Team Building – How ‘real’ is it?

There is a lot written about Team Building. A lot of it positive and some of it negative. The negative comments can include questions about the value – are team building events worth the money? Do they add value to the organisation?

Well, as with most things in life, the answer to this question is … “it depends.” Lets take a look at what it depends on.

1. Objectives

It is important when employees work together that they can communicate, work together and solve conflicts effectively. The best way to speed up this process is through facilitated team building activities. Therefore the first step in getting value from your team building is to understand your objectives and choose your activity accordingly. The more accurate you are with your objectives the more accurate you can be with your team building. Just be honest and choose accordingly. Are you after entertainment, physical activity, learning, a key message, bonding, something memorable, competition?

Does your team need to work on communication, conflict resolution, improve certain skills etc. There are plenty of options so you are almost certain to find something no matter what your objectives.This in turn can all improve productivity in the workplace.

2. Uniqueness

When choosing an activity you should also consider if the activity is unique or special. People enjoy doing something that’s a treat or that’s not something they would do on their own. Think about this when choosing your team building event. How unique is the activity? Is it something they could do or is it really only something that is possible in a group environment like the one you are planning? You will get a greater vibe and also increased participation from your team if the activity you select is something that they have not done before, or always wanted to do. 

3. Timing

You can get a lot out of your team building activity if you think about the timing. A mistake that’s often made is to leave team building till the last event of the conference. However if the event improves relationships and bonding then you can get more value if you run the activity at the beginning of your conference.

Holding a team building activity after 5pm on a Friday afternoon is also not a great idea. Most people are keen to get home and start the weekend. It also shows that you don’t think that team building is important if you won’t make time during work hours for the event to be run. If you can’t get everyone out of the office then organise something that can be held with your office. Even an event that only runs for 1 hour – done on a regular basis will make a difference to your teams performance.

Team Building is occurs when relevant and well chosen activities address specific objectives. The purpose is to motivate your team to work together, develop strengths and work on any weaknesses. Team Building activities should also encourage collaboration rather than competition. 

So – it doesn’t take much to get a lot out of your team building. Clear objectives, a unique activity, and timing can lead to a fantastic and memorable event.

Team Building was meant to be Easy

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