There are plenty of businesses, organizations, and top corporations in the world today that consistently use team building weekends as a way to build the strength of their workforce. Whether it is beginning to scale a cliffe, repel from a high building, long weekend retreat where office mates work together to build a shelter or a group building a robot with just a few components team building weekends can be a powerful tool in your corporation’s toolbox.
Team Building Weekends Begin (and End) With Strong Leadership
Team building is not a new concept. In fact, it has been around from the beginning of time, we just didn’t call it by that name. This process can be easily defined as a time when co-workers come together to build communications, leadership and problem solving skills through the use of games and other challenging activities. The one problem that stands out within team building is not the activities themselves, but the follow through.
Strong leadership is needed for successful team building weekends. As the weekend winds down and employees make their way back to their homes – and subsequently into the office – the weekend is only thought of within memories, jokes or sharing of good times. The principles begin to fade away, unless there is a consistent following up of these principles within the work week. A leader should be working to maintain this “team” philosophy so that the skills learned are skills retained.
The biggest mistake that most leaders make after the team building weekends is failing to communicate after work resumes. The ability to share goals, enlist new thoughts, encourage others to think creatively, and praising these teams is the work of a strong leader who values team building. This type of communication brings people together and helps to reach a common goal.
Weekly Team Building
Team building weekends do not have to be the only time in which teams are worked on. Leaders should continue to build teamwork into the normal work flow of the week. For example, before starting a new project call a team conference in order to share, define and refine goals. Regular team meetings should be incorporated into the work day to share triumphs, area where the project is stuck and brainstorm for new ideas.
Individuals like to be rewarded and recognized for their efforts. This recognition within a team does the same thing. These recognitions to not always need to be formal events, but simple “Well done” and “Great job!” can go along way to bringing together a more cohesive and energetic team.
As a part of most team building weekends there are a lot of fun moments when the members of a team can laugh, let loose and be themselves. This same concept should also continue to be a part of the work week through “fun” times together. Set aside a lunch time as a picnic, hold birthday parties for team members, give “secret” gifts at different times throughout the year. The amount of “fun” things a leader can develop is unlimited. The point is not to have large times or feel overwhelmed. Sometimes the most fun times are those that come about naturally through teams organically growing together.
Leadership is important to team building weekends. However, they are also important for the office environment too as the skills learned during the weekend need to be continually used, sharpened and improved.