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50 Activites for Developing Management Skills, Volume 2

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Each volume includes carefully developed management training activities with:

Training Objectives; Detailed Trainers Notes and Guidelines; Reproducible Participant Materials;

Volume 2 skills focus on: Meetings; Discipline; Leadership; Providing Feedback;
Volume 2 activities include: Agendas and Meetings; The Indecisive Manager; Behavior and Problem Solving; Managing at a Distance; Sharing and Explaining

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1 Action Plan

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1 Action Plan

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

This activity is suitable for one or both of the following:

To encourage individuals to review what they feel they have learned from a session or course

To help individuals commit themselves to some sort of action plan for transferring learning points on the job

Participants are given time toward the end of a session or course to think about what they have learned and what they are going to do about it when they are back at work. It is important that this time be made available and that quiet areas be set aside where individuals can work on their own.

Trainers should be available to give help to participants who require it. This type of review can remain personal and confidential to the individual.

TIME

Allow 30 minutes for this activity. It can be combined with a break period so that the atmosphere is informal and participants feel relaxed.

GROUP SIZE

Participants work individually.

PHYSICAL

RESOURCES

1. Space for individuals to spread out and work without interruption

 

2 Agendas and Meetings

PDF

2 Agendas and Meetings

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

TIME

GROUP SIZE

SPECIAL

ROLES

PHYSICAL

RESOURCES

PRE-COURSE

WORK

This activity is suitable for any or all of the following:

To develop skills in conducting meetings

To develop skills in attending and contributing to meetings

To investigate group behavior

This activity provides a basic format for analyzing a meeting leader’s ability.

It can be used in conjunction with Activity 32 as a way of reviewing it.

Closed-circuit television can be used to record and provide feedback on individual and group behavior.

Allow at least 1 hour for setting up and conducting the meeting and 45 minutes for the review.

Groups of 7 to 10 participants will provide a variety of problems to be managed by the person leading the meeting. A group of this size will also work well with Activity 32. Trainers should feel free to have smaller groups if it is important or particularly relevant for small group meetings to be conducted.

Decide whether you want to appoint leaders or allow participants to volunteer.

 

3 Approaches to Situations

PDF

3 Approaches to Situations

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

TIME

GROUP SIZE

SPECIAL

ROLES

PHYSICAL

RESOURCES

PRE-COURSE

WORK

This activity is suitable for any or all of the following:

To discuss the effects of different leadership styles on a range of situations

To explore group communication skills

To investigate advantages and disadvantages of different approaches

This activity requires a group of people to draw from their own experiences the effectiveness of different ways of approaching “problem situations.” It provides a forum for majority and minority views as both are to be recorded and expressed afterward.

Allow at least 1½ hours for the activity and its review. You should extend the time if you intend to coach and counsel people on their approach in addition to general discussion.

Groups of 3 to 6 participants are suggested.

Decide whether you want to appoint leaders or allow participants to volunteer.

Decide whether you want to appoint observers or allow participants to volunteer.

 

4 Back at Work

PDF

4 Back at Work

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

This activity is suitable for any or all of the following:

To encourage participants to identify how they are going to apply what they have learned at the course back at work

To help participants commit themselves to some type of action plan

To show how participants can help each other with their action plans

Participants are given time toward the end of a session or course to think about what they have learned and what they are going to do about it when they are back at work. It is important that quiet areas be set aside for participants to work on their own.

Participants are then asked to pair up to see how they can help each other when they are back at work.

Trainers should be available to give help to participants who require it.

TIME

GROUP SIZE

PHYSICAL

Allow up to 45 minutes for this activity. It can be combined with a break period so that the atmosphere is informal and participants feel relaxed.

Participants work individually at first and then in pairs.

 

5 Bear Essentials

PDF

5 Bear Essentials

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

TIME

GROUP SIZE

SPECIAL

ROLES

PHYSICAL

RESOURCES

PRE-COURSE

WORK

This activity is suitable for any or all of the following:

To analyze teamwork and leadership style

To explore team communication skills

To review planning, organizing, monitoring and controlling skills

To study problem solving and decision making

To investigate creativity

This activity requires a team of people to use their resources to make a teddy bear. The bear must have arms that can be moved and must be as attractive as possible.

