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Teamwork and team spirit - Hands piled on top of one another

Teamwork and team spirit – Hands piled on top of one another

In the corporate world, it’s very common for companies to invest time, effort, and money into team building activities for their sales teams. They do so as a way to foster relationships within the team and thus allow team members to effectively support one another as they go through the daily ups and downs that make up the life of a salesperson. Employees in customer service go through a similar ride of ups and downs as their cases come in, but at an accelerated rate due to the nature of their work. Thus, it only makes sense to invest the same energies into ensuring that the members of a customer care team have a similarly positive, supportive group dynamic to help them stay fresh and stay positive.

When you hear “team building exercises”, your mind probably immediately goes to visions of a ropes course and a bunch of employees wearing safety harnesses and hard hats. However, there are many beneficial ways to build a positive group dynamic without putting everyone on a bus and sending them out to an expensive obstacle course. Here are just a few ideas you can implement in your office.

Let their creative sides fly

Break up the department into smaller teams and choose one person to serve as the judge. Have the judge randomly pass out a card (each with a different thing written on them) and instruct the teams to create what the card says with Play-Doh. Set a reasonable time limit and let the teams begin their masterpieces! Once the time is up, have each team appoint a spokesperson to present and “sell” their creation to the judge. This exercise will require the team members to determine their own strengths and weaknesses in order to contribute effectively to the goal within the time frame allotted. It may also result in some hilarious works of “art”.

Solve a group problem

Break up into groups and give each team a packet of craft popsicle sticks and scotch tape. Instruct them to build the tallest tower possible within 10 minutes. This exercise will allow for group brainstorming to create a plan of attack while also forcing the team to readjust their approach and goals along the way. The teams will also have to decide whether or not to continue with their ideas or to adopt those of their neighboring teams in order to win the competition.

Relax together

Rather than having fun in the office, get your team out of the office for a day of fun and getting to know one another. While a lot of companies choose bowling, consider the value of taking the team to a matinee, followed by lunch or dinner where everyone can relax and discuss the show or just life in general. The movies that often lead to the most spirited and fun conversations are campy comedies, with all of the wonderful fodder they provide.

The more often you can provide your team the time to get to know one another as individuals and not just coworkers, the stronger their camaraderie will be in the office and the more likely they are to notice (and be able to help) when one of their teammates is struggling and needs encouragement or assistance.

Have you been implementing team building exercises? Have you found any to be particularly valuable for morale or the team dynamic? We’d love for you to share your experiences with all of us.