YOU ARE HERE: - Free Training Materials

Free Training Resources, Games, Roleplays, Activities & Downloads

Current Articles

Get Updates to Exercise Database by Email  

Team Building Exercise: Shared Problem Solving

Team Building Exercise: Shared Problem Solving
Exercises, Team Building, Coaching, Motivation, Giving Feedback, Appraisal

Article Rating:::: 75 Ratings :::: Monday, July 11, 2011


This activity allows people to help each other anonymously. Sometimes we may feel stuck or wonder what we could do to improve our behaviour or skills. We may however not feel comfortable to directly ask others about them. This exercise sets the scene for people to open up and help each other without fear of being wrong or obvious.


Provide solutions to problems recorded on a paper for others.

What You Need

  • Papers and pens.


  • Distribute one sheet of paper to each delegate.
  • Ask each person to write a 4 digit number on the back of the sheet at random and make sure they remember their number. This is simply used later on to identify the sheet and helps to keep the system somewhat anonymous.
  • Ask each person to write a problem they have or something they want to improve on, on top of their sheet. Examples of problems are:
    • I am having problems getting dominated in meetings
    • I am late for meetings more often than I like
    • I don’t feel my clients/bosses/colleagues understand what I do for them. There is no appreciation.
    • When the phone rings, my colleague almost always leaves it for me to pick up
  • Ask everyone to stack up their sheets faced down at the centre of the table.
  • Shuffle the stack.
  • Nominate one person to pick the first sheet and then clockwise for others to follow suite.
  • Ask each person to consider the problem and write a solution, advice or suggestion on the paper.
  • Once finished, each person should hand over the sheet to the person on their left. Continue until everyone has answered everything.
  • Explain that if you came across your own question, simply try to answer like everyone else. If you ask the right questions, you can always come up with potential solutions.
  • At the end, collect all the sheets. Use the numbers written at the back of the sheets to distribute the sheets back to their original owners.
  • Owners can now read through the solutions and get inspired by the suggestions. Allow time for them to absorb this.
  • Some people might be happy to have a group discussion about their issue. Encourage them to approach others for more details on provided suggestions and get more ideas.
  • Monitor the time people spend in this stage and make sure everyone gets a fair chance to talk and review their cases if they want to.
  • If you have time, you can have another round.


Explaining the Exercise: 2 minutes

Activity: 5 min identification of issues + 10 min giving solutions = 15 minutes

Group Feedback: 15 minutes


Simply facilitate the discussion based on the issues raised.

Post Rating


Train the Trainer Resources

Get Insights - Read Guides and Books - Attend Courses

Learn Training Delivery


There are currently no comments, be the first to post one.

Post Comment

Name (required)

Email (required)


Enter the code shown above:

Rate = 2.6 out of 5 :::: 75 Ratings.


Full Index of Training Exercises

Collection of 500+

Browse the exercises divided into 7 main groups. 

Course Design Book

Course Design Strategy - Book Front Cover

Course Design Strategy

Available as paperback and ebook

Join 30,000+ Readers.

Download Free Exclusive Training Resources and Join Our Mailing List:

Online Course

Train the Trainer Core Skils Course

Online Train the Trainer Course:
Core Skills

CPD Accredited

Learn How to Become the Best Trainer in Your Field


Full Course Details

Train the Trainer Book

Train the Trainer - Book Front Cover

Available as paperback and ebook

Train the Trainer Courses

Attend Our 2-Day Instructor-Led Train the Trainer Course

Book Early to Get Discounts.


We Offer Fixed-Price In-House Courses Too.


Train the Trainer Self Study Course

Body Language Guide

Free Giveaway Training Resources

Download a free comprehensive training package including training guidelines, soft skills training activities, assessment forms and useful training resources that you can use to enhance your courses.

Download Free Training Marterials