Allow 1 hour and 20 minutes for the activity and its review.

Groups of 4 to 7 participants are suggested. It is best with more than one team working in a competitive mode.

Decide whether you want to appoint leaders or to allow participants to volunteer.

Decide whether you want to appoint observers or to allow participants to volunteer.

1.

A separate working area for each team

2.

One copy of Handout 5.1 for each leader

3.

Ten sheets of paper approximately 17” x 22” for each team

 

6 Behavior and Problem Solving

PDF

6 Behavior and Problem Solving

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

This activity is suitable for any or all of the following:

To investigate behavior in meetings

To develop skills in conducting meetings

To develop skills in attending and contributing to meetings

To investigate group behavior

This activity is designed to give participants the opportunity to analyze behavior in a problem-solving situation. A short meeting is held on the subject of incentives and is filmed on closed-circuit television. The participants then watch the film and record under particular headings the different types of behavior they observe. The trainer can then lead a discussion on what constitutes helpful behavior in problem-solving situations.

TIME

Allow 20 minutes for the meeting and 45 minutes for the review.

GROUP SIZE

Groups of 7 to 10 participants will provide a variety of problems.

SPECIAL

ROLES

PHYSICAL

RESOURCES

PRE-COURSE

WORK

Decide whether you want to appoint leaders or allow participants to volunteer.

 

7 Clerks OK

PDF

7 Clerks OK

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

TIME

GROUP SIZE

SPECIAL

ROLES

PHYSICAL

RESOURCES

PRE-COURSE

WORK

This activity is suitable for any or all of the following:

To analyze teamwork and leadership style

To explore team communication skills

To explore methods of monitoring and control

To practice instructional skills

To investigate team behavior

This activity requires a leader to set up a manual alphabetical card index system to record personal data on a group of individuals, and a method of getting the team to complete the cards in an accurate and consistent way.

Allow 1 hour and 45 minutes for the activity and its review.

Groups of 4 to 7 participants are suggested. It is best with more than one team in a competitive mode.

Decide whether you want to appoint leaders or to allow participants to volunteer.

Decide whether you want to appoint observers or to allow participants to volunteer.

1.

A separate working area for each team

2.

One copy of Handout 7.1 for the leader of each team

3.

 

8 Collage Introductions

PDF

8 Collage Introductions

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

TIME

GROUP SIZE

SPECIAL

ROLES

PHYSICAL

RESOURCES

This activity is suitable for any or all of the following:

As an icebreaker early in the course

To analyze teamwork and leadership style

To explore team communication skills

To review planning, organizing, monitoring, and managing skills

This activity requires a team of people to use the resources provided to design and make a collage on a theme of their choice. In addition, they have to write a poem of at least two verses. The theme and message of the collage must be self-evident from the display and the poem. It is usually more suitable in the early part of a course.

Allow 1¼ hours for the activity and its review.

Groups of 4 to 7 participants are suggested. It lends itself to involvement of more than one team in a sharing mode rather than a competitive mode.

Decide whether you want to appoint leaders or to allow participants to volunteer.

Decide whether you want to appoint observers or to allow participants to volunteer.

 

9 Communication Keys

PDF

9 Communication Keys

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

TIME

GROUP SIZE

SPECIAL

ROLES

PHYSICAL

RESOURCES

PRE-COURSE

WORK

This activity is suitable for any or all of the following:

To look at problems involved with having a large team

To explore the morale and motivation issues of managing a large team

To analyze teamwork and leadership styles

To explore team communication skills

To investigate team behavior

This activity requires a large team to analyze an article and verbally communicate the key points to another team who have not seen the article.

The idea is to provide the leader with a team that is too large for the job.

They can later discuss, based on their own experience, the problems of how to keep everyone involved and interested.

Allow 50 minutes for the activity and its review.

Groups of 8 to 10 participants are suggested so that there are too many people to make participation easy. There should be at least two teams.

