Page 95 Executive Marbles


5 Hula Hoops - one in the middle, the others at the compass points from the center hoop
Assorted playful items - approximately 2 - 3 times as many as participants


Get all the items from the center hoop into your own hoop.


Arrange the hoops with several feet between them (the greater the number of participants, the more space between the hula hoops)

Divide the participants into four groups. Have each group go to one of the outside hoops. Place all the items in the center hoop. Give the participants the following instructions:

  1. The object is to get all the items you see in the center hoop into your own hoop.
  2. Each person may carry only one item at a time.
  3. You may not throw items.
  4. Once the center hoop is empty, you may take items from any other hoops.
  5. You may NOT guard any of the hoops. If you are on the bottom of a pile of people, you are doing it wrong.
  6. You win by having all the items in your hoop.

Without giving the participants time to strategize, yell GO. Allow the resulting frenzy to go on about 1 - 2 minutes, then stop the activity. Tell the group that you will give them 2 minutes to strategize, then you will start round 2.

At the end of 2 minutes, start the next round. If more rounds are necessary for the participants to make the shift from competition to cooperation, continue the sequence of 1 - 2 minutes of activity and 2 minutes of strategizing.


Discuss the following issues:

  1. Futility of the work - impossible tasks
  2. Competition vs. cooperation - shifting paradigms
  3. Who is the "team"?
  4. Sabotage
  5. Communication processes
  6. Trust - Have everyone choose an object. Place a poly spot in the middle. The poly spot represents full trust in the group. Have each participant place their object close to the spot or far away from the spot based on their "trust" of the group. Ask each participant what about the group caused them to place their object where they did. Talk about the importance of trust, how trust is earned, how trust is destroyed.