Use icebreakers to get participants vocal and more participatory sooner by introducing themselves beyond name and title. The following examples can be used by virtual participants as well. When virtual, make sure all participants identify themselves before speaking.
Questions to Launch Effective Icebreakers (aka Meeting Sparks)
- A simple yet effective-method: “If I were a . . . “ approach such as—“If I were a gem, I would be a ____” or “If I were a flower, I would be a ____” or “If I were a bird, I would be a _____” or “If I were a vehicle, I would be a _____”
- Describe your dream career as a child.
- Describe the first event you remember vividly in life.
- Explain how you got one of your scars (and where it is).
- Explain your strangest paying job or chore?
- If you could change anything about the way you were raised, what would it be?
- If you were a room in a house, which room are you and why?
- “My hero is . . .”
- Name a talent that you have and no one here knows about it.
- Name the last song you sang out loud by yourself?
- Sound out or act out your high school mascot.
- Tell us an animal you would like to be, and why.
- Tell us your favorite James Bond actor and explain why.
- The title of your autobiography?
- Two truths and a lie—participants guess the lie.
- Use one word to describe where you are right now.
- What kitchen appliance or tool would you be and why?
- What would you bring with you on a desert island?
- What’s on your reading list or nightstand?
- When wake up tomorrow having gained any one quality or ability, what would it be?
- Which model and type of automobile would you be and why?
- “Would you rather?” questions; eg, Would you rather be invisible or be able to read minds? Would you rather live without music or live without television? Would you rather be 4 feet tall or 8 feet tall?
- Your favorite ice cream?
Meeting Sparks – another phrase for icebreakers
- Based on a project theme, create new surnames for participants; eg, Lori Aconcagua (ie, highest mountain in South America).
- Begin with a “Fun Fact” sharing by each individual of something previously unknown to everyone.
- On a rotating basis, have an assignee bring in a joke.
- Start the meeting with a song and award a prize to the first person that correctly identifies the name or artist or both.
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