Saturday, October 27, 2007

Getting to Know You

By Kirsten Scott

After I graduated from college, I spent a couple of years working in outdoor education, doing group team building and leadership development. One of the standard parts of the day was the "get to know you game." This morning, my husband and I were brainstorming for activities for a church group he's leading, and I recalled one particular game that I always enjoyed. I thought maybe we could play it here on the blog. Sort of a virtual get to know you. :-)

So I'm going to give you the names of four animals that represent different ways people interact in groups. I'm not going to tell you what characteristics I think those animals represent. I'm interested in which one you pick and what it means to you.

Here they are:

Rhino

Lioness

Monkey

Chameleon

Cat

Your turn! Imagine yourself in a group. It could be something you do at work, with your church or book club, even here in the Bandita Lair. Which animals are you and why?








38 comments:

Gillian Layne said...

A Cat! (We have them running-what am I saying!- laying around everywhere)

I am quiet, most of the time, a bit of a loner, and love to observe. And if people care to wait on me hand and foot in the process, well--it hasn't happened yet, but a girl can dream :)

Kirsten said...

Gillian, that is the best description of a cat I have ever heard! :-) It is remarkable how they get us to wait on them, just by sitting around and looking marvelous.

Nancy said...

Kirsten, what a cool post!

I think I'd be a rhino, just because I like them. In groups, I tend to sit back and see how things are going if I don't know very many of the other people. If it becomes just milling about and fiddling, I'll tend to speak up and try to provide a direction, even if it's one the others decide to change immediately, which is fine.

I'm not a "meetings" person, especially when people are just talking, rehashing, and repeating without moving. I have no idea what that makes me--aside from occasionally frustrated. *g*

Keira Soleore said...

Lioness

I like to chat and get to know people. I always learn something cool and new that I didn't know before. I don't mind going into a room of people I have never met. Depending upon the groups, sometimes, it is a little difficult to sort of break in and join the group. But you can always choose just one person to start interacting with and then soon you're saying something that everyone is listening to.

Hey, there are five animals there, Inara. Just sayin'...

Christie Kelley said...

Definitely a cat. I'm independent and like attention only when I decide I want it. Plus there's nothing like a good cat nap.

Christie Kelley said...

and I forgot to say what a fun post this is!

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Kirsten, what a fun post! Love these games! I'd like to say a cat but sadly I'm too noisy and too boisterous and not elegant enough. Sigh. I'd like to be the lioness but I suspect I'm either a monkey or a chameleon. I sure pick up accents quickly!

jo robertson said...

What a fun getting-to-know-you activity, Kirsten!

I think I'm like a cat too, mainly because I'm so danged independent, sometimes too much for my own good LOL.

They're graceful and mysterious (which I'm NOT, but wouldn't mind being) and they're soooo clean!

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Gillian, I'm passing you the golden rooster. That dang gladiator has pulled down the henhouse and now I can't get him out of the pool!

Joan said...

Fun post, Kirsten!

Hmmmm...I'm more lioness with underlying monkey. :-)

I'm a lioness for all the reasons Kiera gave PLUS I am ferocious and passionate when defending my (or an underdogs)beliefs or integrity.

Monkey because if I need to I can be playful and....if the need is there...devious. But only for a good cause VBG

Anna Sugden said...

Cool exercise, Kirsten.

I'd say now, I'm a cat. I like to do things on my terms - probably because I'm shy and like to see how the land lies before stepping on it. I can sit on the periphery or be right in the thick of things. I can meow cutely or hiss and spit *grin*. And I'm very good at chasing my tail!

In the business world I was definitely a lioness - hear me roar! (some called me a Rottweiler ... those were the days when women had to be aggressive to be taken seriously ... oh dear showing my age again!)

Susan Seyfarth said...

Hi, Kirsten!

I'm going to go with Lioness because from what I've learned from repeated viewings of the Lion King, lionesses are responsible for the pride's food. That's my day in a nutshell.

If I'm not feeding my family, I'm cleaning up after the eating, or stalking food for us to eat (aka grocery shopping.) And I kinda like that. Cooking for somebody you love, actually feeding their body is (to me, anyway) one of the simplest & most sincere forms of expressing that love. It's literally filling that person up.

I love hosting dinner parties & am always buying cook books. Funny thing, though. I'm not a particlarly good cook. Maybe my family EATS my food out of the same love that prompts me to cook it. :-)

Susan

Keira Soleore said...

By Susan's definition of lioness, I'm a monkey, because I'd be the one to grab the food off the table and run.

Gillian Layne said...

Whoo-hoo, a golden rooster!

And I only had to be awake at one o'clock in the afternoon to get it (grin).

Kirsten said...

Nancy,

I tend to think of rhinos as blundering into a group and being rather bullheaded--you sound like the opposite of that!

I also find myself frustrated in meeting that go nowhere! You know, there are process people and action people and I suppose I'm the latter--maybe you too?

Kirsten said...

Keira, it sounds like you would be the perfect person to invite to a dinner party! You'd charm everyone with your bonnet and ability to engage them in conversation, and then steal all their food while they weren't looking...

(and I was wondering who would bust me on the four animals thing...it was early in the morning, what can I say?)

Kirsten said...

Mmm, I'm with you, Christie (and Gillian!). I definitely like to walk away when I need my space, yet am unafraid to shove my head under someone's hand when I want to be petted! :-)

Helen said...

I think I am a bit of a chamelian if I know the people in the group I am talkative and positive but if it is a group of people I don't know well I am really very shy. At home I am probably the Lioness in charge the organizer makes sure everything is done.
I think I am a person who cares and always tries to be positive and I always like to have fun but I also really like time to myself here and there.
Great post Kirsten lots of fun.
Have Fun
Helen

Kirsten said...

