7 Leadership Exercises to Try at Your Workplace

2019-01-24T13:53:09+00:00 29, 01, 2019-By |

The success of a team is something which comes down to a whole number of different factors. Team members must be sure of their roles, and clear about the direction they’re headed. They must have access to the right resources, be confident in their abilities to make their voices heard, and must feel their input is important and appreciated. Communication must be open and flowing, and skills and talents must be put to the best possible use. However, all of these factors start to crumble without the most important aspect of them all; every team must have fantastic leadership, in order for it to become the smooth-running machine that real success demands.

Leadership is something which can be hard to define and pin down, and each team has its own interpretation of what leadership actually is. No matter what kind of leader you are, and no matter what kind of team you lead, one thing is for certain: there’s always room for improvement, and there are always ways to take your leadership skills to the next level. That’s why leadership activities and leadership games are so important; they give people the chance to exercise their leadership muscles, and they allow team member’s natural leadership skills to come forwards.

pawns on a white surface

When looking into leadership exercises for teams and leadership games in general, it’s vital to remember that leadership isn’t something which is only applicable for managers and people with assigned roles as team leaders. It’s a factor which almost everyone has the potential to explore and inhabit, developing leadership qualities in each and every team member is a surefire way to get the very best out of your team no matter what role they have. With good leadership qualities, team members can be instilled with the confidence to own their roles more effectively, raise questions and queries that result in better work, and have the initiative to make the right decisions at the right time.

Uncovering Skills With Leadership Activities and Games

At Eventwise, we love nothing more than watching team members discovering their inner leaders. Over the years, we’ve come up with a wide range of activities and away days which are based on exactly this principle: just check out our Murder Mystery, Successopoly, and Qube Challenge activities to get an idea of the scope of our leadership exercise games.

We know that bringing out the best in each team member is important. That’s why we’re such firm believers in using leadership exercises and leadership games in the workplace at regular intervals; not only do they break up the working day and provide some fun and relief, they step-by-step allow people to discover their potential, and help facilitate communication and openness between everybody in the team. There are countless leadership workshop exercises out there that are regularly used in workplaces all over the world, and many of them are incredibly easy to implement as energisers, games, or team-building sessions that really make a difference.

This week, we’ve picked out a handful of our favourite quick and easy leadership exercises for you to try - and we’re confident that not only are you going to be impressed with the results, but that your team members are going to love getting involved with them too. Bring out the leadership qualities of your team with these fantastic leadership workshop exercises today, and give your team members the boost they need to succeed!


In order for leadership qualities to truly come forward in team members, everybody in the team needs to know - and really know - that they can trust each other, and that they’re all working together to achieve a common goal. The minesweeper game is an absolute classic leadership exercise to demonstrate this level of trust, and it can be easily and quickly set up as a morning game to set the mood for the tasks ahead.

What You Need to Do:

Simply set up an obstacle course in an empty office space (or wherever you have room to manoeuvre) - you can do this by moving chairs around, putting piles of books on the floor, or whatever you have to hand. Your team members will take it in turns to be blindfolded, and then guided around the ‘mines’ by their colleagues, using basic instructions like ‘left’, ‘right’, ‘forward’, and ‘back’. It’s a brilliantly effective way to improve communication skills and build up that all-important sense of trust.

All Aboard The Lifeboat

This is a really fun activity, which involves a healthy dose of imagination alongside communication skills, problem solving, and lateral and critical thinking. Again, it’s one which can be carried out in any workspace, so long as you’ve got a bit of room to spare.

What You Need to Do:

Get your team members to construct a ‘boat’ from whatever materials they have available. Essentially, they need to build a space to stand on, made up of cardboard, mats, pieces of paper, or anything else which is to hand. Once completed, everybody in the team needs to stand on the boat. However, there’s a problem - the boat is sinking, and pieces of it are starting to disappear into the sea… and as each component of the boat is removed, the team is left with less and less space on which to stand. The team’s challenge is to occupy the diminishing space to the best of their abilities, and use their skills to ensure everyone’s survival!

