I'm planning a company conference where we will bring all our developers, applications engineers and sales people to one place for 3 days to do training and socializing. This is not a huge group (85 people) but they come from 9 offices in 5 countries and many have never met each other face to face.
We will create name tags for everyone that has their name and what office they work in but I'd like to add some additional information on the badges to help people get to know their co-workers. The problem is I have no idea what we could add that would be interesting, professional and not be offensive to any of the cultures (europe and japan). I was thinking of things like:
Does anyone have suggestions on what I should do?
Create an augmented reality application that links faces with [insert social network here] profile. Actually, this probably already exists.
Seriously, +1 for favorite sport & where born, -1 for # of children (I'm not so sure about that one). You could add what languages they speak and, for developers, what language they code! Actually, you could let every employee insert their own personal message.
But if you must add something other than a name why don't you ask people what they want to put on there? This way it is something they are willing to share and want to talk about.
"Ask me about 'x'"
If it were me, I'd skip the top-down/forced piece of shared information, and maybe even the name tags all-together.
You should do a Speed Friending (like Speed Dating) exercise. Break up into groups of 8-10 and have everyone describe themselves in 30 seconds. The best description wins (voted by the group). Then, have all the winners be a group. At the end, award a prize for the best description.
The other thing you can do is work on a fun group project. Break up into the same groups and have the team do a skit or play or whatever on a topic they pull out of a hat. In the skit, they have to somehow work in what they do, where they are from and their favorite color (or something like that).
Maybe the current project they are working on?