The Pirate Dilemma – Missions, Tactics and Planning can lead to Gold and Jewels!!!

The Pirate Dilemma is a high impact participative team building simulation that is focused on strategic planning, shared missions, communications, and collaboration.

This team-based simulation rewards flexibility and inter-team communications. Teams choose from a set of required missions and acquire information from the Commander as well as info from other teams. As participants put their plans into action, new information plays into their decision making.

The exercise includes elements of:

  • Collaboration
  • Leadership
  • Communications
  • Personal styles
  • Resource management
  • Strategic planning
  • Risk taking
  • Team motivation

The Pirate Dilemma focuses on enhancing teamwork and collaboration. They then have to put their plans into action, trusting that luck will not turn bad and their planning fails. Teams have many decisions to make in their planning, including journey choices, route they wish to travel and additional training options, intelligence and/or supply modifications. Along the way, random events occur causing teams to improvise, adapt and collaborate with other teams in order to accomplish pre-planned objectives and other goals.

Teams have 18 months, played at each month is two minutes, each month the teams have to decide where to move on a map, consequences occur, depending on weather etc. Each team forgoes rations with time at sea. The task is to sail for 18 months and redeem as much Gold and Jewels as possible, each team member has a role, task, and information critical to the success of the team and fleet!

The Pirate Dilemma is educational and engaging; it is an experiential exercise designed to generate a variety of typical team behaviors that can be readily debriefed in a number of ways. The overall goal is to accomplish all the missions; teams need to communicate amongst themselves to develop an overall plan of action.

Teams find the challenges and situation to be motivating – they face deadlines for decision-making and can quickly see the impacts of their choices on their results.

At Teambuilding International we balance objectives, challenges and interpersonal relationships and build on the normal spirit that comes from being a part of a team. The exercise is designed so that no one is left out. Competition is de-emphasized; there is no reason to not collaborate. Missions may fail. Teams will see the result of poor planning but they will all be somewhat successful.

Every team contributes a score to the overall result. Knowledge of The Pirate Dilemma is not necessary. It is a fun engaging activity, while also teaching basic themes of teamwork’s importance to success.