How To: Host Your Own Q&A Game

WRITTEN BY Liz Hunt

At Smith Assembly, our team likes to know who our colleagues are as people. It can be hard to open up at work, but it’s easier when everyone’s doing it and it’s a fun game. We iterated the classic 20 Questions game by writing our own questions and coming up with our own rules.

Our goal was for all our colleagues to find questions in the list that would give them an opportunity to share stories about their cultures, values, and experiences no matter where they were from or how they identified. We wanted the questions to range from lighthearted to thought provoking, and to also reflect our global innovation theme. Our questions were borrowed from or inspired by a wide variety of print and online publications, so you may recognize a few of them. The game is more inclusive and promotes greater bonding if everyone answers the same questions. You can play in-person or remotely over a video call while working from home.

On 28 May 2020, we hosted a virtual Q&A Game Night with our first global innovators Estrella and Enoc. It was fun! With our favorite beverages in hand, we took turns choosing and answering a half-dozen of the questions below. It was particularly moving to discover that we all wanted our respective communities to become more inclusive and equitable (while at the same time preserving and appreciating the uniqueness of all the different local cultures).

Want to learn more about us? Check out the Q&A with Liz and the Q&A with Ta. As time goes by, we’ll also publish Q&As from our Global Innovators and Mini-Q&As from our Global Voices on our blog.

Preparing for the Q&A Game

  • Review the questions below for your team, workplace culture, and needs. Eliminate any that don’t fit, and add any that would be more appropriate or fun for your group right now.
  • Mark 2 of the questions as required. These are questions you always want asked, as their answers are particularly relevant to your workplace culture or have a history of provoking the most interesting conversations amongst your team members.

How to Play the Q&A Game

  1. This game works best with smaller groups. Larger groups can play, but may find they need to reduce the number of questions asked.
  2. Everyone should play equally, regardless of their role in the org chart.
  3. Everyone should agree to ask and answer the questions with an open mind and heart, so that they get to know others on a deeper level and allow others to get to know them on a deeper level.
  4. If there’s a game host, they go first. Otherwise, the group should ask for a volunteer or pick a person at random. Note: The person who asks questions can be the same or different in every round.
  5. The host or selected person reads the first required question aloud, then answers it. After they finish, the next person answers the same question. Then each person in the group is given an opportunity to answer that question.
  6. After everyone has shared their answer, the next required question is read aloud. The asking and answering proceed as described in Step 5.
  7. Once all the required questions have been answered, the host or selected person chooses a number at random between 1-70 (or however many questions you have). That numbered question is read aloud. The asking and answering proceed as described in Step 5.
  8. Repeat Step 7 a few times. Ideally, the game should end before people lose enthusiasm.

After the Q&A Game

Let us know how it goes! Did you learn something new about a colleague or boss? Were you surprised by your friend’s answer? Have a question we should add to our list? Share your funny zoom screenshots and anecdotes at #HumanConnection.

The Questions

'' Education, Art, & Media

  1. I most enjoyed studying...
  2. The last thing I learned that blew my mind...
  3. I wish I could learn...
  4. My favorite form of art...
  5. The most meaningful artistic expression in my culture...
  6. The best thing I’ve read or seen in the past year...
  7. A book that left a lasting impression on me...
  8. The tv series or movie with a perfect ending...
  9. The last artist I listened to on repeat...
  10. The music that always makes me dance...
  11. When I want to feel creative, I listen to...
  12. American/Canadian pop culture...

    People

  13. A person who changed my life...
  14. The teacher who influenced me to become the person I am today...
  15. The most incredible friend or family member in my life...
  16. The historical figure I most identify with...
  17. The living person I most admire...
  18. If I could have a conversation with any important or famous person (alive or deceased)...
  19. My first celebrity crush...
  20. My fictional heroes are...
  21. Three innovators I most admire right now...
  22. My family, friends, and/or pets...
  23. The role my religion and/or religious community plays in my life...

    Career

  24. The three most important tools I work with...
  25. When I’m not working, I enjoy...
  26. I earned my first “dollar”...
  27. The advice I’d give someone who wants to become an innovator...
  28. The thing that surprised me the most about my work...
  29. My favorite perk of my job...
  30. The most difficult challenge I’ve faced in my career...
  31. The most exciting, or rewarding, thing I’ve done in my career so far...
  32. The achievement, or moment in my career, I’m most proud of...
  33. The quality I most appreciate in my colleagues...
  34. The skills most needed to thrive as an innovator...
  35. I define innovation as...
  36. To be most productive, I need my work environment...
  37. The project I’ve done that’s had the biggest positive impact on my family or community...
  38. Something that would advance the visibility and careers of global innovators like me...

    Philosophical or Thought Provoking

  39. The change I’d most like to see in my community...
  40. Something Americans/Canadians could learn from my culture...
  41. American/Canadian innovators could be better allies to me and my community by...
  42. I wish someone would invent...
  43. If I could go back in time and change one thing...
  44. The most challenging obstacle I’ve overcome in my life so far...
  45. The three qualities that got me where I am today...
  46. If I could change one thing about myself, it would be...
  47. The most valuable advice I’ve ever been given...
  48. Everyone should try ... at least once in their life
  49. My perfect day would begin and end with...

    Random

  50. The biggest misconception people seem to have about my community or country...
  51. The last time I sang aloud...
  52. The last time I faced my fears...
  53. My last moment of bliss...
  54. The food I absolutely love...
  55. My favorite aroma...
  56. Something that will surprise you the most about me...
  57. The superhero power I’d most like to have...
  58. My favorite journey...
  59. On my desk/workbench...
  60. My favorite machine or invention...
  61. The one item (other than my mobile) I couldn’t live without...
  62. My most treasured possession...
  63. After a difficult day, I...
  64. As a child, I wanted to be ... when I grew up
  65. When I feel stuck creatively, the first thing I do to get unstuck...
  66. If I had 15 extra minutes each day, I would...
  67. The animal I most identify with is...
  68. If I could step into a time machine for a day, I’d...
  69. If I could bring something extinct back to life...
  70. The single thing that would most improve my quality of life...
  71. My comfort food/item/person during the pandemic...
  72. The pandemic mitigation efforts in my region have impacted and/or inspired my work by...

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