Decide whether you want to appoint leaders or allow participants to volunteer.

 

10 Conference Organization

PDF

10 Conference Organization

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

TIME

GROUP SIZE

SPECIAL

ROLES

PHYSICAL

RESOURCES

PRE-COURSE

WORK

This activity is suitable for any or all of the following:

To investigate planning and organizing skills

To analyze teamwork and leadership style

To explore team communication skills

To review problem solving and decision making

To study team behavior

This activity requires a team of people to plan and prepare the organization of a conference for a local organization. They have to present a written report to the management of the local organization for financial approval.

Allow at least 1½ hours for the activity and its review.

Groups of 3 to 7 participants can take part. Groups should work in competition with each other to simulate competing bids for the job.

Decide whether you want to appoint leaders or allow participants to volunteer.

Decide whether you want to appoint observers or allow participants to volunteer.

1.

A separate working area for each team

2.

One copy of Handout 10.1 for each leader

 

11 Delegation Decisions

PDF

11 Delegation Decisions

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

TIME

GROUP SIZE

SPECIAL

ROLES

PHYSICAL

RESOURCES

PRE-COURSE

WORK

This activity is suitable for any or all of the following:

To explore the principles of delegation

To act as a base from which to discuss the problems involved in delegating

To investigate problem solving and decision making

This activity requires a group of people to determine what factors should be taken into account when delegating tasks. This activity can be used as the starting point for a whole module on the subject of delegation, especially if problems particularly relevant to the participants are discussed.

Allow at least 45 minutes for the activity and review.

Groups of 3 to 4 participants are suggested. It is best with more than one group so that contrasting approaches and ideas can be explored.

Decide whether you want to appoint leaders or allow participants to volunteer.

Decide whether you want to appoint observers or allow participants to volunteer.

1.

A separate working area for each group

 

12 Developing Management Skills

PDF

12 Developing Management Skills

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

TIME

GROUP SIZE

SPECIAL

ROLES

PHYSICAL

RESOURCES

PRE-COURSE

WORK

CONDUCTING

THE ACTIVITY

This activity is suitable for one or both of the following:

To investigate some of the problems in developing management skills

To look at advantages and disadvantages of some methods of training

This activity requires participants to list the advantages and disadvantages of on-the-job coaching versus off-the-job training as methods of developing management skills in subordinates. Participants then pool their ideas through a trainer-led discussion.

Allow up to 15 minutes for preparatory work in groups and allow at least another 30 minutes for subsequent review and discussion.

Groups of 6 to 12 participants are suggested.

Decide whether to appoint leaders or to allow participants to volunteer.

1.

Seating and layout conducive to a meeting

2.

One copy of Handout 12.1 for each leader

3.

Flipchart and markers

4.

Pens, pencils, erasers, paper

1.

Choose an application from the list above.

 

13 Differences in Managerial Jobs

PDF

13 Differences in Managerial Jobs

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

This activity is suitable for any or all of the following:

To encourage job self-assessment

To discover similarities and differences with peers

To encourage sharing of information

Participants are asked to identify to what extent certain factors play a role in their jobs. Trainers can opt to write up everyone’s results for all to see and discuss. It can be used as a very gentle, non-threatening activity fairly early on in a course or it can be used as a more powerful method of stimulating discussion for experienced managers.

If the group has managers from a range of companies and functional areas, then discussions can revolve around organizational differences. If the group has managers from the same functional area of the same organization, then discussions revolve around differences in their varying personal approaches.

TIME

GROUP SIZE

SPECIAL

ROLES

PHYSICAL

RESOURCES

PRE-COURSE

WORK

Allow 40 minutes for the activity and its review. Allow 10 minutes for the participants to consider the questions individually, 15 minutes for small group analysis, and 15 minutes for whole group discussion of the key points.

 

14 Exploration

PDF

14 Exploration

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

This activity is suitable for any or all of the following:

To act as an icebreaker in the early part of a course

To explore common fears and worries

To help integrate newcomers into an existing group

To act as an introduction to motivation and leadership of new groups

This activity requires participants to explore their own views on dealing with newly formed groups of people. It is a supportive way of encouraging participants to talk about fears and worries that they may not wish to express in a normal classroom situation.

