Reducing the stress level in a team – use this icebreaker exercise!

One of the key challenges during my career was how to manage a team successfully, without stress, having active discussions, encourage learning and productivity and making work fun. As a young leader I started out by thinking I had all the responsibility for how the team was functioning. Later I understood it is a team effort to get things moving. Here comes one of my first thoughts about productivity by reducing stress in a team.

What kind of stress is there in a working environment?

Many times stress is related both to personal as well as professional matters. Our personal lives affect our jobs and we bring job related stress into our personal lives. In addition, we are affected by the surrounding world and the bleak future media portrays in many cases. As a manager of a team my job is affected if the level of stress is constantly high. It should be in my interest to keep the energy level on top and implement a positive attitude to the work to be done.

Why can this hinder team productivity?

A constant level of stress and anxiety over a long period of time will make people give up on their desire to do a great job. In addition team productivity is affected by reducing the time and effort to help each other out. Professional stress is often caused by unclear goals and a culture without space for joint learning and development. In addition, we all live in a world where unexpected events may occur. We all need to accept that personal matters may affect our work at times and be supportive about it.

How can you reduce stress and ignite positive energy?

As  a manager I try to work with my team by defining clear roles & responsibilities and goals for the whole team and each team member. This is done every 6 months. I also run a team meeting every other week with the purpose to align the team around our journey and goals, decide on actions and do follow-up.  

In addition, I run one to one meetings every other week with all team members. The purpose is to be there for the team and get an update on what is cooking and to help re-prioritize if necessary. It is my job as a team leader to make sure we have a clear purpose and a path to follow – then the rest will be much easier.

Rosebud Note! As a manager you have to leave your own stress behind and have time to listen between the lines and understand. Practice and you will see how much more productive your team will get!

Icebreaker Exercise

Use this icebreaker exercise in the beginning of your team meeting.

Step 1: Start the meeting by letting everybody in the team think of the following questions 2-3 minutes

  • What am I happy about?
  • What worries me?
  • What will I do after this meeting?

Step 2: Go around the table and let everybody speak 3-5 mins by answering the questions. Do not interrupt or judge, just listen respectfully. 

Step 3: Move into your standard agenda and you will have a much better perspective of how to work and solve problems together!

Note! It might take some time to learn how to keep the time. Do not stress, it takes time to learn new habits.

Rosebud Ventures has facilitated numerous CEOs and founders and their teams to start working in an efficient and fun way. If you wish to know more about the Rosebud tools & methods please visit our website: 




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