Tom Wujec presents some surprisingly deep research into the "marshmallow problem" — a simple team-building exercise that involves dry spaghetti, one yard of tape and a marshmallow. Who can build the tallest tower with these ingredients? And why does a surprising group always beat the average?
The Marshmallow Challenge is a remarkably fun and instructive design exercise that encourages teams to experience simple but profound lessons in collaboration, innovation, and creativity.
The task is simple: in eighteen minutes, teams must build the tallest free-standing structure out of 20 sticks of spaghetti, one yard of tape, one yard of string, and one marshmallow. The marshmallow needs to be on top.
Tom states “So there are a number of people who have a lot more “oh-oh” moments than others and among the worst are recent graduates of business school. […] An of course, there are teams that have a lot more “ta-da” structures and among the best are recent graduates of kindergarten. […] And that’s pretty amazing. […]