Posts Tagged ‘Team Building’
Just back from an exhausting but exhilarating day full of outdoor activities and team challenges. We were working with a new team who were going to be facing a lot of new challenges in the future and needed to become a really well-knit team as quickly as possible.
An outdoor day is brilliant for team bonding and breaking down barriers fast. People get to see each other in a different light, new skills emerge and levels of trust and support come to the fore when tackling strange and out of the comfort zone challenges.
This particular challenge was a journey that involved 3 stages by canoe, on foot and by mountain bike to reach a set destination by a set time. The journey is physical and the weather could've been better but these guys were a tough team and emerged victorious. They loved the time away from the office in unfamiliar surroundings and the time to see and understand each other in out of office roles.
As well as the physical challenges there were also a whole series of team activities to be completed along the way. Each team activity successfully completed was rewarded with a key to the treasure box. Each leg of the journey contained questions and clues which correctly answered were rewarded with further information regarding the whereabouts of the treasure box.
So lots to do whilst this team building event was taking place both for the organisers and the participants. In the end it was a long, hard day but amply rewarded with the sharing of the contents of the treasure box and a job well done.
Sharon Naylor has been working with teams for nearly 30 years! She is an advocate of team building and experiential learning - learning through doing and reviewing. For more great experiential ideas for team building visit her ice breaker ideas web-site
We had a stand there and met lots of interesting training and development managers. We were very pleased to report great feedback for our experiential team building activities and we even gave away some of our "Sticky Rope" team building activities for free! These team activities are ones we have used for over 21 years! They are the very best of the small team games we have been using on all our events over the years. Check -out our team building activities now! They are brilliant for:
- adding a participative dimension to training programmes
- energising a sleepy audience
- integrating carefully matched activities into a training programme to produce real learning opportunities that can be reviewed
- making learning fun
- creative problem-solving as a team
I was trolling through some video stuff the other day and came across this team building activity called Wacky Races we did with some clients a few years ago. It made me laugh because the weather was quite appalling. Nevertheless everyone got on with the planning and design and had fantastic fun with the racing. In fact the weather made it really - it was so ludicrous.
This type of team activity makes a good half/full day team building session and will be a trip down memory lane when kids used to make go-karts and buggies out of all sorts of rubbish and pram wheels. Just make sure you find a good flat surface in which to race your buggies, and the decoration of the team karts is as much of the team identity process as is the building and racing.
Take turns to race the kart and don't forget the winner's podium, chequered flag and magnum of champagne for the winners!
Last week we were in shock. We had a phone call from someone who used our team building services many moons ago, in fact it was 18 years ago, not long after we had started up as a team building events company.
Nicky is now HR Manager at Royal Tunbridge Wells Borough Council. Thinking about team building she sent us an email saying she remembered the events and were we still around? What a surprise! I visited her yesterday in delightful Tunbridge Wells and she is just the same larger than life character. Hopefully we'll get something going with them!
Nicky showed me her "Ideas Factory" wall. It was really impressive. Invited employees work with a local artist to produce a pictorial representation of how they want to improve life and services in the borough. All ideas are discussed and many are put into workable plans. The murals and pictures are a constant reminder of what they signed up to as well as making a fantastically colourful display and brightening up an old building.
Strikes me that this is something that many organisations could do. Input from employees is invaluable and realising their ideas and hard work makes commitment to the causes so much easier. It makes a great team building session too!
Sharon Naylor has worked with teams for more than 21 years. She is passionate about using experiential activities to motivate and inspire employees. Check out her ice breaker ideas web-site for hundreds of ice breaker games and team building activities to turn your training programs and meetings into extraordinary events that everyone will want to be part of.
Start off your meeting or training session with a fun, experiential team activity and your team will be firing on all cylinders right from the word "go"! Dynamic and participative, we strongly believe in the experiential element of getting teams to have a go together at something fun together. They can be used for:
- Breaking the ice at the start of a session
- Breaking down barriers between individuals
- Creative problem-solving
- Illustrating a training point
- Creating team dynamics
- Providing an opportunity to review the way teams work
- To give feedback on team roles
- Low-cost exercises for when budgets are tight
- Ice breakers for conferences and both small and large events
- Kids love them too!
However you use these fun team activities you will find that they can have a real impact on your event. We have used them on all our team building events for over 20 years. In tough times they are also extrememly economical; you can run these team activites yourself without having to employ expensive outsiders! Check out the ice breaker ideas web-site for more on the sticky rope team activity and for ice breaker and training ideas to sky rocket your events!
A great little ice breaker game to start a training session or meeting is "How I See Myself". This ice breaker is particularly good for getting to know each other's strengths and weaknesses and see how others view them.
Ask participants to bring their chairs into a circle and simply hand out a blank postcard to each person. Ask each person to write down 5 adjectives that describe themselves; 3 should be strengths and 2 should be perceived weaknesses. So i might write: enthusiastic, imaginative, creative, impatient and intolerant. Put all the cards into a hat, basket or recepticle and mix up.
