If you are located near our home base of Raleigh, N.C., USA, you have a lot of team building options: scavenger hunts, go-karts, drum circles, adventure courses, personality testing, and more. All of these are fun and help group members get to know each other as people. If the provider adds team development work like goal-setting, they might have some lasting impact on your operation.
Until you have a team structure in place, however, these options are not your best value for the dollar. They can even do more harm than good.
Team structure in the form of agreements among the manager and members on how to interact and accomplish work is scientifically proven to be the most powerful means of improving worker satisfaction and other measures of team performance. If you spend eight hours on having fun, you reduce some people's stress for eight hours. Basic psychology says other people, those who feel behind in their work, will feel more stress. And the next day, everything that creates stress in your workplace will still be there. Any benefits of the event will quickly disappear, and a percentage of your workers will feel worse than before the event because they think their time was wasted. Few if any will be brave enough to tell their manager or whoever arranged for the event, however.
Furthermore, doing team development one piece at a time does not work. The studs of a house are useless without a solid foundation, walls, roof, plumbing, and so on. Each part is necessary for the house to fulfill its potential. Only comprehensive agreements are guaranteed to give you and your co-workers a better working life, and your managers and customers better results. Then, the other options are a great way to celebrate!
Assessments like Myers-Briggs and DiSC® are not scientifically accurate, address only a tiny percentage of issues a team faces, and do not work for the reasons their sellers claim they do. Other, less work-specific activities like games do not translate into workplace change because humans are not good at recognizing when and how to apply lessons learned in one abstract setting to a specific situation in another setting. Research also shows you cannot trust your "feeling" that things are better, due to unconscious biases that impact all of us. The only way to be sure of a positive impact is to create objective performance measures for the issues you want to change before the event, track them long enough to establish trends, then re-measure for the same time period afterward. If the seller of a team building option does not suggest measuring the impact or guarantee positive change the way we do, they aren't really a team builder.
Because you work within driving distance of our home base in Raleigh, true team building from TeamTrainers is especially cost-effective for you. Trainer expenses are low, and the benefits of extra face-time with your coach are as close as your nearest coffee shop. Don't choose short-term fun over long-term goodwill without talking to us first. Call today.