sharing positive feedback. Keep rotating the participants depending on the available time.
Conduct a debriefing discussion after several rounds of this activity. Ask the participants to discuss what happens when people give positive and appreciative feedback. Talk about the energy created in the room. Ask them how they can give more positive feedback within this group, within the organization, and in their families.
Source: Thiagi Group - Karin Hedén