27 Sept 2013 – Robert T Andrews – Featured –
The business world is evolving, with shows like The Apprentice pushing the ideals of team work in high stress, high risk, high reward and above all business like situations companies are no longer teaching that it is survival of the fittest in their offices. On the contrary there is an even bigger push for their employees to work hard at being a team. Thousands are spend each year in an attempt to draw your employees into a closer knit community in an attempt to help boost moral, work ethics and sales.
But which team building activities really work? Below I’ve listed my top 10.
1. Back to Back Drawing
This is a great way of strengthening the communication between team members, team members sit back to back with one person describing an image in front of them to the person behind who must sketch out what is being described. Not only will this help your team members improve their communication, it may cause the side effect of fun which will help them bond together as a team.
2. Survival Game
Explain that everyone on the team has been in a plane crash, they are now on a life boat life boat heading towards a desert island and can only take a set number of items with them. The teams must discuss and rate the items that they think are important enough to take. The key word here is discuss, this is meant to be a measured exchange of ideas with shared creativity, no one should be shouting over the other.
Get back to nature with your teams, break them up and give them a map then set them a quest. Nothing will fray tempers quicker than a slight misreading, especially if there is a time limit involved. This exercise will show who can keep a cool head under pressure, which group will manage to resolve or overcome disagreements and, of course, who has the best map reading skills.
4. Build a Tower
Let your teams get creative and work with their hands as well as their minds. Setting a task of building a tower with a set amount of materials will get their creative juices flowing as well as causing your teams to pull together in order to win the highest tower competition.
5. Humans Versus Zombies
A high energy team building activity in survival horror form! Your team will have to work together regardless of any differences in an attempt to survive, especially as Zombies take no prisoners and have no preferences. What a great way to get your team bonding than by letting them have a pint in the Winchester after it’s all blown over, if they survive!
6. Plain Sailing
Most places you can hold a team building event at can offer you some outdoor activities too, try getting your teams into a raft building exercise and having them race across a pond or slow moving river, you can introduce a little healthy competition if you need to, or simply have another team play at being pirates so they defend their newly built raft in order to reach the finish line.
7. Employee Planning
Get your workers to plan a charity or hospitality event together, they will need to work together with creativity, delegation and enthusiasm in order to bring the event to fruition. Not only will you be helping them work together, you could be helping a good cause too.
8. Throw a Party
It may sound a little odd but many offices now use virtual teams. It may be time for you to introduce those people face to face and let them find out what they are like outside of the office environment as many things can be taken the wrong way with no visual or audio cues.
9. Sending an email
A great trust and communications game, but make sure employees are comfortable with being in close quarters or being touched by their colleagues. Standing in a line the person at one end must read a message and pass it on my drawing the letter or symbol out on the back of the person in front of them.
10. Capture the Flag
Fun is to be had with this old school game, here you can pit two teams against each other and watch as they work out how they can not only defend their flag but capture the opposing teams whilst they work on the various qualities that all companies would like to see in their teams: Planning, leadership, strategy and hard work.