This activity provides you with a very flexible framework for exploring any number of issues by varying the wording of what you want participants to discuss.

TIME

GROUP SIZE

SPECIAL

ROLES

PHYSICAL

Allow at least 45 minutes for the activity and its review.

Participants are asked to work in groups of 4, so it is helpful if the total number of participants involved is a multiple of 4.

Representatives are chosen by group members to read the items on their lists.

 

15 Getting to Know You

PDF

15 Getting to Know You

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

TIME

This activity is suitable for any or all of the following:

To serve as an icebreaker

To develop trust and understanding with a colleague

To discover similarities and differences with others

To encourage sharing of information

Participants spend a short time reflecting on the main activities of their job, the changes expected during the next year, things they find difficult about their current job, and differences in what their bosses and their subordinates expect of them. They then join with another participant to exchange ideas and look for factors that account for similarities or differences. It can be an effective way of getting a pair to get to know each other. This relationship can then be put to good use when more personal feelings or worries need to be exchanged later in the course.

Allow at least 10 minutes for the participants to consider the questions individually; at least 20 minutes for discussion in pairs; and at least 15 minutes for whole group discussion of the key points.

 

16 Hunt and Find

PDF

16 Hunt and Find

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

TIME

GROUP SIZE

SPECIAL

ROLES

PHYSICAL

RESOURCES

PRE-COURSE

WORK

This activity is suitable for any or all of the following:

To serve as an icebreaker or as preparation for more serious teamwork

To analyze teamwork and leadership style

To explore team communication skills

To review planning, organizing, monitoring, and controlling skills

This activity requires a team of people to find a variety of items, which have been assigned point values. The team earning the highest number of points wins. It is an enjoyable way for participants to get to know each other and learn about their own strengths and weaknesses.

Allow an hour for the activity and its review.

Groups of 4 to 6 participants are suggested. It is best with more than one team in a competitive mode.

Decide whether you want to appoint leaders or to allow participants to volunteer.

Decide whether you want to appoint observers or to allow participants to volunteer.

1.

A separate working area for each team

 

17 I Would Like to Learn About…

PDF

17 I Would Like to Learn About…

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

This activity is suitable as part of a pre-course meeting to find out those aspects of management that participants are most interested in learning about.

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

Before the course begins, participants are asked to think about the management topics on which they would most like to focus. Some suggestions are given, but participants should be encouraged to add ideas of their own. This helps participants focus on issues that are important to them and gives trainers an opportunity to modify a course to suit the particular group of participants.

TIME

Allow participants to have a copy of Handout 17.1 at least 24 hours before being asked to give their feedback.

PHYSICAL

RESOURCES

PRE-COURSE

WORK

CONDUCTING

THE ACTIVITY

1.

An informal and comfortable setting

2.

One copy of Handout 17.1 for each participant

3.

Pens and paper

Decide on how this part of the pre-course meeting will take place and how it will fit in with anything else being discussed at that meeting.

 

18 The Indecisive Manager

PDF

18 The Indecisive Manager

Trainer’s Notes

APPLICATIONS

GENERAL

DESCRIPTION

TIME

This activity is suitable for any or all of the following:

To analyze different approaches to difficult situations

To plan and prepare the objectives of a one-to-one meeting

To focus on what specific action you require from others

This activity requires participants to decide what action and results they want to achieve from a meeting with their boss. It can be used as preparation for role play or as preparation for some real situation that they must deal with.

The emphasis is to think first about what you want to achieve before choosing the means of achieving it.

Allow 40 minutes for the activity and its review.

GROUP SIZE

It is best to have between 6 and 12 participants working in pairs.

PHYSICAL

RESOURCES

1.

A separate working area for each pair

2.

One copy of Handout 18.1 for each participant

3.

One copy of Handout 18.2 for each participant

4.

Pens, pencils, erasers, paper

PRE-COURSE

WORK

1.

Choose an application from the list above.

 

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