Building a cohesive relationship with your members has a direct impact on your organization’s initial success and longevity. Creating a strong sense of community can take many forms, from icebreakers and games in the first weeks to sitting down as a full group to discuss goals and create programs for the campus. The following are some suggestions to make your first group meeting a successful one:
- Make sure to provide plenty of opportunities for the members of your organization to learn each other’s names and get to know one another.
- Create an informal, relaxed atmosphere. This helps make your members comfortable with volunteering information and ideas, and if you maintain this atmosphere you will be more likely to receive constructive feedback when you ask for it.
- Plan and implement group projects together. Whether it’s collecting cans for a food pantry or taking on the challenges of a low-ropes course, working together in a low-stakes enterprise can create strong bonds.
- Bring food! Taking a break to eat together, even if it’s only on your first meeting, can help your new members to relax around each other and create a warm, casual atmosphere. Whether you bring homemade cookies or chips and dip, food is a sure draw to new members.
The following is a database of icebreakers for you to use with your members as a way to jumpstart teambuilding and laughter within your organization.
Do you have your own favorite icebreaker you’d love to share? Let us know about it at firstname.lastname@example.org!