An email comes in from your boss saying that your company will be having a day of staff meetings with an element of team building. Your heart sinks. Instantly your mind puts a negative spin on it. You start thinking about your workload piling up and you think that a day out of the office doesn’t sound very productive. We have all been there! But it doesn’t have to be like this!
From your employer’s view, team building is incredibly important. They want a productive, motivated team to carry out their business and a team building event sounds a like a great way to achieve this. But if the reaction of their staff is similar to the one above, those objectives just simply will not be met.
So, what makes a great team building event? We believe that adventure is the key to this.
The British Forces highly value adventurous training and regularly creates opportunities for its personnel to carry out such training. The British Army Website explains their definition of Adventurous Training:
“Challenging outdoor training for Service personnel in specified adventurous activities that incorporates controlled exposure to risk, in order to develop: leadership; teamwork; physical fitness; moral and physical courage; as well as other personal attributes and skills that are vital to the delivery of Operational Capability.”
A great team building event should challenge you, push you out of your comfort zone, broaden your horizons, encourage you to try something new and get you talking – the most critical element of a team building event.
The sense of achievement that comes from summiting a climbing wall conquering your fear of heights, the challenge of hitting clay pigeons, the camaraderie of spending a day walking in the mountains or the excitement of a high-speed powerboat ride. These elements all create a long lasting impression on you and your team and the fact that you all shared these experiences together, creates an amazing bond which will continue back into the workplace.
A great team building event needs to have a set of clear objectives that are communicated to everyone. All events from staff reward days, through to events that are designed to solve a particular issue (for example inter-team communication) need these objectives. By having these and meeting these, everyone comes away from the event feeling that it was worthwhile and they were a part of that solution!
So how about this, next time you start planning a team building event, why not think… What will my next adventure be?
We hope you found what makes a great team building event? useful, but if you have any other ideas, why not join in the conversation and comment below!