Our Collaboration Journey exercise is based on our Square Wheels cartoons. We have sold this game since 2004 and have received great reactions from customers because of its easy of use, impact and flexibility. It is fun and fast and generates predictable behavior.

The exercise involves and engages tabletops of 5 to 6 people in a collective problem solving situation.

Two versions of this game available. One has dice and has some impact of luck (The Simple Version or CJ 1) and the other has a more complicated design that allows for table-to-table comparisons of results (The Complex Version or CJ2)

The Collaboration Journey allows a team of 3 to 6 players plan and execute a journey forward, making a series of collective and collaborative decisions that influence each other’s results as well as overall outcome. It’s designed to be fun, fast, and engaging.

The game has evolved from our series of Square Wheels illustrations about how organizations and individuals really work together to impact productivity and performance. The session can start with an overview using the illustrations to set the stage for the collaborative journey or you can just play the game and land back on the metaphor later in your training, if you wish.

Debriefing can focus on themes of shared goals, communications, planning, teamwork, collaboration and competition, depending on your desired outcomes.

The exercise is straightforward:
Move the Wagons to the Customer.

On each round, players must look ahead and planning their moves toward reaching the top through their individual and collective efforts. As they progress, players improve the wagons by adding Round Wheels. The benefits of teamwork and planning impact performance. Points are obtained by reaching the goal and completing the exercise quickly.

The simple elegance of the game structure allows collaboration to optimize progress; some degree of motivating competition between players is possible and likely. Since the first wagon to arrive gets more points than the others and because the route is more difficult towards the end (allowing only 2 teams to pass through the constraints, some degree of “my wagon first” will often occur. Competition tends to suboptimize results.

In CJ 1, our simple game, each table rolls dice to acquire round wheels, so a degree of luck influences tabletop results. In CJ 2. there is a more complex process of movement that requires decisions on the part of each player during each round of play. In CJ2, the scoring allows for each table to compare their results to the other tables as well as to compare their first play results with a much faster replay.

Both CJ games support the collaboration between individuals to optimize results, while individual competition would allow one individual to optimize personal results at the expense of the other players.

As in the “accidental adversaries archetype” framework, the first occurrence of competitiveness often generates reciprocity from the other players. The group then norms more toward competitiveness and aggression and may becoming more competitive over time. It is also possible for players to realize what is happening and choose to change to a more collaborative posture. Overall, the best of positive collaborative intentions can be influenced by individual desires and competition for results while performance-focused discussions during play may moderate this. This makes for a most interesting and fruitful discussion in what can be a very flexible debriefing.

Your debriefing can focus on interpersonal interactions and communications, thinking styles, themes of collaboration and shared goals, tendencies to compete and succeed and a variety of other themes. The dynamics will generate a discussion of choice and choices for performance improvement and can be linked to a variety of thinking styles or “personality” instruments such as DiSC, MBTI, HBDI or Information Sorting Styles (NLP) tools that are available. This is a powerful, interactive, 90-minute structured team building simulation with a very flexible debriefing framework.

Two versions of the game are available.

Both sell complete for $149 USD each and include a facilitator's toolkit of the Square Wheels illustrations and worksheets and are designed to enable a discussion of the issues of communications, planning, and collaboration.

You can print your own game materials or order complete sets of game boards, cards, dice, etc. for a one-time cost of $30 per table (6 players). All materials are reusable.

Click here to go to our main shopping cart for Collaboration Journey Games

Download a pdf file of the Simple version of The Collaboration Journey game by clicking here

Download a pdf file of the Complex version of The Collaboration Journey game by clicking here

You can play this exercise with any number of tabletops simultaneously; there is no upper limit to the number of players and you can choose to use groups of 3 to 6 people playing on each game board. Facilitation is easy.

If you like Square Wheels, you will love how well this works. The Introduction and play takes about 60 minutes. A replay takes about 10 minutes. Debriefing can go on forever!


And we will guarantee your complete satisfaction or your money back.

Click Here to email Scott and find out more about this exercise