Survival Situation Answers

The Power of Collaboration: How working together constructively in teams can promote synergy and lead to high quality solutions on Survival Simulations as well as effective solutions to problems that come up in the workplace.


Welcome to the Survival Situation Answers Page for your team development and group collaboration exercise.

One of the questions most frequently asked is “why are survival simulations, which seem to be unrelated to business challenges, used for team building in organizations?” Part of the answer is these exercises either ensure that all team members have about the same level of knowledge about the artificial situation (not very much!) or that the true expertise of different members is uncertain. This means that the quality of group discussions is particularly important. Additionally, by having team members complete the exercise individually and then as a team, the difference between the quality of their individual solutions and the team’s solution can be calculated. This provides a real measure of the group’s effectiveness in working as a team—and reveals the importance of good interpersonal and rational processes. In the survival situation you’re facing, you and your team members will need to work together and share information to successfully solve the problem, rank order the items, and survive a challenging and dangerous situation. Working constructively with others as a team is essential to developing an effective solution (i.e., one that is of high quality and accepted by members).

This team-building exercise will enable you to learn how well you and your team members work together, experience how interaction styles within the team lead to (or detract from) solution quality and acceptance, and how you can work together more effectively as a team. Therefore, instead of Googling for survival answers, please work through the exercise with your team, develop your own individual and team solutions, and wait for your facilitator or instructor to provide you with the Expert’s Ranking. 

Diverse Perspectives and Improved Communication 

Benefits of constructive group processes, a diverse range of perspectives, and open communication within a team 

Here are 3 key benefits of collaborating and interacting effectively with others in a team exercise: 

  1. Diverse Perspectives: Working with a team allows for a diverse range of perspectives and ideas to be brought to the table. Each team member brings their unique set of skills, experiences, and knowledge to the exercise, which can lead to creative solutions and new approaches to solving problems.
  2. Improved Communication: Constructive interaction styles within a team entails open and clear communication. Team members can ask questions, share and build on each other’s ideas, and provide feedback to one another. In contrast to more Defensive styles, this ensures a supportive environment where everyone can contribute and feel heard.
  3. Participation & Accountability: Fully participating means that each member is committed to and accountable to the group. This fosters a sense of responsibility and ownership of a problem, project or task, which in turn leads to greater acceptance of solutions and dedication to achieving team goals.

The Consequences of Superficial Quick Fixes

Negative long-term outcomes associated with short-cuts or cheating and the importance of trust and integrity in teams and the workplace.

Another frequently asked but very different question is “what are the experts’ rankings?” When participants Google for the survival answers or experts’ ranking for the team exercise, it undermines the spirit of the experience, the opportunity to grow as a team, as well as the trust that members have in one another. It’s also not worth the embarrassment or regret that the entire team could shoulder for not applying their best effort.

Better Together 

So, we encourage those searching for the answers to instead “get into” the challenge and collaborate with your teammates to ensure a positive, exciting, and productive survival simulation learning and team building experience. 

Thank you for your consideration, 
The Team at Human Synergistics, 
Creators of the world-renown Survival Situation series–including the Bushfire Survival Situation, Cascades Survival, Desert Survival, Desert Survival II, Reef Survival, the Subarctic Survival Situation, and Tsunami Survival.

Facilitators & Instructors

If you’re a facilitator looking for the answers to this simulation, please visit our Shop to order a Leader’s Guide, Participant Booklets, and/or Digital Credits. Thank you for your cooperation!

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