Team Activity: Motivational Bingo

Posted by Kristin Arnold on May 4, 2021

Senior Vice President of Sales for Futuri Media Sophie Fry told me about this fun activity to demonstrate how people are motivated differently.  I hope I have captured her directions accurately and can’t wait to try it out!


  • For each participant, create “blank” bingo cards with nine blocks and “FREE” written in the center.


  1. Hand out the bingo cards and ask the group to think about all the sources of motivation in their work environment(s) that motivate them to perform more effectively or more efficiently.  Encourage them to identify eight different factors or things that have a positive motivational benefit for them in their job, and place one in each of the eight blank areas on their card.  You can provide prompts to spur their thinking e.g. What makes you work harder, smarter, come in earlier, stay late, take your job seriously, give your all?  (No cheating!  This is an individual activity!).
  2. When all have completed their cards, read a list of possible responses.  Tell the group that they should check off any item on their card that loosely matches the items you call out (in other words, it doesn’t have to be the same word, but implies the same idea).  As soon as you get three in a row – vertically, horizontally or diagonally, shout out BINGO!

Sophie’s List of Motivators (you can use this list or create your own!)

    • Compensation
    • Bonuses
    • Recognition from my boss
    • Awards
    • Contests
    • Recognition from my peers
    • Hitting goals
    • Accomplishments
    • Completing big projects
    • Closing big deals
    • Creating something new
    • Making something good, better
    • Support my family
    • Support the lifestyle I want
    • Earn vacation time
    • Help others grow
    • Make a significant contribution
    • Bring value to our company
    • Having ownership of my work
    • Clear expectations
    • Sense of purpose
    • Personal development
    • Self-actualization
    • A good challenge
    • Community
    • Acknowledgment
    • Duty
    • Making customers happy

3. Ask the group to share the factors they chose.  Ask them to pay attention to which factors seemed to be common, which were unique to one individual in the group, which factors seemed to get written down first on their cards. (If in a group larger than 8, you may want to have them do this in small groups.  Have one person at each table record the 3 most commonly mentioned, the 3 most unique or unusual that came up and share the results with the larger group.

4. Debrief the activity:

  • What factors are common? What are unique?
  • What did you learn through this process?

Some common learnings are:

  • It would be a mistake to assume that what is important to us is also what is important to everybody else.
  • Managing people needs to be highly individualized.
  • It’s critical to know the hot buttons, motivators, and individual style of each person who reports to you.


For more information about how to lead your team in the virtual environment, use these resources.

KRISTIN ARNOLD, MBA, CPF | Master, CSP is a high-stakes meeting facilitator and professional panel moderator.  She’s been facilitating teams of executives and managers in making better decisions and achieving greater results for over 27 years.  She is the author of the award-winning book, Boring to Bravo: Proven Presentation Techniques to Engage, Involve and Inspire Audiences to Action.  Her latest book, 123 Ways to Add Pizazz to a Panel Discussion was published in January 2021.

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KRISTIN ARNOLD, MBA, CSP, CPF|Master has been facilitating meaningful conversations between executives and managers to make better decisions and achieve extraordinary results for 25+ years. She's a leading authority on moderating panel discussions and passionate about finding the perfect olive to complement a vodka martini.

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