Vacation In the Keys

Starter Kit for up to 5 Participants
Select Components:

Disaster strikes a group of friends on a charter trip to the Florida Keys when their 43-foot sport-fishing boat suddenly explodes. In the blink of an eye, everyone - and everything - is thrown overboard. Stranded and disoriented, the group treads water in shock as their boat quickly disappears below the surface of the water. The good news is that everyone is able to swim to shore and except for one passenger, their injuries are relatively minor. Realizing rescue efforts could take up to a week, the group must work together through their Vacation in the Keys to survive using only the supplies they pulled from the water.

HRDQ's Team Adventure Series training simulations are a popular choice for team development training. That's because they're an effective way to introduce the concept of synergy and help team members quickly develop vital group-process skills such as consensus decision making, problem-solving, communication, and conflict resolution in a nonthreatening learning environment.

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How It Works

Each adventure simulation in HRDQ's Team Adventure Series starts with a suspense-filled scenario that challenges teams to work together to escape danger with only limited resources - and each other. While most people can rest assured knowing they'll never encounter these survival situations, they do experience the similar feelings of stress and conflict that accompany everyday organizational life.
The purpose of Vacation in the Keys is to help groups understand the value of consensus decision making and learn to achieve team synergy. Following the introduction of the survival scenario listed above, participants are challenged to rank 15 salvaged items - first as individuals and then a second time as a team. Participants compare their team scores to their best individual score and expert rationale to determine if synergy was achieved.

Uses and Applications

Trainers and group developers have found many uses for traditional survival exercises, including how to:
  • Illustrate the concept of team synergy
  • "Break the ice" among new or conflicted teams
  • Give teams a nonthreatening opportunity to work together
  • Help teams practice consensus decision making
  • Improve active listening, probing, and confronting behaviors in a realistic setting
  • Train team leaders in team facilitation skills
  • Open or close a learning session
  • Introduce an organizational change
  • Interject a fun activity into an otherwise serious agenda
  • Supplement outdoor experiential learning

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this game, participants will be able to:

  • Hone group problem-solving skills using a five-step process
  • Understand the critical interpersonal skills
  • Learn how groups make decisions
  • Discover the advantages of consensus decision making
  • Learn the three elements of synergy

Product Details

Product Type: Game. The Vacation in the Keys Facilitator Guide is designed as a detailed resource, used by the trainer to deepen participants’ understanding of the concepts throughout this simulation.

Target Audience: Team members at any level, especially those who work under pressure.

Measures: Critical group-process skills such as problem-solving, communication, and conflict resolution in a nonthreatening learning environment.

Dimensions: Consensus decision making and decision making under pressure.

Time Required: Administration: 15 minutes. Workshop: two hours.

What to Order

Starter Kit: Order One Kit for Up to Five Participants & One Trainer.
Includes the Facilitator Guide and a 5-pack of Participant Guides.
Facilitator Guide: Order One Guide Per Trainer.
The comprehensive facilitator set includes everything trainers need to deliver Vacation in the Keys, including background information, administrative guidelines, a step-by-step workshop outline, expert rationale, alternative training designs, a Microsoft PowerPoint presentation, and sample participant materials. Facilitator support materials will be available to you as a digital download link in your order confirmation.
Participant Guide 5-Pack: Order One Pack for Up to Five Participants.
The Participant Guide includes the adventure scenario, pressure-sensitive scoring, background information, team worksheet, and information on how to improve team discussions.

About the Authors

The HRDQ Development Team creates soft-skills learning solutions that help to improve the performance of individuals, teams, and organizations. At HRDQ, we believe an experiential approach is the best catalyst for adult learning. Our unique Experiential Learning Model has been the core of what we do for more than 40 years. We combine the best of organizational learning theory and proven facilitation methods with an appreciation for adult learning styles, our philosophy initiates and inspires lasting change.