How many times in the corporate world has the phrase “There is no I in team!” been used? Too many? Perhaps so, and because of its overuse, it has managed to gain a negative connotation. When most individuals hear these words they think that it means that each person in the team isn’t significant and that they are only important when they work “together”. The truth is, there are many ‘I’s in a team, and this needs to be remembered, for without each person the team could not exist. It is vital to bear this in mind while encouraging people to work together and work well. Which leads to the question: how does a company show each person their appreciation, while also inspiring synergy amongst their employees? The answer is: Team building.
TEAM BUILDING AND ITS BAD REPUTATION
What’s that? Are those cries of disgust and sounds of horror? Yes, we all know the bad rap that team building gets, and for the most part, it is understandable. Playing a silly (and sometimes dangerous!) trust fall game or participating in talking about either themselves or their fellow coworkers usually only results in making people uncomfortable. This is certainly not going to boost morale, inspire people to want to work harder at their jobs or help improve interpersonal relationships amongst the staff. It is also not going to make people feel respected and valued as both an employee and an individual. In spite of this though team building can in fact work when it is done correctly.
TEAM BUILDING DONE RIGHT
The first step towards doing team building correctly is realizing that there are certain things that need to be taken into consideration: the dynamics of the group and what the goal of the activity will be. This leads to several questions: “Is there conflict amongst employees?’ ‘Do people not know how to communicate?’ ‘Is there a clashing of personalities?’ Usually when a company is contemplating doing team building with their employees it is because they can answer yes to one, if not all, of these questions.
Still some may ask ‘why is it important? And why does it need to be done?’ The answer is simple. Team building helps to strengthen and improve multiple areas within the workforce. Employees will learn that they can rely on each other, they will gain new skills on how to tackle complications, they will be able to ‘think outside of the box’, and they will return to work feeling inspired. Most important of all, they’ll learn how to communicate better!
‘But how exactly is all of this accomplished?’ Great question! During a team-building activity such as putting together children’s bikes, by designing and constructing a bridge, or making go-kart teams have to work together and rely on each other in order to achieve a common goal. Without each other’s help the task set to them cannot be accomplished; i.e. through lack of proper communication the bike pedals were put on backward, the bridge collapsed or the go-kart’s axles failed. But once they realize what they can attain together, the entire group reaps the rewards.
REAPING THE REWARDS OF TEAM BUILDING
One of the reasons as to why team building does work is because the activity usually takes place outside of the office. Getting away from the place where hostility and conflict rules the day can drastically help make a difference.
Another reason is that both employer and employee are able to view each other in an entirely different environment and situation. It also allows them to work more closely together, whereas on a common day they might not even exchange a hello. This goes for co-workers as well, those who either work in different sections of the office and never interact, or work in different states and even different countries. Team building encourages camaraderie and bonding, resulting in a greater and more united workplace!
DOES YOUR TEAM NEED HELP?
Has your team lost its way? Is there hostility and conflict amongst the cubicles? Then why not try one of our team building programs! Each of our specially designed events focuses on problem-solving, innovation, and strategic planning while incorporating fun and excitement to help enhance individual and team growth.
Shore, Amanda. “Why Team Building is Important.” Herd Wisdom. http://www.herdwisdom.com/blog/why-team-building-is-important/
McCarthy, John. “Why team building is important to your business strategy.” http://www.trainingzone.co.uk/lead/culture/why-team-building-is-important-to-your-business-strategy