In this series, I am outlining activities that an inspirational speaker could use during a leadership retreat. To keep the activity relevant to the motivational speech, be sure to tie the activity into your message, theme and audience.
Here are a couple fun ideas I may use in a full day workshop:
Count from 1 to 20
Have 10 audience members come to the front of the room and stand in line facing the audience. As a group, instruct them to count from one to twenty. Anyone can say the next number in the sequence, but, if two people speak at the same time, they must start again at one.
To debrief the activity:
- Inquire if a leader emerged . . . and how did it help or hinder the group?
- Was there any technique that worked? Why?
- How is this similar to when things go wrong at work and you have to rely on others and roles aren't clear?
A Standing Ovation
As an inspirational speaker, I love the feeling of a standing ovation after a motivational speech, so I know that others will too.
Here is how the activity unfolds:
Get 8 audience members up to the front of the room and have them stand in line facing the audience.
Instruct them to one by one to step forward and receive a round of applause or standing ovation from the audience. Encourage them to enjoy the recognition and do anything they can to get more applause. Participants may act out, make funny expressions or try to encourage certain people to applaud them to increase the applause.
To add humour, tell participants that for this exercise they will thrive on recognition or wither away without it. I like to tie this in to the power of appreciation to boost morale in the workplace.
To debrief, ask people how they feel when they are in the limelight or when they are recognized. If the recognition felt hollow, why?
When I was an inspirational speaker for a franchise leadership retreat the senior leaders loved this so much they still use the standing ovation randomly at work to boost morale. Inspiration and motivation don't have to cost your organization money.