Admirable Leaders

This is a really positive exercise to start off a meeting or a team session. Essentially, it involves splitting your team into small groups (three or four people per team tends to be work well), and getting them to discuss leaders they admire, and the reasons why they find them so admirable. Once everyone has had time to discuss, the group comes together as a whole, and they share their thoughts and findings. 

Steve Jobs presenting

Suspend The Brick

Setting your team a seemingly difficult or even impossible challenge is a fantastic way to bring out natural leadership skills, and to test the ingenuity, creativity, and problem-solving abilities of team members. The ‘suspend the brick’ game is an absolute classic used in workplaces all over the world, and never fails to bring out the best in people.

What You Need To Do:

Get hold of a load of craft materials, like scrap paper or newspapers, pencils, glue, tape, and other bits and pieces you have lying around. Each team is given a standard household brick, and is instructed that they must create a structure which can keep the brick off the ground for one minute, using only the materials they have been given. You’ll most likely get a range of different ideas, and your teams will be motivated to discover that what seems like a very difficult challenge actually has plenty of different solutions… they just need to use their leadership skills to settle on the one which brings about the best results. 

Drawing The Robot

Good leadership is about having great listening skills, as well as the initiative to put everything in place to bring about a positive result. This game requires your team members to listen very carefully to a set of instructions, and follow them while using their visual imagination to achieve a finished product. All you need is paper, pens, and some chairs, and you’re ready to go!

What You Need to Do:

Get your team members into pairs, and instruct them to sit back to back, so they’re unable to see each other. One person in the pair is given a drawing (typically a robot, but it can be any drawing made up of basic geometric shapes), and has to describe this drawing as accurately as possible to their partner who has their back to them. The other person in the pairing must then try to replicate the drawing as closely as possible, by listening to their partner, and asking questions which can help them achieve an accurate reproduction. It’s quick, fun, and guaranteed to bring about some laughs when the drawings are compared at the end!

Desert Island Survival

Your team has been involved a plane crash, and your office space has become a desert island on which they need to find ways to survive. They have to hunt around the workplace, finding items which they can use for practical purposes, or refashion into tools which can help them thrive in a hostile environment. At the end of the hunt, they will have had to come up with five survival tools, ranked in order of importance, and with an explanation of what each one is, what it can be used for, and why they simply won’t be able to live without it!

The Fantasy Dinner Party

Everyone’s got a list of people - either real or fictional, living or dead - who they’d love to get round the table, and have a good old chat with. This game is all about exploring that particular fantasy, and having the confidence and leadership abilities to be able to settle on their favourite dinner party guests, while listening and taking on board the preferences of their fellow team members.

What You Need to Do:

Split your team into groups of four, and instruct them that they are to hold a ‘fantasy dinner party’. They have fifteen minutes to decide on three guests (who can be anybody they choose), who they’d like to sit down with and talk to. They have to negotiate the guests between them, and also choose the three questions they’d love to ask each guest. One of the team members will also have to design a menu - so some delegation skills are in order, too! Bring the group back together, and present each dinner party in turn.

Mad Hatter's tea party

Leadership Exercises for Teams:
Having Fun With a Clear Purpose

All of the leadership games listed above are quick, simple, and highly effective ways to bring out the leadership qualities of your team members, and identify skills in them which may not have previously come to the fore. They’re an opportunity to open up communication, exercise teamwork abilities and problem solving skills, and have a whole lot of fun in the process. 

At Eventwise, we’re firm believers in making team improvement a thoroughly enjoyable experience. That’s why we’re constantly looking for new ways to bring out hidden talents, pull teams together, and utilise leadership workshop exercises to ensure everyone has a chance to shine. With our away days and activities, we’re helping teams up and down the country truly make the most of their members, and experience the benefits that team-building and leadership exercises can bring. Want to find out more? Get in touch, and see what we can do for you!