5 Leadership Training Activities to Try

There are many kinds of leadership training activities out there, but they all have one thing in common, and that is to help train leaders achieve their full potentials. These activities are designed to help potential leaders understand themselves, the people they lead, their capabilities and how they should respond to situational challenges. They are also designed to help train the leader in various critical areas of leadership, such as organization, mentoring, observation, critical thinking, creative problem solving and motivating their followers.

However, not all of these activities are the same. Some activities are designed to address all of the different leadership qualities, while others are designed to focus on only one or two qualities at the expense of others. Furthermore, some leadership activities are designed for adults, while others are designed for teens and even older children. Some are designed for large groups of people, while others are designed to improve group cohesion among small groups of people. Some activities are meant to be competitive, while others are designed to help members work together.

Because of the wide variety of options available, leadership training courses need to use several different activities, as opposed to just one. So if you’re looking for effective and comprehensive leadership training activities to help improve you or your colleagues’ leadership skills, then here are several good options for you to try.

Leadership Training Activities to Try

Active Listening 

Active Listening is considered as a leadership skill activity in that it focuses on helping people improve their own leadership skills. In this activity, there are two people involved: The Listener or Receiver and the Speaker. It is the receiver’s job to listen to the speaker and to understand his or her emotions as well as their message. The listener will also be expected to empathize with the speakers words, and feed back his or her own interpretation back to the speaker for verification after he or she is finished. The listener is also required to say only what he or she feels the speaker’s message really means, and nothing else.

Although a simple activity, Active Listening helps potential leaders develop their ability to empathize as well as communication skills. This particular activity is also useful for situations where problem solving and group discussions are necessary to achieve critical goals.

Brainstorming

Brainstorming is considered an organizational activity because it involves each member of the team offering his or her own ideas in order to solve a problem or achieve an objective. In this activity, the team is given a complex problem which it needs to solve. The actual brainstorming process requires each to create a feasible plan, which they will also need to perform in order to solve the problem.

In this activity, the leader will also need to organize each member of the team effectively, so that everyone can voice his or her concerns or offer their advice. The more practical ideas given by member of the team, the better.

The Scream Machine

The Scream Machine is an Energizer type activity, in the sense that it’s a very fast paced activity that’s designed to help potential leaders adapt to a potentially chaotic setting. This activity is also useful in the sense that it helps participants understand themselves a little better, particularly when they find themselves in a tense situation.

To perform the Scream Machine, the first thing that the participants will have to do is to form a tight circle with their heads looking down at their shoes. When someone cries “Heads Up,” everyone will have to raise their heads and look at someone else. If the person you are looking at is also looking at you then scream real loud and jump out of the circle. If not, simply lower your head down again. This entire process is repeated until only two people are left.

Human Knot

The Human Knot is basically a team building activity, which focuses on problem solving and team coordination. To perform this activity, the leader, along with the team members, will need to make a large circle using their bodies. Each of the members will then have to put their left hand in the middle of the circle, and hold hands with another member of group who is not adjacent to them. This process is then repeated using the right hand, except each member needs to hold the hand of a different member who is not next to them.

Once all of the members are holding each others’ hands, they will have to use team work in order unravel themselves into a circle again without becoming disconnected. It is also the leader’s job during this activity to make sure that everyone achieves this goal and help each member coordinate with all of the other members of the group.

Leadership Quotes

Not all leadership training activities involve large groups of people or complex problems, and “Leadership Quotes” is one good example of such an activity. In Leadership quotes, several quotes from important or popular people are posted on a wall. Each participant will then be asked to choose a particular quote or saying and then to explain their interest in said quote.

Another variation of this activity is to simply ask the participants to say a quote, a proverb or a saying which best describes their outlook on life. It doesn’t matter if it’s their own personal quote or if they are quoting someone else. What matters is that they can explain why the quote is relevant to their lives. As potential leaders, they are also expected to articulate their explanations in a clear and charismatic manner.

Conclusion

The activities mentioned here are by no means the only leadership activities available. A quick search on Google will reveal a whole host of other activities for you to try. However, regardless of whichever activity you wish to use, it’s important to keep in mind that the goal of all of these activities is to help build up your leadership qualities.

In this sense, it’s not really very important whether or not you accomplish your goals for each activity. What matters is that you can respond to each challenge with a sound plan and motivate your followers into working efficiently. Because of this fact, leadership activities are both educational tools as well as practical tests for your skills. So in performing leadership training activities, it’s always important to remember that final goal is not to help you do certain tasks, but to make you an even better leader.

Jason Silberman
Jason is the former Lead Author & Editor of TrainingStation Blog
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