Walk around the circle with the hat and get each person to pick a card (hopefully it won't be their own; if it is, they will have to put back and take another). Go around the circle and in turn read out the card - that person then has to guess who the card belongs to.
When the ice breaker game is finished, find out who was easy to guess and who wasn't and why?
A great variation would be to pull names out of a hat and write 5 adjectives for that person, put them back into the hat and repeat the above process. How accurate would the 5 word descriptions. If it was easy to guess you'll know it's a fairly accurate view of how people see you.
Sharon Naylor is passionate about ice breaker games and uses them extensively to kickstart training sessions, group meetings and team building. For more fantastic training ice breakers and ideas to instantly download and transform your events visit the ice breaker ideas web-site.
I came away from my college course yesterday buzzing! Got me thinking that that's exactly what you want your participants to be doing. If they're not buzzing it's not working! The course and the team building activities have certainly moulded us into a good little team.
I thought I'd share with you one of the team building activities. It's a very easy construction activity to set up and will cause lots laughs:
The goal for the team (5-7 team members is best) was to build the tallest identifiable free standing giraffe using the materials provided. We had one hour to complete the task before we had to compare with other teams and the giraffes had to be capable of standing unaided for 30 seconds.
Materials you will need per team: a big handful of uncooked spaghetti; a large handful of drinking straws; a bag of marshmallows; roll of sellotape; string; 2 sheets of light card
There was at first a lot of discussion about how we were going to do this, and we spent a good 20 minutes talking. Sadly, it turns out we had no engineers or practical people in the team! Everyone got busy building individual bits of head, neck, legs and body and gradually our giraffe took on a form of its own. Nearing the time limit I think everyone knew it didn't have a chance in hell of standing up on its own, more like a puppet on a string.
After one hour we came together with the other teams to display our giraffes. Some were very impressive and freestanding. Ours was a miserable flop and no sooner had we let her off the leashed - she collapsed in a heap on the floor to the merriment of everyone in the room!
Still, we enjoyed it and it was a great team activity! And easy to have a go with any team.
Sharon Naylor is passionate about team building and has been running her own team building company for more than 21 years. She believes in the motivation aspect of team building activites that get teams working together and having fun. For more fantastic team building and ice breaker ideas to use with your own team and instantly download, visit the ice breaker ideas web-site
Here's a neat little team building activity that's great fun that will test your team's co-ordination and resolve.
- You will need 2 short planks per team, and 2 rope or cloth slings for each person.
- You can have a start and finish line if you want to make a race of it!
- Mark out a route with cones or bamboo canes across a lawned area.
- Instruct the teams that when you say go they have to cross the start line and follow the route around all the posts, without touching the ground and using only the equipment provided. Alow a few minutes planning time.
- Divide your group into teams of 5 to 6 persons and give them the 2 planks. Give each person 2 slings and then time them around the route.
It's hilarious fun, easy to set-up and the teams are sure to have a good time!
Reviewing the Team Building Activity
- How did teams make use of the planning time?
- How did the team problem-solve and come up with the solution?
- In what way did the team work well together?
Great teams can be defined in many ways. Check these characteristics against your own team:
Vision and Purpose
Great teams know where they are going and know what they want to achieve. No matter what else happens to distract teams and individuals, great teams know this is the reason for coming together as a team and they never lose sight of this.
Great teams are an enthusiastic bunch - they approach projects and activities with high energy. They are achievers and love having fun whilst doing. They become a dynamic powerhouse in whatever they do. They are positive and influence other people by their natural effervescence. Everybody wants to be part of this team. By contrast negative and unenthusiastic individuals zap energy and destroy creativity and have no place in this team.
Great teams know each other well. they know and accept their differences and understand that not everybody has to have the same ideas, values and opinions. This helps teams to become creative and diverse and any differences of opinion are quickly put aside for the greater vision and goals of the organisation.
How to get your teams to be great? Well you could start by having a bit of fun together. Have regular meetings and build Ice Breaker Games into the start of every meeting. In just a few minutes you will get people laughing, having fun and ready to start the day with high energy. Check out how ice-breaker-ideas.com can help with making your meetings a fun place to be.
It seems funny to be writing about breaking-the-ice in Bahrain where the temperature is currently around 45 degrees. But that is just what my colleague, Phil England, has been doing in the Gulf state. Phil is running a team building programme for the Bahrain Petroleum Company and he has just used simple ice breaker games to break the ice and get people engaged and listening. As well as learning names, and making people feel more comfortable, Phil said, "ice breakers have no boundaries, they work across all cultures, introducing people to each other and helping people feel relaxed and ready for the next element of the day."
Avid fell runner and mountaineer, Phil said he still managed to find time to go for a run in the sweltering heat "though I thought I might melt!"
For a cooler selection of ice breaker games visit our web-site ice-breaker-ideas.com