P.E. Team Building Activities
The Idea Trader is dedicated to spreading interesting ideas and current news to readers and interested parties. This blog contains opinions and insights for ideas and investment opportunities and is not intended as advice for investing.
Over the past few years, team building has become one of the biggest trends in corporate America. Companies are investing large amounts of money to hold various team-building events every week.
Team building is typically not paid for by individual employees, but comes from the company’s budget. This is why it is important to make sure you don’t spend too much when planning your next event.
You want to make sure you do enough work so that the savings made off the reduced employee turnover offset the cost of the event.
It also helps if you are able to show that the participants left with something they can apply to their job. For example, if the event was to race through a field together, then people may choose to use teamwork as a way to achieve a common goal in their own jobs.
There is no wrong time or place for team building
Teambuilding can occur at any time or anywhere. It does not necessarily have to be during business hours, nor do you need to have everyone involved working for the same company.
Some companies organize casual get-togethers where individuals can come along and participate without being obligated to stay. This allows for more opportunities to include more people, which can lead to additional team bonding experiences.
Making an effort to meet new people is another good opportunity to practice teamwork.
Changing how you interact with someone can really test their limits, and if you do it right, they’ll appreciate your effort.
Finding new ways to challenge individuals in your workplace is a great way to boost employee engagement.
You could ask them to take on an assignment that has proven to be too big for others before them or to work through some of their most difficult assignments ever given.
Ask around about what they like doing and see if there are any opportunities you can turn into something interesting and productive.
By bringing out the best in each other, you increase productivity and loyalty, which are both crucial when working together as a team.
Interpersonal skills are one of the biggest factors in success at work. Being able to motivate colleagues, being aware of their strengths and weaknesses, and listening to what they have to say are all important career tools.
So try giving these professionals a chance to show off what they know by asking them to give a presentation, organize a party, lead a project – anything that requires them to showcase their leadership qualities.
These types of challenges will push them beyond their comfort zone, creating a sense of reward and growth, not to mention improving their personal effectiveness.
Make it fun
As mentioned before, team building is not about having big gatherings with heavy drinks and food. These types of activities can be expensive and may not necessarily result in teamwork.
Instead, try doing something that is more cost-effective but still productive. You can do these activities at any time or place, and you don’t need much preparation other than yourself and your colleagues.
For example, taking a short walk outside together or holding an informal meeting to discuss topics such as teamwork, goals, etc. are great opportunities for team bonding.
More elaborate events require less than half a day to organize and can be done during off hours when people aren’t too busy. Some examples include hosting a movie night, playing interactive games, or simply talking around a table or in a circle.
These activities should focus more on creating open conversations rather than just watching a film.
Hold people accountable
As a leader, you will get some that are willing to do what you ask of them, and then there are others who need constant reminders and push ahead. The first group would be great team members, but the second may cost you your job.
As a manager, hold those in leadership positions accountable for their jobs. If they say they’ll do something, they should do it!
Be honest, but don’t make false promises or threaten dismissals if they can’t keep up. It is their position so chances are they know how things work around here – why should they take responsibility when someone else does?
By holding your top leaders accountable, they’ll realize they must earn everyone’s trust and respect by doing what they say. They’ll also learn how to manage their own staff effectively as well.
Take baby steps
A good way to start team building is to have your group meet for a coffee or tea session, then do something casual like go out for lunch or grab some snacks.
After that, you can invite them all to a movie or play a game of pool together. Once you get people moving into activity modes, you can add more formal events such as holding an open meeting, having a conference call, or hosting a party or event.
These types of activities are great because they don’t require too much preparation time and can be done at any time. If someone has a planned event, you can usually find members who want to come and join in!
Teambuilding doesn’t happen overnight so don’t expect it to occur when you make a big announcement about what you plan to do. Try doing something small first to see how things go and if there are signs of growth, keep adding to the plans.
As mentioned earlier, team building is not about having fun alone or doing activities that are only for an audience of people who already agree with you. It is to create conversations and understanding among individuals, groups, and/or organizations.
Teambuilding can be done at any level- from bringing everyone together in one place to sharing your company’s mission for the first time to creating open discussions about difficult topics.
By breaking down barriers and having unscripted talks, teamwork is strengthened. This is important because teams that work well also have strong bonds of friendship and respect. These types of teams are more likely to succeed than those that do not!
Relationships are built through active listening, asking questions, acknowledging differences, and showing empathy. When working on teams, remember these concepts and strive to strengthen them.
Strategic team building can help promote creativity, communication, and motivation. A lot of times, professionals get stuck in their own individualistic ways of thinking and acting. By incorporating team building into the workplace, these things can be worked on and improved.
Do team tasks
Teams of people come in all shapes and sizes, which is why it’s important to not limit yourself to only those things that are “team-building exercises.” There are many ways to motivate your colleagues, create relationships and trust, and gain higher productivity levels if you know how to touch their personal lives.
Ask about someone’s day – what they had for lunch, what they were doing afterward, if anyone invited them somewhere or asked them something personal, etc.
Invite someone out to a non-work event like a movie or bowling night, or ask them about their weekend.
Give an informal feedback session by asking questions such as “What have I done well lately? What can I do better?” or “How could I be more productive today?”
Plan a casual get-together outside of work (for example, a barbeque) with some beverages and snacks so people feel relaxed and comfortable.
Hold team meetings
After all, leadership is about inspiring people to work together towards a common goal. This doesn’t happen when nobody talks to anybody else!
Too often we get into situations where no one says anything because they don’t want to risk being ‘laughed at’ or ‘rejected’. They don’t feel like they know you so they try to play it safe by staying in their own little box.
This isn’t effective leadership.
As a leader, your job is to inspire trust and confidence in those around you. You have to be willing to take risks and expose yourself to different opinions.
You can’t expect people to follow you if you've never seen or heard from them. - Steve Jobs
So how do you hold a meeting?
The best way is probably the most straightforward – invite everyone out for an informal chat with some food and drinks, then just talk!
Invite individuals or groups of people up for small group discussions or to share experiences, ideas, and thoughts.
Some tips before the meeting:
Make sure your invitations are clear and easy to access. Nobody wants to spend time looking for theirs!
Include enough time for each person to speak freely without feeling rushed. Some people need more time to warm up than others. Give them that!
Keep the conversation focused and relevant. Let people express themselves and contribute.
Establish a company culture
A strong work environment is one of the most important things for career success in any field, including that of software development. Whether you have just been given your first job as an engineer or you are a veteran developer looking to advance within the organization, creating an open community atmosphere will play a crucial role in how well you do your job.
A supportive workplace has open conversations about topics such as politics, religion, and social issues, which can sometimes be uncomfortable for some. However, having these discussions helps promote teamwork and understanding of other people’s points of view. An inclusive team spirit also encourages more individuals in the department to try new things and take risks because they feel their opinions are heard and understood.
As a manager, you should strive to create an environment where your staff feels comfortable talking to you about anything – even if it isn’t related to their daily duties. This creates trust between you and those working under you and makes them willing to go above and beyond for you. Your colleagues will eventually leave the department, so investing time into nurturing a positive relationship with them is worth its weight in gold.