In recent years, we have seen companies move away from competitive work environments to workplaces where collaboration and cooperation between staff is seen as the key to company-wide success.
As part of this shift, more and more companies are regularly undertaking team building activities.
These activities can range from a short problem-solving event to a few days of retreat. And while some people consider team building a “fun break” from regular work, it has a serious purpose: to develop the skills and knowledge of your staff.
If you can organize team building activities that have a purpose and objectives behind the planning, then your organization can reap a range of benefits. Let’s take a look at some of the areas in which you can expect to see positive improvement:
Team building can help increase employee motivation and maintain a successful company culture in a number of ways. When a group of employees successfully completes a team building activity, it builds momentum and makes them feel good about themselves – it increases employees’ confidence in their abilities and those of their team and it also shows employees that the organization is willing to invest in them.
Improving productivity is one of the most common goals of team building activities. Take the opportunity to identify ways to improve the “three Ps” that can affect productivity:
By encouraging employees to learn to work together more effectively and reduce duplication of effort, your employees can work more efficiently.
One of the most important benefits of a properly planned team building activity is increased collaboration among employees. Collaboration is about knowing who has what knowledge (or can answer a question), trusting them and their experience, and being able to access that person when you need them. By creating activities that people enjoy and can experience as a group, employees can build relationships and develop networks of contacts outside of their day-to-day role that will help them in the future.
To have a successful business based on creativity and innovation, you need to employ different people with diverse perspectives and expertise to “pollinate” the organization with new ideas. Out-of-the-box team building tasks give employees permission to use their imaginations to come up with creative solutions, and they send the message that creativity in the workplace and bouncing ideas are welcome.
Team building can also be used to provide recognition to employees by highlighting the specific work of employees and the behaviors that led the recipient to receive the recognition. By incorporating recognition into team building, you can send a strong message to each participant about your company’s values and what that means for the success of the organization.
Perhaps the most important benefit of a properly planned team building activity is improved communication between employees. Fun, enjoyable activities allow employees to get to know each other, understand each other better, and break down walls of mistrust by encouraging people to focus on what they have in common rather than their differences.
Team building activities can be a powerful way to build collaboration and trust, improve motivation, develop strengths and address weaknesses. However, they must have a real purpose and be properly planned to have a real impact, rather than simply providing “a nice day out of the office.”
CONNECTING REMOTE TEAMS
Remote team building has the power to build stronger relationships that in turn will improve productivity, retention, engagement and morale, and should not be overlooked. Team building is a great excuse to bring together team members who don’t always work closely together in their daily responsibilities.
If you have a number of employees spread across multiple locations, or a team of remote workers, taking the time to allow them to build their relationships within the team and outside of project deliverables can have a huge impact on how they work together. It also allows team members who may be quite isolated to feel more connected to the larger team and help improve their connection to the company and their peers.