Team building games build cohesion

Last week we discussed the "fun" benefits of team building. This week:  how team building helps build cohesion.

Games build cohesiveness

At the start of every team building event, we devise a random method to divide the large group into smaller teams for the competitive games that lie ahead. Usually we choose a method that gets people involved quickly in some silly fashion. For example, everyone on a given team must find each other in the group by doing their best imitation of a duck, while another group must bay like wolves. It’s energizing, funny, and at the same time - because of its overt silliness - bonding.

The point is, once we start to organize participants into teams - no matter how random our method - group cohesion begins almost immediately. This cohesion is reinforced throughout the series of games and challenges in which participants engage in the event. The bonds forged over the next few hours translate directly into stronger “real world” relationships. Testimonials and interview comments from clients months later confirm this observation time and time again.

Games build fond memories

During follow-up interviews with clients, we like to ask:  what do you remember about the event? Invariably, participants assert that one of the things they value most is time spent with colleagues that they often did not know well, if at all, before. A great uniter of teams is the ability to remember and laugh about silly moments that occurred during a team outing.

For this reason we provide as many opportunities for laughter as possible. For example, for our bike building charity events, adults must don silly hats and ride the kids’ bikes. Talk about photo opportunities!

One participant said in a post-event interview, “I almost never spoke with my counterparts from our (other city) location before. By mixing together people from the various offices onto teams, I feel I know them better now and I’m much more comfortable picking up the phone to call them.”

Next week: Learning about each other

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