The Push Pin Challenge

I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free – Michelangelo

What can you do with a push pin?
Push it into a wall? Good. What is the second right answer?
Pin up some pages? Ok.
Prick someone? Ouch.

A push pin is a useful device that we encounter every day in our offices. But come to think about it, there are pretty limited things that we think we can do with them. And yet, their colorful and handy nature begs to be used in other more creative ways. Like in a team activity that creates art for example!

What if we gave your team thousands of such pins in multiple colours? Could you put it all together to create a beautiful mural?

FocusU invites you to the fascinating Push Pin Challenge!

PushPin Picture 1
PushPin Picture 2

The team enters the room to find platters full of colourful push pins lining up the walls of the room. There is an immediate buzz in the room that, “Something interesting is cooking.” Soon participants find themselves in smaller teams entrusted with a canvas and a whole collection of brightly coloured push pins – red, green, blue, yellow, white and more.

The challenge for the teams is apparently simple, but ten minutes into the activity reality sets in. “Not so easy as it looks”, we hear people murmuring. Soon teams realize that if they are to succeed, they need to work as one team leveraging every single individual. Packing a canvas with push pins where the location of each pixel can make a difference is as much grunt work as it is a skill. Individual teams working on each canvas, often cannot completely decipher where it is leading to.

As the clock ticks on, natural team dynamics comes into play. Some people embrace the effort needed. Some direct it. Some act as cheer leaders. While some help the team keep an eye on time and quality of execution.

The challenge is set up in two levels – one calling for intra team collaboration and another calling for inter team collaboration. All the while the energy is kept at a high by FocusU Facilitators who ensure that teams continue to work at a breathless pace as they head towards the final whistle.

When all the canvases come together in a rousing finale – a larger than life image stares out of the creation to the utter amazement of the participants. We often hear gasps of disbelief as participants take a few steps back to take in what they have themselves created together as a team.

Truly, what can you not do with a humble push pin?

A few key parameters:


Is the Push Pin Challenge right for your team?
This activity is perfect for small to large teams where you would want to highlight the fact that a team succeeds only when every single person in it pitches in positively. It can also be used to highlight a few other key lessons:
• If each function does a great job – the team will achieve its goals
• The handshakes between different functions has to be perfect
• The need for everyone in a team to have a single vision in mind
• Taking ownership for an outcome to achieve the overall goal

Can your team conquer The Push Pin Challenge?

Contact Us today - we will be glad to meet up and discuss the possibilities for your team!