by Rollin Glaser

Groups often fail to find the solution to solvable problems because team members do not recognize the importance of their role, or they overlook the information that other members possess. Deir el-Medina is an engaging game designed to identify the various roles each team member plays during work processes and demonstrate how each role contributes to the group’s ability to accomplish goals, solve problems, and achieve success. 

How Deir el-Medina works:

Based on factual records from the Egyptian collection and The British Museum in London, Deir el-Medina asks participants to work together to solve a problem based on a realistic scenario. Each team member is given particular facts that can help solve the team’s problem. Success is determined by how well participants perform their roles in the group and process the information each team member possesses.

In group situations, individuals tend to adopt characteristic roles that can be categorized into three different types: Task Roles, Maintenance Roles, and Self-Oriented Roles. Deir el-Medina explores how the dynamics of these roles impact the group.

Deir el-Medina Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify the various roles each person plays during work processes.
  • Understand how each role contributes to overall success of the group.
  • Experience the various task and interpersonal issues that occur when people undertake a project requiring joint problem solving and decision making.

Deir el-Medina is a fun and unique way to emphasize the importance of teamwork and team roles. This game is an excellent standalone activity, or can be played as part of a team-building training program.

The Facilitator Guide contains game overview and introduction; learning goals; facilitator guidelines; training outline; preparation checklist; observer instructions; debrief and discussion questions; training design options; and a CD-ROM containing a Microsoft® PowerPoint® presentation, participant handouts, and overhead transparency masters.