Great team building can help businesses when it comes to boosting morale, efficiencies and discovering hidden talent in their employees by getting individuals to gel as a group. To get the most out of team building exercises it is essential to understand the main concepts behind team building. Below we take a look at communication, problem solving, planning, and trust to see how businesses can develop these skills within a team building environment.
To say communication is an important skill for team members is an understatement. Simply put if members of a team cannot talk or simply communicate with one another in a constructive way then the team cannot function. Communication as a skill is vital to any team.
Communication exercises are relatively simply in essence with the main aim being the development of communication and interaction between team members. Often group members are asked them to solve problems that require team members to communicate with one another through discussion.
Whilst there is somewhat less emphasis on defining personalities within the team structure (e.g. leadership personalities) there is some focus on attributing different communication skills to specific members of the team e.g. facilitators. This helps the team structure conversation appropriately through the use of facilitators and to arrive to a conclusion to the problem by working as a team.
Another approach to a communication exercise is to show the problems that arise from bad communication.
2. Problem Solving and Decision Making
Problem solving is an extremely creative activity that can also be a very social one. When team members are able to bounce ideas off one another new ideas and solutions present themselves faster than when members work in isolation.
Problem solving activities focus on the group’s ability to solve complex problems by coming to an opinion together. A solution might be put forward by an individual team member however the idea is progressed and developed by the team to produce succinct solution to the problem. The solution can be produced through either an agreed trial and error method or through a discussing about the logic behind the solution.
The benefits of problem solving and decision making method is that they can reveal (or simply reflect) some problems felt within the team’s more natural work environment. However more abstract problems can also be particularly insightful as they often show which team members are more creative.
Planning exercises focus on the skills required by teams to arrive at solutions that do not rely on trial and error. Team members are encouraged to discuss methods and logic behind solutions through planning techniques that might have been taught in an introductory session. In this case the activity tends to be more tutorial based than purely “self discovery”. For this reason the activity sometimes closely resembles that of problem solving/decision activities.
Trust exercises are an interesting element in team building activities. Because the activity needs to invoke a highly emotional behaviour, the exercises are often quite abstract in nature. Exercises encourage team members to rely on other members to carry out tasks on their behalf and to solve puzzles and activities that are difficult to solve without the team members trusting one another. Trust exercises can also be insightful in terms of group behaviour often illustrating which members are able to relinquish control in favour of giving others more control from those who are unable to do so. In these situations team members are thus given opportunities to discover the root of any trust issues between team members.
In essence the most obvious aim for any team building event is to get teams to work together and to identify any problems with team dynamics. There is also another wider benefit when businesses invest in team building: they show that businesses are committed to developing the employees’ interpersonal skills and happiness.
De Vere’s training centres have excellent facilities that are perfect for team building events or all shapes and sizes.