Dude / More Dude

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The original card came of Dude and More Dudes is, well, it's a game where you say "dude". The goal is to quickly find matches for as many of your cards as you can. To play, you say the word "dude" as you think it should be said, based on how it appears on your card. At the same time, listen to how the other players are saying the word "dude". The person who gets the most correct matches is the winner! It's absolutely hysterical, and will have you and your friends laughing uncontrollably for an entire evening.

From Toy Aisle to Team Building: this is another activity we included in our new book.

Dude, we love this game. Seriously, it will make you laugh until you cry. The word Dude can be said in many different ways, which makes it a perfect phrase to use when you are trying to teach effective communication skills, right?

When it comes to high-performance teams, effective communication is high on the list of must-have skills. When it comes to listening, we are often told to be good listeners, but not always taught to be good listeners. Effective communication requires both a great communicator and a good listener, and sometimes leaders are good at one and not the other. Communication consists of four things: Words, Body Language, Tone, and Emotion. If you were to say the phrase ‘What Are You Doing?’ with two different tones, the phrase would have a completely different meaning. For example, if I had a more joking, light tone, ‘Hey! What are you doing?!’ The person I'm communicating with would likely know I’m greeting them in a fun, lighthearted way. If someone has just done something horribly offensive towards me, my tone would be sharper and I might spark, ‘HEY! What are you doing?’ With this tone, they would definitely know I was not kidding around. The words were the exact same in both sentences. The tone was very different. This reinforces the concept that tone makes up a huge percentage of communication.

The activity we re-engineered using Dude cards is a derivative of the icebreaker activity Hog Call. In this game, participants would be given a card with an animal on it, then they would close their eyes and make the sound that the animal makes and try to find someone else in the room making the same noise. This game is an oldie-but-a-goodie and definitely infused some comedic fun into adventure-based programs for decades. It was created by Karl Rohnke and Jim Grout and was published in their book, A Small Book About Large Group Games.

Using Dude Cards instead of animal cards allows us to intentionally surface the topic of effective communication in the activity. Even though the activity is border-line goofy, we can target the debrief with questions around the importance and awareness of our tone of voice when delivering a message.

Set-Up: Create an open space for play. If you are indoors, put chairs around the perimeter of the room. If you are outside, find an open space to play that is free of debris or obstacles. Select one Dude card for each person, making sure there are matching pairs.

Facilitation Process:

  • Have the participants stand in a circle. Include yourself in the circle.
  • With your Dude cards, go around the circle and give each person a card.
  • Ask them not to share it with anyone. Make sure that you have pairs of every kind of Dude card you give out.
  • Once everyone has been given a Dude card, tell the group that they must find other people that are saying the word dude the same way they are.
  • Once everyone finds their dude family, ask them to stand together in a group so the facilitator knows they have found their dude.

 

This video highlights a group at a conference playing 'Find Your Dude'

Set-Up: Create an open space for play. If you are indoors, put chairs around the perimeter of the room. If you are outside, find an open space to play that is free of debris or obstacles. Select one Dude card for each person, making sure there are matching pairs.

 

Facilitation Process:

  • Have the participants stand in a circle. Include yourself in the circle.
  • With your Dude cards, go around the circle and give each person a card.
  • Ask them not to share it with anyone. Make sure that you have pairs of every kind of Dude card you give out.
  • Once everyone has been given a Dude card, tell the group that they must find other people that are saying the word dude the same way they are.
  • Once everyone finds their dude family, ask them to stand together in a group so the facilitator knows they have found their dude.

This video highlights a group at a conference playing 'Find Your Dude'


 

This game walks a fine line between ridiculous and educational.  If you are working with a group that already thinks that team building games are dumb, this might not be your first choice of effective communication games.  The message is still strong, but the activity itself is pretty goofy.

 

Possible Reflection Questions or Topics:

 

  • Creativity in challenging communication areas
  • Vulnerability
  • How did you find your group?
  • What was difficult about finding your group?
  • What do you think was the purpose of this game?
  • How does the tone of our voice change the message we are sending?

Why is it important to surface conversation around tone and the way we say things?

And also, there is a second set of Dude cards called More Dude. Seriously, are you laughing yet?