Two truths and a lie: the icebreaker to better understand your team members’ personality


Two truths and a lie

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As the saying goes, you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover... Well, that’s exactly what “Two truths and a lie” is all about! This activity will help you to get to know your team members. For example, who could have guessed that quiet Mary from the legal department is in fact a hard core heavy metal fan, who goes to the Hellfest festival every single year, no matter what? The principle is simple: everyone makes three statements about themselves, two being true and one false. The aim is for the group to find out which is which. You can combine this activity with the other wide selection of icebreakers, which aim to help team members to bond and enhance teamwork.

What does "2 truths and a lie" mean?

"Two truths and a lie" is basically a short and funny game that can easily be improvised between family members, friends, at school, and yes, between colleagues too!

To play it, each participant in the group has to think of three short anecdotes about themselves, two of which will be truths (something that really happened to them or describes them), and one that will be a lie.

The aim for the other players in the group is to guess right for each story, and find which sentence is the odd one out.

Why play "two truths and a lie" with your team? The benefits in the workplace

"Two truths and a lie" stands out as an ideal icebreaker to start your team meetings or workshops. In only a few minutes, it warms up the group and creates a climate of trust between the participants, who feel closer to each other because of making funny confessions to their peers. This empowers everyone for an efficient collective thinking phase afterwards.

How to play two truths and a lie?

The main benefit of "Two truths and a lie" is that it does not even require to be physically in the same place. Then, no problem at all to start a hybrid or fully remote meeting with this icebreaker!

And the good news is that this icebreaker is already available as a Board template! Here, everything is already set for you to start a "two truths and a lie" in seconds, in a dedicated and visual workspace.

As a team, get to know other team members in 15 minutes

Start a group meeting on Klaxoon’s Board

Whether your team members are attending a "2 truths and a lie" game remotely, in person or a bit of both, Klaxoon’s Board is a hassle-free meeting space with Live, the videoconferencing tool integrated on Board.
First, open the template and launch a Live meeting with your attendees. Ask them to post their picture and enter their first name in the dedicated boxes of the sticky notes, also called "dimensions". Then, everyone takes time to think about two truths and a lie about themselves. Whether they are personal or professional anecdotes, the main thing is not to be too obvious. This will only make the activity more interesting!

Example: “I’m a black belt in karate”, “I suffer from pigeon phobia”, “I auditioned for The Voice”, ... Each member anonymously posts three statements in their dedicated bubbles, being careful not to spill the beans.

A participant makes 3 statements during the icebreaker "Two truths and a lie".  | Klaxoon

Investigate and find out where the truth lies

Once each participant has been given a couple of minutes to post their ideas, ask a first player to start and read their three anecdotes in a random order. The rest of the team then has to ask them questions, to find out which statement is a lie. With this activity, team members will reveal new aspects of their personality! Who’s the next Sherlock Holmes? Who’s a poker face master?
During a "Two truths and a lie" icebreaker, some anecdotes may get the team members quite excited and they might start asking a lot of questions... You might want to use a timer so as not to let the investigation go on for too long.

Uncover the truth

Let the quest begin! The time has come to unveil the two truths and the lie. During the investigation time, the investigators share their suspicions and hints, by posting red ideas on which they write “wrong”. Then, using a connector, they visually connect them to the statement they think is a lie.
At the end of this phase, the person who produced the statements reveals which one was the lie, by “liking” the ideas of the investigators who called them out on their lie. If you want to get into a more competitive style, you can set up scores and count 1 point per good answer.
Then, each player in turn undergoes questioning until the ultimate moment of truth!

Example of 8 people participating in the icebreaker "Two truths and a lie". | Klaxoon
Example of a team of 8 people participating in the icebreaker "Two truths and a lie"

What makes this icebreaker so popular 

With “Two truths and a lie”, the subjects discussed tend to go beyond professional matters, which creates a friendly atmosphere.
If the participants have never met before, this activity helps them to get to know one another in a fun way. This icebreaker is useful in helping to dispel the biased views stemming from education or experience that team members may have of each other, as it is often the case.
On the other hand, if the team members already know each other, the activity can bring in a lot of surprises and unexpected facts to become awesome team running gags.
From the facilitator’s point of view, this is the ideal activity to reveal team members’ personality, which is always useful when planning the upcoming teamwork. By the way, if you are looking for a great variation of "Two truths and a lie", check out our Candy Confessions template!

What makes a good lie? A good truth?

From our own experience with "2 truths and a lie", we have realized that the best lies are actually partly true. The reason is that it makes them more realistic, and then more difficult to identify as lies. Perhaps, some of the investigators have even already heard about a similar story or context the storyteller had mentioned before, for something that had truly happen to him/her.

So, here is a piece of advice to conceive your lie as the storyteller. First, start thinking of a true anecdote, and then add in some elements to turn it into something that does not totally describe you, or something that was about to happen, but had not happen in the end. You will see that it will be much harder for the others to guess right, and after all, that's what you're aiming at!

Two truths and a lie ideas

"Two truths and a lie" can also be a themed icebreaker, related to specific experiences and characteristics. Here are a few ideas to start with your team:

  • Skills: "I used to give piano lessons when I was at school", "I am very good at making sushis", "I have been a handball champion twice",...
  • Experiences: "I have met Elizabeth II in person", "I have already tasted monkey brain in Asia", "I have never seen any of the Harry Potter movies",...
  • Family: "I have two elder brothers and a younger sister", "My aunt is a famous chef", "My parents have built their house by themselves.",...
  • Fun facts about yourself: "I hate chocolate", "I am afraid of palm trees", "I can sleep with my eyes open", ...
  • Travelling: “I have visited more than 10 African countries”, “I went on a business trip in Brazil”, “My dream is to go around the world for $80”,…

The best thing about "2 truths and a lie" is that there can always be something new to share with your team. In the end, it could even help you start further discussions and get in touch with the people even a long time after your common workshop. So, unleash your creativity and prepare your best poker faces!

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