How to Draw Straws in an Email


Drawing straws is a random yet effective way to assign duties, pick teams or dole out projects to a group of people. When trying to draw straws via email you need to be diligent and fair to those you are working with.

  • Cut up straws in random lengths. If you are assigning teams of two or three, make sure you cut them in the correct number of lengths. Measure the size of each team and cut the same lengths for that number of people.

  • Assign each straw a number. As you assign the numbers, don't be unfair by choosing a number or length of straw before the rest of your email group. Yours comes at the end.

  • Send out an email stating your purpose to those you intend to include in the draw-straws scenario. Include the list of people in the drawing and what the teams, projects or decisions are that are decided by the straws drawn.

  • Begin with one person. Email them and ask them to draw straws by picking a number. After that person has responded, move on to the next person.

  • Remove the number or numbers drawn as you move down the list. To avoid having more than one person choose the same number, make sure you take each straw out of rotation as it is drawn.

  • Draw your straw last. As the straw holder, this is your lot. Your straw is the last one standing after everyone else has picked.

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