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When you hear the words ‘team building’, do you feel excited about planning some fun events with your colleagues… or does your heart sink? Maybe you’ve experienced a few team-building events in your time that have fallen flat, but with a bit of careful planning you can turn your fears around and create engaging and fun team-building exercises that will work wonders for team morale and employee wellbeing.
Read on to remind yourself why team building can be a worthwhile investment of your time and energy – and if you’re struggling for event ideas, we share some suggestions to help you get started.
The benefits of team building
No matter how supportive and collaborative your workplace culture is, there is always room for a fresh perspective. Putting your colleagues into some unexpected scenarios helps them to approach problems in different ways and get to know their teammates in different contexts – presenting opportunities to find out more about the people they work with. Taking people out of their work environment and putting them into a neutral space also encourages them to relax and drop their guard, helping them to develop their workplace friendships.
As people become more comfortable and relaxed with each other, the potential for more effective collaboration grows, which should lead to greater productivity and enhanced creativity. Breaking down the barriers that hold people back from sharing their ideas is a huge benefit for businesses looking to encourage strategic thinking – especially if the ideas are a bit ‘out there’. True, not every idea is going to be a winner – but who knows what gems could be unearthed if your team is open and confident in their creative thinking?
Using team-building exercises on a regular basis should help to improve outcomes for workplace projects because the exercises will have identified team members’ strengths, weaknesses and interests. These insights may even inform your colleagues’ training goals – for example, they might realise they would like to improve their negotiation skills, or further develop existing strengths.
Another fun way to boost your team’s productivity is to make things competitive. Galvanise your team with some competitive scenarios, perhaps with a little time pressure thrown in for good measure, and watch as they pull out all the stops to succeed.
Ultimately, team-building exercises provide your colleagues with an opportunity to step back from the stresses of their day-to-day work and develop their relationships with the people they collaborate with.
Inspiration for your next team-building event
Team-building events could be as simple as a lunchtime get-together or as involved as an away day. Think about how small team-building activities could become regular events and part of your company’s culture. For example, maybe you could introduce a monthly lunchtime knowledge-sharing session, where a team member can share a project update, followed by lunch and a lively discussion. This brings everyone together and may shine a light on some new ways forward. Equally, a team member could bring a problem to the table and invite the team to discuss solutions.
Another way to mix team building with strategic outcomes is to get the team together off site for a day of fun and games. A change in scenery often works wonders, and a mix of physical and mental exercise makes for a fun day out – and a well-earned lunch!
Regular social events are a fun way to bring your team together without the need for fulfilling business objectives – and yet the camaraderie you encourage will go a long way towards your team’s success. Maybe you could run a regular quiz night or encourage a colleague to start a business book club?
However you decide to approach team building in your organisation, remember to focus on the outcomes for your business and the people in your team – and consider how you will collect feedback so that you can make future events even more successful. Team building is a strategic investment of time, money and energy, so make it count!
At DPS Software, we are firm believers in the power of effective legal software to help connect your team and make life easier for everyone in your organisation. To find out how we can support your organisation, contact us today.