Foanna, you would make a charming monkey! :-) You know, I think monkeys get a bum rap--they're brilliant, nimble, mischevious, and a little bit naughty. I think that describes you to a T!

Kirsten said...

It would be nice to cultivate a bit of that air of mystery, wouldn't it, Jo? But you save it for your books, I think. And I suspect all of us writers are part cat. We must like being independent and living in our own little worlds, or we wouldn't be able to do what we do, right?

Kirsten said...

Okay, Joanie, why is it that I can picture that little grin on your face as you say you are a bit of a monkey? I suspect it's more than a bit...but you've obviously got more than a little of the lioness in you as well. I don't think I'd like to get on your bad side. :-)

Roar!

Kirsten said...

Anna, I'm still in the business world, and I'm not sure things have changed all that much. (grrr) I love how you describe checking out the lay of the land before you rush in. My first born is the same way--he likes to figure out exactly how the game is played before he jumps in. Unlike me, who just barrels in like the rhino and breaks all the rules!

But I'm wondering...what kind of animal loves her shoes as much as you?!

Kirsten said...

Susan, did you ever notice that even though the lioness does all the work, the lion get all the attention? That's what I think of when I think of the lioness--the quiet force behind it all who protects the pride, brings home dinner, and raises the babies, all while Mr. Gorgeous is combing his mane.

And I've had your food, dear--you're a great cook! :-)

Kirsten said...

Helen, I have a lot of respect for the chameleons--they have to be able to understand where everyone else in the room is coming from so they can blend in. And there's no doubt you are a cheerful, happy person! We're so glad to have you hanging around the Lair! :-)

Thanks for playing my game!

Helen said...

Thanks Kirsten I love being here you Guys are so much fun with such interesting topics .
Have Fun
Helen

Suzanne Welsh said...

Okay, without reading anyone else's post I pick the Lioness...Here's why:

I'm protective and loyal to my friends or family, and tend to congregate with them first. But I also like to meet new people, find out things about them, so I will venture into places and try to talk to groups of people who seem open and friendly. I am NOT the life of the party, but I can be one with the right people. IF I wander into a group of people talking bad about a friend or family member the claws come out and I won't hesitate to make my mark. :)

Kate Carlisle said...

Hi Inara - how fun is this!

Depending on the group, I'm likely to be either a chameleon--I'll just sit in the back and don't anybody notice me, please--or a monkey, jabbering nonsense and swinging from trees and wondering where the party is!

I usually start out as the chameleon and people think, isn't she quiet and well-behaved? Then we all get to know each other and eventually they're thinking, can't she shut up once in a while?? LOL

Kirsten said...

Suz, I also love a party--when I know everyone there! I'm NOT good at small talk, or circulating in big groups where I don't know people. My husband loves that--he really enjoys meeting new people. I wish I had that skill.

Maybe Keira could teach me!

I will remember to steer clear of your claws, Ms. Lioness!

Kirsten said...

Kate, I can imagine you're pretty good at the chameleon routine. I would love to see you really get going with the chatter, though. Maybe in San Francisco at a Bandita Bash we'll start you talking and see what happens!

Keira Soleore said...

See Kirsten, V.Anna was right in choosing the cat for herself. She's classy and like the cat makes sure she's well-groomed, shoes included.

And maybe I'll teach you how to spy your opportunity, make a grab for it, and run with it. I might not teach you how to make nice. All depends... :)

Btw, where's Caren. I want to know who she think she is.

Nancy said...

Kirsten, I do want the process to lead to action. Repetitive stewing over the process is my idea of a nightmare meeting! I'm with you there.

But I do like rhinos. I have a stuffed one from the Central Park Zoo (where there aren't any actual ones that I recall). And when they get moving, they're very hard to stop. *g*

Anna Sugden said...

Kirsten - given my two cats ... they love my shoes ... probably still a cat!

Aww Keira - you're so sweet. You're a classy lady yourself!

Kirsten said...

Ooo, Keira's not ready to make nice? She's tougher than her bonnet might suggest!! :-)

doglady said...

Late to the party again!! And an Animal House party at that!! Hmmm, I can be a bit of a chameleon in that I tend to fit in everywhere. I am very adaptable and have been to every kind of event, made lots of friends and generally had a great time. From a bar - b - que in Mississippi at a little hole in the wall juke joint where I sang with B.B.King to a series of Fasching Balls in Austria ending with a Mardi Gras ball and banquet in Vienna, I have had a really good time and never felt uncomfortable at all. So does that make me a chameleon or a bit of a monkey??

Keira Soleore said...

Pam, it would take the entire zoo to characterize you.

DownUnderGirl said...

Yes, this is a great post.

I think I'm a bit like Foanna - a monkey and a chameleon.
I like to crack a few jokes and set people at ease but I think I'm good at judging people's moods and going with the flow of a group too.

Amy

Caren Crane said...

Sorry, guys, I totally missed this. I was visiting my mama and just got back to town! Keira, I am most definitely the lioness. Guarding the cubs and the home front, tracking and hunting, seeing the provisions are laid in and the perimeter is secure. I may actually be a bit more like a tiger, but that wasn't a choice. *g*

MsHellion said...

Chameleon. (I don't like conflict--I'd rather blend in and ignore the situation and avoid trouble.) Also gives you good observer privileges.

Though I have some real Monkey ways about me, I'm sure. I swing from things and laugh a lot--and I'm quite adorable.

I will scan below to see if you explained what they all meant.