Over the years I have had the good fortune of working with groups from a wide variety of fields and populations – from youth camps, schools and Scouts to NGO’s, small businesses and government agencies. The individuals who contact me to secure a team building program usually have a general idea of team building and often have a general goal of getting to know each other, enhancing interpersonal communication and building trust between the members of the group. They may have previously participated in an activity that was billed as a team building event, but they generally have mixed feelings about the efficacy of the actual team building component, as opposed to the obvious recreational aspect. So, this begs the question: What is team building and why should we do it?
From my perspective, a ‘team’ can be as simple as an assembly of individuals whose purpose is to work together on a project or towards a common goal. In order to be an effective team, there needs to be a level of trust, good communication, and shared responsibility. The team will generally face multiple conflicts such as challenges to leadership or lack of group commitment. Overcoming these challenges allows the team to grow and evolve, and taking part in a well presented team building program gives teams an arena in which to make this evolution.
The tools and techniques used by team building providers are not as important as the facilitator’s ability to lead a team in identifying its strengths and opportunities for growth. NEXTeams uses a combination of experience-based activities and traditional meeting-style techniques, but the true value of its facilitation comes through the conversations that organically emerge during the process. These spontaneous and often passionate discussions are where the change in the group dynamics takes place.
Team building, if done well, can be the catalyst to change within an organization. The only way that this change can be significant or lasting, however, is through effective and timely follow-up. The follow-up process helps the team to take the lessons learned during the team building activities and build upon them during the day-to-day interactions within their organization. Follow-up enables the transference of the gains made during the actual team building event.
For More Information Contact Eriq Powers