Many employees frown upon the idea of having to attend team building events, but that’s mostly because they’ve probably never experienced team building that was fun and engaging.
In fact, team building can be one of the best ways to keep your employees motivated and maintain a good office atmosphere, and is a much more affordable way to keep people giving their best than incentive travel.
But, how do you go about making your team building activities fun and effective at breaking the ice?
Well, here are a few simple ideas that you can use as soon as today which have proven to work very well.
A classic team building activity that always generates great results is a scavenger hunt. There are many reasons why it works so well, but it all boils down to scavenger hunts being a lot of fun, easy to organize, and very flexible and adaptable to your needs and capabilities.
If you have the time and the resources, you could organize a large-scale scavenger hunt over an outdoor area such as a park or even a part of the city, and allow your employees to go hunting for clues in teams.
But, if you’re not up for such a large-scale event, there are simpler alternatives.
If you just want a quick and fun activity at the office for a few hours, you could hide a few things around your office building and let your employees go out exploring and solving the riddles.
Add in a symbolic but appealing prize, and you’ve got yourself a team-building activity that will not only break the ice but will leave everyone talking about it for weeks after it’s over.
Everybody loves quizzes, even if they won’t admit it.
People love to challenge their own knowledge and showcase it to others, so if you can organize a pop quiz that sets a friendly but competitive atmosphere, you’ll be surprised how quickly people will get out of their shell and relax in the company of one another.
You can just have a general pop quiz about pop culture and known events, or you could choose a theme such as the biggest hits of the 80s and explore it from various angles.
The best part about a pop quiz is that it doesn’t take a lot of effort to set up. You can just find some quizzes online or quickly put together a list of questions based on your theme. It can still have very positive effects on setting the mood for the team-building event or meeting, and serve as a great way to relax the atmosphere and get people laughing.
Even if you just want to start a regular office meeting on a lighter note to ease the tension, you can have a quick 10-minute quiz before starting and reap the benefits of working with a much more relaxed and engaged team.
Two Truths and a Lie
Even if colleagues have a good work relationship, there is still sometimes a comfort barrier because they don’t really know each other on a more personal level.
Well, honesty-based games are a great way to change that.
They allow employees to show a bit more of their personal side and share experiences from their lives that tell more about who they are and what they stand for.
One of the best games for this purpose is two truths and a lie – it’s a very popular game that many of your employees have probably played already during their teen years, so it will be fun to recapture those youth memories and relive it with at the workplace.
The game is rather simple: each employee has to tell two truths and one lie about themselves or about their experiences in life, and then others have to guess which one is the lie.
For instance, someone could say that they studied ballet for five years, have been to Brazil, and know how to speak French, and the others would have to guess which one is the false one.
This game is fun because co-workers will often learn interesting and even surprising things about one another and will have a ton of laughs trying to guess which answers are true.
That will help them to not only open up to one another but also to learn to appreciate the fact that the office is a diverse place full of interesting people with unique backgrounds, which can help to form deeper relationships and maybe even serve as a beginning to new friendships.
The Egg Drop
If you want a great team building event that forces people to work together towards a common goal, the egg drop challenge might be the perfect option.
Basically, the challenge requires you to split your office into teams and give them a single task: make a contraption that would prevent an egg from breaking when dropped.
All you’ll need is a few uncooked eggs, some common items that can be used to fall-proof the egg, and a timeframe for how long the teams have to complete the challenge.
To stimulate the creativity in your office, limit their options of things they can work with – for instance, allow them to only use office supplies to prepare the egg, which will not only make it more challenging but will force them to work together and really put their minds to solving the challenge.
After the time for setting up the eggs is done, test out the designs!
Drop the eggs from a set height, which could be anything from a couple of meters to a few stories, and see which ones do best. You’ll be surprised to see the ingenious designs that some of your colleagues will be able to come up with, which will make this a fun experience for all.
Make sure that you arrange for at least some sort of reward to the best performers and to all participants, even if it’s symbolic – you want to show people that their participation matters and that you care about making the activity as fun as possible.
About the Author: Sarah Hill is a content writer at Seven Events Ltd – one of the leading corporate event planners providing corporate team building events in Birmingham. She started her career in the events industry almost a decade ago; as time progressed she became an avid event blogger sharing her insight on corporate event planning.