Icebreakers or warm-ups are used to create comfort and relaxation among group members and, sometimes, to introduce the purpose of the meeting. Opening up the right side of the brain (the creative, un-linear part) can be a great way to start a meeting.
Here is one icebreaker to accomplish this:
Give a blank sheet of paper to each participant. Have each person put his/her name on the back but ask people not to look at the back until the end of the exercise. Ask the group to think about an image (picture, movie, action, vision, music, anything that comes to mind) that relates to the reason they have been brought together today.
Take a few seconds to allow time for participants to think about the task. Then have them draw a small part of the mental image they have created. For example, if someone thought of a bird, he or she might draw part of a wing.
Have participants pass the sheet to the next person on the right so everyone has a neighbor's drawing. Each person can add another line to the drawing in an effort to complete it. Again, pass the drawing to the right and repeat the exercise. Keep it going until the sheet is returned to its original owner.
Debrief the exercise by asking people to share how much the final drawing resembles their original image (or not). The discussion can go many ways. You might have everyone share how it felt to create a group drawing. Find a way to relate this discussion to the task at hand. For example, ask participants to look at the drawing in his or her hand and use that to generate an idea on the topic. Alternatively, you could even talk, as a group, about how the work of the organization reflects everyone putting an individual touch on the product or services.
If you try this, let me know how it goes!